Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday Cardinal Couple -- Cards in third place in AAC Women's Golf Tournament



MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Women's golf seven strokes back after Day One of Tourney

- Rowing captures five wins at Clemson

- Latest CARDINAL COUPLE radio on the Soundcloud


Louisville women's golf is in third place after the first round of the AAC Golf Championship Tournament at Hammock Beach Resort on Sunday.

The Central Florida Golden Knights are first on the leaderboard as teams battled 15-20 mile-per-hour wind gusts during round one. UCF finished 19-over-par (307) while Cincinnati recorded a 23-over-par 311 for second place. Louisville charted a 26-over-par 314 for third.

Cincinnati's Olivia Dose is the individual leader with a two-over-par 74 through 18 holes. Andrea Malek (Cincinnati) and Emily Haas (Louisville) are tied for second at 75 (+3). UCF's Ashley Holder and SMU's Jenny Haglund are both tied for fourth with four-over-par 76 scores. Laura Restrepo is tied for 9th at 78.

Tara Lyons fired an 80, Katie Petrino finished at 81 and Shannon Gramley carded and 82 as the other UofL participants.

The second round will begin at 8 a.m. eastern on Monday.


Team Results
1. UCF, 307 (+19)
2. Cincinnati, 311 (+23)
3. Louisville, 314 (+26)
4. SMU, 315 (+27)
5. Memphis, 319 (+31)
6. USF, 324 (+36)
7. Rutgers, 336 (+48)

Top-10 Individuals
1. Olivia Dose, Cincinnati, 74 (+2)
T2. Andrea Malek, Cincinnati, 75 (+3)
T2. Emily Haas, Louisville, 75 (+3)
T4. Ashley Holder, UCF, 76 (+4)
T4. Jenny Haglund, SMU, 76 (+4)
T6. Kristine Odaiyar, UCF, 77 (+5)
T6. Monifa Sealy, UCF, 77 (+5)
T6. Fanny Cnops, UCF, 77 (+5)
T9. Natalie Turk, Memphis, 78 (+6)
T9. Leighann Cabush, Memphis, 78 (+6)
T9. Raegan Bremer, Houston, 78 (+6)
T9. Laura Restrepo, Louisville, 78 (+6)  

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The Louisville rowing team had a successful weekend of racing at the Clemson Invite earning five wins overall, including a trio of victories by the second varsity eight boat.

The Cardinals' second varsity eight crew of Sophie St. Martin (coxswain), Elise Valantine, Lucy Wilshier, Lizzie DeVries, Cynthia Doyle, Kylen Pattermann, Hanna Spittel, Abbie Wade and Katie Nord finished ahead of crews from No. 13 UCLA, No. 15 Wisconsin and No. 16 Cornell in winning the three races on Lake Hartwell. The boat's fastest time of the weekend came in Sunday's first session when it defeated a field of six other crews with a time of 7:04.4. In addition, Louisville's second varsity four crew of Annie Pape (coxswain), Emma Melton, Jenny Marler, Paula Gollnick and Kylie Noltemeyer added a pair of wins defeating crews from both UCLA and Cornell. The Cardinals also earned runner-up finishes over the two days in the varsity eight, varsity four and third varsity eight boats. "I'm really proud of how the team has handled everything since the last race and especially the way we competed this weekend. They showed a lot of attention to detail in training, which was important because we had to get as much as we could out of our practices and it showed this weekend," said Louisville head coach Derek Copeland "The weather was certainly a factor again this weekend but we handled it much better. It was nice seeing everything come together for us. The mileage on the Ohio River has certainly paid off for this team."
 Up next, the Cardinals will have a week away from competition to prepare for a series of races in Ann Arbor, Mich., on May 3. Louisville is scheduled to compete against the host Wolverines as well as No. 3 ranked Ohio State. "Now, we have to turn our attention to completing the semester in the classroom with finals and also training for the races against Ohio State and Michigan in two weeks," said Copeland. "We have a plan for this time of the season and we know it works. We'll get plenty of rest and do a lot of studying to put ourselves in a good position for the racing in Michigan."


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Our latest edition of CARDINAL COUPLE Radio...on Crescent Hill Radio...is now up and available for listening in the archives. A good show where we talk a lot of lacrosse, softball, WNBA and Worldwide takes a lacrosse quiz. Some great soundbytes from Coach Kellie Young and Kay Morissette to hear and the usual wisecracks and in-depth reporting and analysis you've come to love and anticipate.

