Golden Eagles Search for Road Trip Sweep – Marquette Wire

After taking a win on Friday night to begin its two-game midwest road trip, the Marquette women’s basketball team will now be looking for a sweep Sunday afternoon at Hinkle Fieldhouse against the Butler Bulldogs.

The Golden Eagles (12-5, 5-3 BIG EAST) are coming off a 65-46 win against the Xavier Musketeers at the Cintas Center Friday.

Graduate striker Lauren Van Kleunen and junior guard Jordan King each had 17 points in the game and shot a combined 14-19 from the field. King also contributed three assists, two rebounds and led Marquette with three steals.

Sophomore forward Liza Karlen finished with a near triple-double, scoring nine points, grabbing nine rebounds and providing eight assists. In addition, Karlen scored four blocks and two steals on the defensive side of the ball.

Meanwhile, Butler (1-14, 0-6), enters Sunday’s game amid a four-game losing streak after falling last Friday night against the DePaul Blue Demons 103-69.

DePaul’s full court press caused trouble for Butler all night, forcing 22 Bulldogs turnovers, resulting in 31 points. Butler’s 69 points is the highest scoring output for the team this season against a BIG EAST team.

Butler was led by senior guard Emilia Sexton, who finished with 19 points off the bench. Graduate student Celena Taborn was held to eight points and played just 14 minutes in the lopsided loss.

Sunday’s matinee game will complete the home-and-home season with the Golden Eagles leading the season’s series 1-0. Despite taking 29.9% of the field when both teams met on December 5 in Milwaukee, Marquette led almost the entire game.

Graduate students Karissa McLaughlin and Lauren Van Kleunen combined for 30 points in the Golden Eagles’ 59-45 win.

While Marquette is looking into the road trip and season, Butler will upset the Golden Eagles and take the first conference win of the season.

Fun facts:

  • The Marquette-Butler matchup dates back to the 1985-86 season, in which Butler won that one 62-61.
  • Over the past two seasons, the Bulldogs have been a combined 4-for-29.
  • Butler is 11th in scoring margin in the BIG EAST, beating an average of 18.5 points per game this season.
  • Marquette are 10-1 at halftime this season, with their only loss against Villanova last Sunday.
  • The Golden Eagles are in 10th place in the BIG EAST in free throw percentage, losing just 66.7% of their free throws.

A look back:

  • Marquette leads the all-time series with a 16-9 record.
  • Marquette has won the last three matchups in a row against Butler.
  • The Golden Eagles are 6-4 all-time on the road at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
  • Butler head coach Kurt Godlevske is 3-12 all-time against the Golden Eagles in his eight seasons.

Players to watch:

  • Sophomore guard Danyel Middleton is a spark off the bench for the Golden Eagles. In her last three games, Middleton plays an average of 22 minutes and contributes 10 points and six rebounds per game.
  • Graduation student Lauren Van Kleunen is ninth in the BIG EAST in rebound, averaging 6.8 per game. The native of Mason, Ohio, has also scored in double digits in four of her last five games.
  • Taborn is the Bulldogs’ leading scorer and rebounder, averaging 14.3 points and 5.2 rebounds per game after moving from Furman University.
  • Freshman forward Alex Richard is seventh in the GREAT EAST in field goal percentage, shooting 50.6% from the field. Indiana native, De Avon is the Bulldogs’ third leading scorer with 9.4 points per game, while also bringing down 4.3 rebounds per night.

Keys to the game:

  • Marquette: Get the attack in rhythm. Butler ranks 11th in the BIG EAST in scoring defense, allowing teams to score 79.8 points per game. In the Bulldogs, one win of the season, they held the Evansville University Aces to 67 points.
  • Butler: Become more active in the defense. The Bulldogs are least dead in steals and blocks. Additionally, Butler is bottom of the defensive field goal percentage and defensive three-point percentage, allowing teams to shoot 44.4% from the field and 33.1% from beyond the three-point line.
  • Butler: Manage revenue. Butler currently averages the most sales in the BIG EAST at 21 sales per game.

How To Follow:

  • Watch: BIG EAST Digital Network on FloSports. Please note a subscription is required to watch.
  • Live updates on Twitter: @JacksonGrossMU and @MUWireSports

This article was written by Jackson Gross. He can be reached at jackson.gross@marquette.edu or on Twitter @JacksonGrossMU.

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