When I last saw the DePaul women's basketball team, they suffered a frustrating loss to Seton Hall. Having just seen Marquette easily beat this Seton Hall team, it didn't look good for DePaul.
In the post-game media session, DePaul coach Doug Bruno expressed frustration, but not resignation. He credited Seton Hall with a great effort and acknowledged Marquette as the team to beat in the Big East. Bruno went on to say that DePaul needed to find it within themselves to get back on track and in the Big East race.
Last Sunday, I saw DePaul dig very deep and show lots of heart, despite losing to Marquette at home. It was a very different Bruno in this post-game session. The frustration was replaced with excitement and pride. This is the team that won the Big East title last year. This is the team that could win it again this year.
My coverage also appears on the Patch at DePaul Women's Basketball Team Shows Heart in Loss. Today though, I want to talk about the heart I saw from DePaul.
While they lost to Marquette, they showed plenty of talent and guts. Every time Marquette seemed on the verge of putting away the game, DePaul came back, chipping away at the lead. DePaul actually tied the game with about 2 minutes left. In the end, Marquette was just a bit better and secured a 93-87 victory.
Marquette coach Carolyn Kieger preceded Bruno in the post-game media session. She was quick to praise DePaul's effort. She knew that despite the win, her team faced a big challenge. Fortunately for the Golden Eagles, last year's Big East Player of the Year Allazia Blockton returned from an injury which saw her miss several games. The first place Golden Eagles just got a bit better.
Marquette (11-0) is still undefeated in 1st place in the Big East. DePaul (7-4) sits in 3rd place, .5 games behind 2nd place Butler. DePaul is in for a tough challenge in their quest to repeat as Big East champs, but Sunday's game certainly was encouraging.
Speaking of the Big East championship tournament, it will once again be held at Wintrust Arena March 9-12. I went to last season's Big East tournament as something interesting to cover. Of course, I got interesting stuff for stories, but I really loved the action. I decided to do more coverage this season. These young women are elite athletes and the action is basketball at its best. I am really looking forward to this year's Big East tournament.
You can get more info on the Big East tournament at Big East Championship Central. I'll be there "On the Beat" and reporting as always.
DePaul Women's Basketball Team in Chicago, IL-February 2019.