LINK:

www.crescenthillradio.com

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Sunday Cardinal Couple -- Lacrosse Routs Rutgers...Softball falls to UCF



SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-  Boltja scores four in 18-6 Lax win

- Grand slam does softball in @ UCF


HAPPY EASTER TO YOU! WE HOPE IT IS A DAY FILLED WITH HAPPINESS, JOY AND LOVE AND THE EASTER BUNNY PAYS YOU A VISIT. HE IS RISEN. HALLEUJAH.


Nikki Boltja totaled four goals and Faye "Fabian" Brust led all scorers with five as Louisville Lacrosse held Rutgers to two second half scores in a 18-6 Cardinal win at the Louisville Lacrosse Stadium Saturday afternoon.

Louisville (12-3, 6-0) clinch a share of the BIG EAST Title yesterday and the defense played a huge roll in the win...holding Rutgers to two goals in the final 30 minutes.

The win had Kellie Young almost speechless...standing on the sidelines with tears in her eyes...watching her team dash across the field as the clock hit zero to thank the over 500 fans in the stands for cheering them on.

" I am a little bit speechless because we have worked really hard to get to this place. It is something that we have talked aboutfor seven years. So, to finally accomplish it (winning the BIG EAST title) makes me proud of this team, these seniors...all of these players who have come here before and worked really hard to build a confident and determined program.

Rutgers hung around early...taking leads of 1-0 and 2-1 before the Cardinal defense put the clamps on and Faye Brust and Boltja took over. The Cards put six unanswered scores on the board...Colleen O'Malley providing two of them...to go up 7-2 with 11:20 left in the half. UofL took a 8-4 lead into the locker room at halftime.

Coach Young didn't make many adjustments for the final 30.

" I basically told them to keep tightening up on their scorers and attack the goal in the second half." 

Louisville was "all-in". The Cards scored the first six goals of the final period..over a eight minute stretch and led 14-4 after Boltja found the back of the net. At that point, the clock ran continuosly for most of the rest of the game and senior Anna Kopecka tallied Louisville's final score with two seconds left.

The Rutgers squad is a rough-and-tumble bunch...drawing numerous penalties and sending Kay (it's OK to call her Kay...I asked) to the turf several times. The refs halted action in the final half to call both coaches over and warn them about excessive checking and contact. They were talking to the Rutgers head coach while Kellie Young stood there shoeless and incredulous. I asked about the barefoot look...she had on heels earlier for Senior Day ceremonies. Those are tough  to run in...so I hear...and Coach gets in several miles a game on the sidelines.

Losing hurts, no doubt...but the Scarlet Knights seemed determined to deliver malicious, intentional stick swings and body slams against several Louisville players. That's not the way the game should be played and Julie Hermann would be well advised to take a look at the game film and pull scholarships from a couple of the Rutgers thugs.

Louisville returns to action Thursday against Marquette for the final home game of the 2014 season. First draw is 4 p.m.

Maybe someone will explain how Faye got the "Fabian" monicker then...my query about it to Coach Young got an eye-rolling response and the comment...

" They can be pretty goofy and silly at times. I don't know where they come up with this stuff..."

Stay goofy...girls. College goes by way too fast.

Goofy is forever.


*            *              *            *            *            *

Softball took a loss in the final game of the series against UCF Saturday...the major damage coming in the form of a grand slam home run during the sixth inning. Maryssa Becker had completed five innings of shutout softball before the Golden Knights big sixth inning. The scoreless game was changed to a 5-0 UCF lead when the Cards finally got their chance to bat in the top of the seventh.

Taner Fowler did get UofL on the board with a solo shot...her sixth of the year...but Louisville was unable to put anything else behind it and falls to 28-17 overall and 9-6 in AAC play. Fowler's fence-clearer was one of just five hits that the Cards produced on the day.

paulie

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Saturday Cardinal Couple -- Softball splits in Orlando...Lynx no lock for A-Tayy



SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Softball Cards split with UCF on Friday

- Lacrosse faces Rutgers today at LAX Stadium

- Minnesota Lynx -- just another challenge for Taylor

- Radio today


Louisville Softball won the opening game against UCF Friday but...in almost predictable fashion...dropped the nightcap against the Golden Knights. Louisville (28-16, 9-5) has had a habit of winning the first and falling in the second game of double headers this season.

The Cards have played two games in one day fifteen times this season. They've lost the second game ten of those times. The loss to UCF in the second game today also snapped the UofL eight-game winning streak.

LOUISVILLE 1 - UCF 0

The opener was a pitcher's duel...Maryssa Becker holding UCF scoreless and allowing just one hit in 4.1 innings as the starter. Rachel LeCoq provided the relief...tossing the final 2.2 innings and allowing just one hit.

The Cards finally put the scoreboard operator to work in the top of the seventh. Becker singled to right and advanced to third on a Taner Fowler double to center that barely missed leaving the ballpark. Maggie Ruckenbrod lifted a sacrifice fly to left that got Becker home for the lone score of the game.

