Marquette fends off SJU 2-0 in Big East Semis

A lack of offensive production and a struggle to stop Marquette from attacking Diana Poulin with shots from array of angles hampered the St. John’s women’s soccer team on Friday night. The Red Storm were defeated 2-0 in the Big East Semifinals, possibly ending what their historic season.  

The no. 4 Red Storm (11-4-3, 4-3-2 Big East) went to Milwaukee to face the No. 1 Golden Eagles (16-3, 9-0 Big East) in the Big East Tournament Semifinals. The Johnnies are 0-9 all-time versus Marquette.

The first half was all Marquette. They controlled the ball for a vast majority of the half and constantly tested St. John’s keeper Diana Poulin. The Golden Eagles had 18 shots (eight on goal) in the first half compared to the Red storm’s one total shot.

Poulin had a busy first half with seven saves. But Marquette was able to squeeze out a goal on a header by Mary Luba that hit of the crossbar and just snuck into the net giving Marquette a 1-0 lead.

“It was a great game for Diana,” said Coach Ian Stone. “She was very confident, was safe when handling the ball, and she was strong under pressure. This was on of her best games of the year.”

St. John’s continued to struggle to start the second half as one of Marquette’s first team All-Big East members, Maegan Kelly, found the back of the net with a strike off of her right foot to give Marquette a 2-0 lead.

The St. John’s defense was able to stop the Golden Eagles offense after the Maegan Kelly goal early in the second half, but the offense couldn’t find any rhythm throughout the entire game.

The Red Storm offense only tallied a total of two shots throughout out the night and none on goal. The Golden Eagles had a total of 25 shots, 12 on goal on the night.

“The field wasn’t great, but that’s no excuse,” said Coach Stone. “We didn’t pass well, we needed to play quicker, and we couldn’t match Marquette’s energy.”

The Red Storm season may not be over, as the participants in the NCAA women’s soccer tournament will be announced on Monday and the Red Storm do have a shot at an at-large NCAA Tournament bid.

“We had a very good season,” said Coach Stone. “We still have a chance for an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. The results of other tournaments will help determine our chances. I would love to see us get another game to play, I think we earned it.”