The Marquette women’s soccer team was crowned champion of its invitational tournament this weekend at Valley Fields, defeating Saint Mary’s (Calif.) 3-0 and Colorado College 3-1.
Senior midfielder Taylor Madigan, named the tournament’s Offensive MVP, scored three goals over the two contests. Senior defender Katie Hishmeh was named the Defensive MVP.
It was the first invitational tournament hosted by Marquette, which improves to 4-2 and has now gone undefeated at home in 13 consecutive matches.
“We hadn’t had that weekend yet where we’ve won both games, so that was a big thing for us,” coach Markus Roeders said. “We definitely wanted to set the tone. This was a big weekend for us. We had a chance to really put our best foot forward and I think we did that.”
The nationally ranked Golden Eagles had early difficulty finding the back of the net Friday against Saint Mary’s, coming away with headers for near misses and finishing wide on several strikes. Goals by senior forward Cara Jacobson and junior midfielder Mary Luba in the 27th minute gave Marquette the momentum it needed.
Madigan scored in the 33rd minute to widen the gap to 3-0. Madigan and Luba’s goals occurred under unusual circumstances. Luba rebounded a shot that deflected the crossbar and drilled the ball in for the score. Madigan netted her goal when Saint Mary’s goalie Kaeli Schmidt dove to her right to block a Mady Vicker strike, but Schmidt lost control of the ball and Madigan, already inside the box, made easy work of it.
Roeders praised his players for being constantly alert on the pitch for those scores, and believed the odd goals provided entertainment for the fans and for the bench.
“I think people like to watch it, and I think anybody who came out tonight had to say that was pretty fun to watch,” Roeders said. “That’s something that’s within our play, and hopefully we can keep getting even better.”
Colorado College established itself as the aggressor early in its match against the Golden Eagles, getting several breakaway opportunities that were eventually halted by Marquette defenders.
Madigan received a feed from senior midfielder Maegan Kelly in the 28th minute and shot to make the score 1-0. Kelly, with 32 career assists, is now two shy of becoming the program’s all-time leader.
The Tigers wasted no time entering the second half and tied the game 1-1 on a goal by Sarah Schweiss. However, Marquette, similar to its Saint Mary’s match, scored twice in swift fashion. Goals by junior midfielder Mady Vicker and Madigan came only three minutes apart, allowing the Golden Eagles much-needed breathing room.
“They put a lot more pressure on us than Saint Mary’s, but I think we responded well to it and came back with our own aggression,” Vicker said. “It worked out in our favor. It was really important to get a good, solid weekend.”
Madigan isn’t searching for attention after being named Offensive MVP, saying it would not be hers had it not been for her teammates.
“It’s awesome, but I think everyone around me helped, obviously,” Madigan said. “All different people were scoring this weekend. Different people were assisting, so it was just a matter of finishing our chances. We did what we needed to do.”
Marquette hosts Colgate this Friday at 7 p.m. at Valley Fields. Colgate, which qualified for the NCAA Tournament last fall, enters the match 4-1.