“For a guy that can't see and really can't shoot, he was six of seven from the field,” Williams said. “For a guy that I think is a 45 percent free throw shooter, he was four of seven from the free throw line. And he can't shoot. But somehow, he made four of seven.”
[Jake Thomas his two threes vs NH]
One of the game's few high points came with about six minutes remaining in the second half, when Marquette was leading New Hampshire 45-38. Jake Thomas, the ill-fated senior guard who came into the game with twice as many personal fouls as field goals, found his shooting touch and drilled back-to-back threes from the right wing. Unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, the team only made one other attempt from behind the arc all game and finished 3-22 from deep.
Regarding Marquette's 32.7 percent shooting performance from the field, Williams said it was time for his team to go back to the basics.
“At some point you have to rewind to, did you earn the right to make that shot?” he said. “ And that has to be earned by how hard you play. And we're not playing near hard enough.”
Marquette started the game hot, as it built a 20-5 lead on 8-17 shooting in the game's first 10 minutes. However, the Golden Eagles closed out the first half by missing their next 12 shots from the field, including a botched Jamil Wilson dunk as time expired. They only led 25-18 at halftime.
To make matters worse, the team's shooting woes weren't only limited to the three point line; Marquette only hit 21 of its 34 attempts from the charity stripe, as well. Meanwhile the Wildcats hit six of their final seven three point attempts to cut Marquette's lead to as small as four in the second half. New Hampshire's near comeback was aided by the Golden Eagles' inability to close out the game, as they went 5-8 from the free throw line in the final minute.
[Todd Mayo drives for 2 of his 16 pts]
Todd Mayo, who finished 4-9 from the field and 7-8 from the free throw line, tied with Chris Otule with a game-high 16 points. Believe it or not, he has quietly become the Golden Eagles' leading scorer this season.
Looking forward, Marquette will need to find some more offensive efficiency if it has any hope of competing on the road against Arizona State next week. To put the team's underwhelming five-point win over New Hampshire into perspective, the New Jersey Institute of Technology had a larger margin of victory over the Wildcats just four days earlier.