Marquette Is Winning the Close Ones

Gregory BoulangerContributor IMarch 2, 2010

ROSEMONT, IL - JANUARY 20: Dwight Buycks #23 of the Marquette Golden Eagles moves under pressure from Will Walker #30 of the DePaul Blue Demons at the Allstate Arena on January 20, 2010 in Rosemont, Illinois. DePaul defeated Marquette 51-50. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Now that Marquette  has won eight of their last nine games and are on the good side of the tournament bubble, they can really look back at the effort at the end of the last three games as what helped them get into the big dance.

79-76 (OT), 63-61 (OT), and 84-83 (OT). That’s what you’ll see when you look at MU ’s schedule and results for its last three games. As you can see, the Golden Eagles have played in overtime three times in a row, one shy of the NCAA record. Even more astounding, they have won all of these games.

In the first game against Cincy , it was Lazar Hayward —who was having one of his worst games of the season—who hit a game-tying three-pointer at the end of regulation to send the game to OT. He then proceeded to lead the team in OT to a big win against a tough team on the road.

A few days later, it was Jimmy Butler against St. Johns . The same man who hit a fade-away game winning jumper against UCONN  on the road did the same thing in Queens, NY against the Red Storm .

And Saturday, it took a total team effort to put down a pesky Seton Hall  team in beautiful Newark, NJ. All five of MU’s starters reached double figures, led by Hayward, who had 23. Darius Johnson Odom  and David Cubillan also had strong efforts with 16 points each.  DJO would not be denied on his way to the hoop late in regulation.

Bottom line, MU has a lot of clutch players on their team, and that’s why they have won eight of nine and hopped off the bubble a bit. They still have two important games against Notre Dame and Louisville coming up to finish the season plus the Big East Tournament . But, as it stands now, the Golden Eagles have played their way into the big dance.

For a year in which MU lost three of their top four players from the year before, and projected starting point guard Junior Cadougan  to a major injury, they have really fought hard. Kudos to Lazar Hayward, Jimmy Butler, DJO, Maurice Acker , and David Cubillan.


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