Women's Soccer: Marquette ends Tigers' NCAA run, 3-1
The women’s soccer team’s matchup with No. 4-seed Marquette in the second round of the NCAA tournament shaped up as a battle between Princeton’s high-scoring offense and the Golden Eagles’ brick-wall defense. But in the end, it was Marquette’s offense that made the difference, coming from behind to win 3-1 and ending the Tigers’ season.
Princeton (14-4-1 overall, 7-0 Ivy League) entered the game fifth in the nation in scoring, while Marquette (18-2-2) was one of the best defensively, leading the nation with 16 shutouts in 21 games. In the first half, the Tigers struck first as the visitors jumped to an early lead. Shortly after Princeton earned two corner kicks in a two-minute span, sophomore forward Lauren Lazo dribbled close to the goal and scored, putting Princeton up 1-0 with her 11th goal of the season.
Senior goalie Claire Pinciaro preserved Princeton’s lead as Marquette launched a tough attack, saving two shots in the next 13 minutes. Before the game, head coach Julie Shackford said the Tigers would focus on staying organized defensively, and it showed for most of the first half.
Sophomore midfielder Jessica Haley had the Tigers’ other shot on goal in the period, but it was blocked by Marquette goalie Amanda Engel. In the last minute of the half, Marquette midfielder Cara Jacobson passed the ball to Ally Miller, who sent the ball into the net, evening the score at 1-1 as the final minute ticked away.
Before the game, Shackford worried about the Golden Eagles’ dynamic offense. “They like to go forward with numbers, and their scoring is balanced,” she said. Marquette proved her correct in the second half, pulling away with goals from two additional players.
Just eight minutes into the half, it was leading scorer Taylor Madigan who put Marquette ahead 2-1, receiving a pass from forward Maegan Kelly and securing the goal. Meanwhile, the Golden Eagles’ defense was able to stifle Princeton’s previously powerful attack, holding the Tigers to just one shot in the entire second half and three for the game.
Marquette, meanwhile, had six shots in the period. Defender Ally Miller scored when she turned another pass from Jacobson into a Marquette goal in the 83rd minute, making the final score 3-1.
The game’s intensity was obvious, with both teams fighting for ball control. Seventeen fouls were called overall, and Jacobson was given a yellow card in the 89th minute.
Thursday’s contest brought an end to the Tigers’ most successful season since 2004, when they reached the final four of the NCAA tournament. This year’s team won the Ivy League championship with a perfect 7-0 record and had eight All-Ivy honorees, including Ivy League Player of the Year senior forward Jen Hoy. Hoy was third in the nation in goals per game and sixth in points per game in her final season as a Tiger.