DePaul Shot Down in BIG EAST Quarterfinals
Oct. 31, 2010
Milwaukee, Wis. - They were in uncharted territory, these Blue Demons, encountering their very first BIG EAST Conference Championship quarterfinal on a sunny Halloween Sunday.
They discovered what it takes to become a BIG EAST Final-Four team during a 3-0 loss to No. 13/12 Marquette.
The mandate from coach Erin Chastain had been simple: Win the moment and believe in yourself.
But on this day, it was Marquette (15-3-2) who won most of the moments behind a disruptive defense and superior firepower in advancing to the BIG EAST semifinals next weekend at Rutgers.
True to its nature, Marquette came out firing.
The Golden Eagles launched the first eight shots of the game---all of them right at DePaul goalkeeper Kelsey Hoinkes.
Shot No. 7 was a header from Rachel Brown in the 30th minute that sailed over Hoinkes' head and into the net. Rachael Sloan set up the score with a cross from the right side after taking a pass from Ashley Bares.
Hoinkes had been under siege, and the steadfast senior limited the high-powered Golden Eagles to that one score for the first 80 minutes. She made 10 saves in her final performance as 13 of Marquette's 15 shots were on goal.
"We were pushing forward in the second half, especially towards the end," said DePaul midfielder Lauren Pagone. "We were getting more shots off in the second half, but couldn't find that goal."
The gamble to score the tying goal left the Blue Demons' defense exposed, and Marquette took full advantage.
The Golden Eagles scored an insurance goal in the 81st minute on a shot by Lauren Acree into the far post off a pass from Lindsay Page. In the 84th minute, Rosie Malone-Povolny hit a shot from 13 yards out that accounted for the final margin. Lauren Thut was credited with the assist.
"It took us a whole half to settle in," said DePaul coach Erin Chastain as Marquette had eight shots on goal in the first half to none for the Blue Demons. "Our group learned how much of an advantage it is to have a quarterfinal game at home."
Last year after making the BIG EAST playoffs for the first time, DePaul lost its first-round game at USF. This season, DePaul (11-9-2) earned a home playoff game and beat Pittsburgh 1-0 last Thursday.
Next year, Chastain & Co. will strive to lock up a quarterfinal game at Wish Field at Cacciatore Stadium.
"Every year we have gotten better and better," Pagone said. "Our goal this year was to advance in the tournament---and we did that. I know next year the program will advance to the next level."
"Our seniors have had great careers and leave behind quite a legacy for women's soccer at DePaul," Chastain said. "They have put our program on the BIG EAST map.
"They can walk away from the field today and be very proud of everything that they accomplished.
"I'm proud of the way our team battled in the second half and never gave up. Marquette is probably the best team in the BIG EAST, and I'm proud of the effort we showed today."
Pagone boarded the team bus for the ride back to Lincoln Park---her final trip as a Blue Demon.
She had saved the best for last, coming through with a career year in her final season. Pagone led the team with a career-high six goals this season and topped the Blue Demons with a career-high 13 points.
"This has been a really fun team to play with," Pagone said. "These players are extremely motivated and so dedicated to advancing the program every year.
"I couldn't have picked a better school and better teammates."
NOTES: In a season marked by adversity, DePaul's starting defender Beth Perry was sidelined Sunday by an injury... the heady junior had sacrificed her body to win a moment in last Thursday's playoff victory over Pittsburgh... Perry became the fourth starting defender to miss at least one game because of injury... Michelle Scandora shifted from the midfield to the back line in replacing Perry... Pagone switched from forward to the midfield and Radosavljevic started at forward... Marquette outshot DePaul 15-5 and had a 13-2 advantage in shots on goal... DePaul had all five of its shots in the second half... Natasa Radosavljevic led the Blue Demons with three shots and had the team's only shots on goal... Pagone had two shots in her final game... Hemming was second on the team in goal with four while Strickland and Radosavljevic each had three.. Kelly Blumberg, Michelle Scandora and Ashleigh Goddard each had two goals... Strickland was second to Pagone in points with 12, and Hemming followed with 11... Strickland led DePaul with 54 shots and 19 shots on goal... Arianna Foster had 33 shots and 17 on goal while Pagone had 26 shots and 14 on goal... Strickland winds up her career second all-time in DePaul women's soccer history with 45 career points... she is also second all-time in career assists with 17... Strickland is tied for fourth all-time in career goals with 14... the 11 wins this season is the second-highest mark in school history... the four overtime wins this season set a school record.