The Marquette Golden Eagles, a team filled with returning players, has now faced some tough opponents this season. Tonight their chemistry showed. They had a fast start, and never let their foot off of the gas pedal, against the visiting team from South Bend. What was perhaps most impressive was not the final margin, or how balanced the team was, but how the Marquette Golden Eagles maintained their intensity and level of play, in a spot where many teams would let up or be tempted to take it easy.
Marquette Golden Eagles First Half
Marquette ended up winning the game, and defeating the Notre Dame squad 78-59. What really allowed for the Marquette Golden Eagles to win in such a dominant fashion was the quick jump, right from tip off. Not only was the pressure too much for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, but the way that the Marquette defenders rotated, and played help defense really made it impossible for the Irish team to even breathe in the first half.
Notre Dame was not ready, as Marquette forced four early shot clock violations. While the Notre Dame offense was not able to get into any rhythm at all. Their defense was so dominant early, that it took a little over seven minutes just for Notre Dame to score their first point of the game. Meanwhile turnovers turned into points at the other end. This allowed Marquette to create what was at one point a 20 point lead in the first half.
Marquette Golden Eagles Stars
The floor general Tyler Kolek really controlled the game. Using his ball handling and vision to create shots for himself, or to set up teammates, he had a really nice night. There were even a couple times during the game that he made spectacular passes that made you pause and admire his skill set. He had another nice stat line of 17-7-7 while only turning the ball over twice.
One of the people that benefited was of course Oso Ighodaro. The beneficiary of great guard play, he also had a chance to show off his post skillset. The big man was able to showcase his finishing repertoire around the rim, as well as some crafty finishes. While going a perfect 8-8 from the foul line, he finished with 20 points.
Another player who deserves recognition is Kam Jones. Offensively he was able to create off of the dribble, and it really felt like he could get to any spot on the floor that he wanted to at any time. He finished with 11 points, going 5 of 10 from the field. Looking down the road, if Marquette is in a late game situation, and the ball is forced out of Koleks’ hands, Kam Jones would be a good go to option that does not appear to have any fear of making a play for his team.
Marquette Golden Eagles From Here
They have one more game against St Thomas before a tough stretch of Big East play. With how they played tonight, keeping the defensive intensity throughout the game, and taking care of the basketball, it is hard to see them not being in every game this year. Sitting at 8-2, having gone through some early adversity, and looking as good as they are now, this team is as prepared as they can be for the tough Big East schedule that is coming up.