King learns on run with Eagles

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Photo courtesy of Marquette University Hononegah graduate Jordan King is off to a terrific start for Marquette this season. She scored eight points in Thursday's loss to Northwestern.

MILWAUKEE - Jordan King's eyes widened as she suddenly came upon an unpleasant revelation.

"I have to study for my test tomorrow," King said through a groan.

Studying was probably the last thing she wanted to do at 10:45 on a frigid Thursday night.

After all, the Marquette freshman had already put in plenty of work for the evening.

King played 39 minutes in Marquette's 64-56 overtime loss to Northwestern at the Al McGuire Center on Marquette's campus.

It was the fourth game of her collegiate career, and King, as evidenced by her excessive minute total, has been thrown right into the wolves.

The Hononegah graduate is Marquette's point guard, a position she didn't play either for the Indians or in AAU basketball.

She's the player conferring with first-year head coach Megan Duffy during every stoppage of play, the one teammates turn to when the shot clock is at five and they need something to happen.

Thursday night, King finished with eight points, two assists, two steals and two rebounds. She committed five turnovers, but all of those came in the first half.

Complicating matters was the fact that the Golden Eagles were playing without the services of their leading scorer, Selena Lott, who was sitting out with a minor injury suffered in Marquette's win over Illinois State Sunday.

It was the first loss of her career after three wins to begin the season, but King came away pleased with her team's performance.

"We are such a young team and facing Northwestern, a Big Ten team, was great experience for us," King said. "I think we really struggled in the first half offensively, but our defense kept us in it. When we started to make shots in the second half, we got right back in the game."

The Golden Eagles shot just 29 percent from the field and trailed 25-17 at half as they got used to life without Lott.

Thanks in large measure to the 3-point marksmanship of Isabelle Spingola (18 points on 6-of-12 from beyond the arc), the Golden Eagles fought back and eventually took the lead.

Northwestern's leading scorer Lindsay Pulliam, whom King ended up matched up against at times throughout the evening, hit a runner in the lane to tie the score with four seconds left, sending the game to an extra session.

With four players at 38 minutes or above, the Golden Eagles ran out of steam in the extra session and fell to 3-1 on the season.

Duffy said she couldn't be more pleased with the job that King has done for the team thus far.

"Jordan's been awesome for us," Duffy said. "For someone who has taken over the point guard duties, not her natural position, she has a steadiness about her that really helps our team. She gets frustrated with herself at times, but I tell her all the time that just being out on the floor, her presence, her poise, even though it might not feel like she's doing great, for a freshman to do the things she's doing, even if it doesn't always show up in the stat sheet, she's a big part of our team.

"I'm really proud of what she's been able to do. We're going to hear a lot about Jordan king over the next four years."

King said the adjustment has been difficult at times, but

"It's been great," King said. "I love how everything is going. Stepping into a new role at a new level, the biggest thing for me is just keeping my confidence up. That's what teammates and coaches are for, and they've all been great."

King and the Golden Eagles will take on s Bay in their first road challenge of the season Tuesday at 7 p.m.

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