UCF 3 - LOUISVILLE 2

Louisville took the early lead in the second contest when Becker powered an a bases-empty shot out of the facility in the second. It was her second home run of the season.

UCF used runs in the third and fourth inning to retake the lead off of LeCoq...and tallied an insurance run in the fifth.

The Cards tried to rally back in the sixth when Becker singled home pinch runner Jordan McNary to make it 3-2...but Louisville could not get Becker around the bases.

They'll play the finale of the series today at noon.

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The Louisville Lacrosse team looks to remain undefeated in BIG EAST play when they host Rutgers at 1 p.m. in the Lacrosse Stadium.

It's Senior Day and CAF Appreciation Day...so get out to the field early and sign up for stuff and watch the goodbye ceremonies for eight seniors.

The departing:

Hillary Bushway   M    Norfolk, VA
Jamie Redding     A    Victor, NY
Nikki Boltja         A     Medina, OH
Kelsey Garrity     D     Ridley Park, PA
Ashley Herbst      G    Pittsford, NY
Monica Negron    M     Bel Air, MD
Leslee Hefner      D     Hatboro, PA
Coleen O'Malley   M     Malvern, PA

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We're excited that A-Tayy (Asia Taylor) got drafted by the WNBA. As she said...just to have one's name in the discussion is pretty awesome. To hear it called on Draft Night ( even though it was on ESPNU) is even more awesome.

She's headed to the Minnesota Lynx. Yeah, the 2013 WNBA Champs. the Lynx that have 10 players returning from that team.

As least she won't have to worry about having to beat out Sugar Rodgers ( ex-Georgetown) for a spot. The second year Lynx guard was dealt to the New York Liberty Wednesday.

Here's the current 15 listed under the Lynx roster:

**   Seimone Augustus        8th year       LSU
**   Rebekkah Brunson       10th year      Georgetown
(R) Asya Bussie                  ( rookie)      West Virginia
(R) Christina Foggie           ( rookie)      Vanderbilt
**   Amber Harris               3rd year       Xavier
**   Rachel Jerry                1st year        - - - - - - - -
(R) Tricia Liston                ( rookie)       Duke
**   Janet McCarville          7th year       Minnesota
**   Lindsey Moore              1st year       Nebraska
**   Maya Moore                 3rd year       Connecticut
**   Devereaux Peters         2nd year       Notre Dame
(R) Asia Taylor                   ( rookie)       LOUISVILLE
**   Lindsay Whelan            10th year      Minnesota
--   Tan White                    9th year        Mississippi St.
**   Monica Wright              4th year        Virginia

**  =  returning player


A difficult task ahead for Taylor to grab one of these 11 or 12 jerseys for the 2014 season...but not impossible. She's one of seven front liners that will battle for a spot. One of four rookies that will be at the preseason games and practices.

The WNBA is all about salary caps. Teams are not required to carry a full 12 players. Whether Minnesota chooses to retain the roster that has gotten them two WNBA titles in the last three years or cut some costs and fill the bench with rookies remains to be seen.

In any event, A-Tayy will get her chance to make the team. We hope she shines...


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Cardinal Couple Radio Hour on Crescent Hill Radio is back on the air again this week. We learned the passcode to the studio door...so they can't stop us now!

We'll discuss softball, lacrosse, golf, hoops, fiscal responsibility and comparative political systems on today's show.

(OK maybe not the latter two...but it should be a good hour chalked full of exciting UofL women's sports news).

Join us, won't you?

LINK BELOW:

http://www.crescenthillradio.com



paulie

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Friday Cardinal Couple -- UConn? Be gone. Cards win 12-7



FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Faye Brust's five goals lead LAX Cards to 7th straight win

- Diamond to sparkle elsewhere. DeShields leaving UNC.

- Talk Derby to me



The UofL Lacrosse team comes up with a word at the start of each season. A word that embodies the tone, tenor and mission of the squad for the upcoming schedule.

This year's word is "Finish". The Cards did just that Thursday against the UConn Huskies LAX unit....winning 12-7 to remain atop the standings and undefeated in BIG EAST Conference play.

Faye Brust recorded a contest-high five goals in the win...in fact, it was Brust 4 - UConn 2 with 19:21 remaining in the first half. The Cards took a 7-5 halftime lead and held UConn scoreless for the first 23 minutes of the final half while building an 11-5 lead.

The game didn't quite start out to Louisville's expectations. Kaylin Morissette lost a rare draw control to begin the contest and the Huskies streaked down the field...Jacqueline Jordan flipping the ball by Louisville goalie Ashley Peacock just 10 seconds into the contest.

