Martin recorded her first career double-double and led four DePaul players in double figures as the No. 22 Blue Demons beat Marquette 71-59 in front of a sell-out crowd.
DePaul coach Doug Bruno has given his injury-riddled team the moniker of the ”Magnificent Seven,” so perhaps the last thing he needed to hear today was Martin telling him 15 minutes before game time that she has the flu.
“I told her that she has the Michael Jordan flu,” said Bruno. “We are not going to let you sit down and not play.”
A team-high 19 points, 10 rebounds and three assists later, she finally was able to sit down.
“I did not feel we came out ready to play. Marquette did a great job of giving us their best shot. They pounded it into the post, we got in foul trouble early, but after halftime we came out with a lot of energy and that is really what we needed.”
Trailing 30-27 at halftime and with Katherine Harry having two fouls, what spurred DePaul (19-7, 7-5 Big East) in the second half could have been a few things.
The first one: “I made one of the most critical adjustments in my coaching career,” said Bruno. "[DePaul player] Alexa Gallagher had surgery a few weeks ago and she has been sitting in the window [overlooking the court] and we were 2-0 with her in the window. We blew out Louisville and we beat Villanova. She was on the bench in the first half [today] so at halftime I made her go sit in the window.”
The second one: DePaul at halftime honoring former DePaul women’s basketball players and assistant coaches, including Felicia Chester, Sam Quigley and Deirdre Naughton from last year’s Sweet Sixteen team.
Or, it could have been DePaul playing DePaul basketball.
A jumper by Katie Young gave the Golden Eagles their largest lead of the game at 38-31 at the 17:29 mark.
Marquette led 45-41 and still had DePaul on the ropes when a steal by Kelsey Reynolds off an inbound pass led to a lay up by Jasmine Penny (14 points). Then a steal by Brittany Hrynko (16 points, five assists, two steals) led to a lay up by Martin. A lay up by Harry tied the score at 45. Hrynko assisted to Penny, and a three-pointer and lay up by Martin pushed DePaul’s lead to 56-49 with 8:45 left.
Marquette closed to 56-52 on a jumper by Arlesia Morse, but back to back three-pointers by Deanna Ortiz (12 points, game-high seven assists) shut the door.
Ortiz summed up DePaul basketball and what led to the comeback.
“We were executing our offense, getting good looks, finding the open person and making simple passes. That is how we approach every game.”
Katherine Plouffe scored a game-high 22 points to lead Marquette (13-11, 4-7 Big East).
DePaul travels to play West Virginia on February 18 at 3:00 CST. The Blue Demons then return to McGrath-Phillips Arena on February 21 to play Syracuse at 8:00 CST.
Today’s game was DePaul’s annual Play4Kay game, which benefits the Kay Yow Cancer Fund. Yow, the head coach of the North Carolina State’s women’s basketball team, died of breast cancer in 2009. Marquette wore pink uniforms and DePaul wore pink shoes, pink socks and pink headbands in honor of Yow.
“I met Kay when she was first diagnosed and I remember her spirit before it was a celebrated national cause,” said Bruno. “The grace with which she handled [her breast cancer] back then was unbelievably inspiring.”
- Martin passed Deirdre Naughton, Caprice Smith, Kim Williams and Janine Douglas to move into 18th place on DePaul’s career scoring leader list with 1,214 points.
- DePaul now leads the series, which dates back to 1978, 35-21.