Peacock was making her first career start. The freshman recovered nicely, though , after lacrosse's version of running the opening kickoff back for a touchdown...

It only served to strengthen the Cards resolve. Brust got her first score with 28:16 left in the half. Two minutes later, she put the Cards ahead...off a nice assist from Jamie Redding. UConn tied the game with 24:11 left in action...but Brust was just getting started.

She scored unassisted four minutes later to give the Cards a 3-2 edge. Brust produced again with 19:21 to go to make it 4-2 UofL.

After the game Kaylin Morissette commented to me:

"I was aware she had all our scores and I told her after the fourth one...hey, if you want five...go for it and I'll do whatever I can to get the ball to you. She's an amazing player and I'm so fortunate to be able to play with her."

The Cards held UC scoreless for 13 minutes before Carly Palmucci got her first score of the contest to make it 4-3 with 13:01 on the clock. Nikki Boltja became the second Cardinal to score on a free position shot and Morissette decided to get in on the action next...receiving a feed from Anna Kopecka to make it 6-3 Louisville at the 5:50 mark.

UConn responded quickly...trimming the margin to two just 16 seconds later with Palmucci's second goal of the half. Boltja countered for the Cards on a unassisted shot on goal to push the Cards lead to 7-4. It looked like the half might end that way, but Karaline Smith got free on a drive and put the score at 7-5 with 24 seconds to go before the break.

Louisville held a 16-10 shot advantage over the Huskies after 30 minutes and had won eight of the 13 draw controls.

The Cards came out strong defensively in the final half. Boltja found Cortnee Daley with a pass three minutes into action and the sophomore found net to give Louisville a three point advantage. The Cardinal defense was denying anything UConn tried to do and Daley added her second goal of the clash with 14:44 displaying on the scoreboard.

Boltja gathered her second goal on a nice unassisted drive to make it 10-5 UofL with 9:19 to go and Morissette baffled the Husky defense with a free position score 90 seconds later.

The Huskies finally changed their total on the scoreboard with 7:12 left in action. Louisville had shut down the powerful UConn scoring machine for almost 23 minutes of action. The Cards kept the BIG EAST opponent quiet for another six minutes...Kacey Pippitt got her second score in a row with 1:35 to play to make it 11-7.

Louisville responded quickly...Morissette winning the draw control after goal...charging down the field and setting up Brust in just nine seconds for her fifth and final goal. 

A huge win for Kellie Young's crew and one that pretty much guarantees the Cards will be in this year's Lacrosse NCAA Big Dance and definitely assures they'll be in the BIG EAST Tournament. 

The Cards outshot the Storrs visitors 31-16 in front of a crowd of over 500 at the Louisville Lacrosse field. Louisville has only lost once at home in the last two years.

After the game, Kellie Young was exuberant and quite proud of her teams' effort.

"I'm so proud of the team effort we displayed today and these players who have come together and played so hard and so well this season. This win puts us in the NCAA Tournament."

Louisville, collectively, held the Huskies' top two scorers Katherine Finelston and Lauren Kahn scoreless for 60 minutes. Young was so involved in watching her teams' defensive sets in the first half that she was not aware until later in the contest that Brust has scored all of the first four Cardinal goals.

A beautiful, sunny 68 degree game conditions for the players as Louisville goes to 10-3 overall and 4-0 in the conference. Rutgers is next...on Saturday @ 1 p.m. It's CAF Appreciation Day and drawings and promotional items will be available for the fans.

It's also Senior Day. The Cards say goodbye to nine players...including Nikki Botja and Monica Negron.

Get out there. There's only two games left before the Cards embark to D.C. for the conference tournament. Help the Cards stay undefeated in BIG EAST play.

 Try Lacrosse.

You're gonna get hooked like we have here at CC...if you like non-stop action, great individual efforts and sudden and unexpected scoring.

Go.




StandingsConferencePct.GFGAOverallPct.GFGAHomeAwayNeutralLast 10Streak
Louisville 5-01.000803711-3.7862081194-07-30-08-2W 7
Georgetown 4-1.80064417-7.5001631483-44-20-14-6W 4
Connecticut 3-2.60055538-6.5711491434-33-31-07-3L 1
Temple 3-2.60057506-8.4291331515-41-40-04-6W 2
Rutgers 2-3.40059538-7.5331261445-43-30-05-5W 1
Villanova 2-3.40047597-7.5001341404-33-40-05-5L 2
Marquette 1-4.20042525-9.3571201613-22-70-03-7L 4
Cincinnati 0-5.00024836-9.4001251903-33-60-04-6L 6


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Cameron Crazies seek to reach out and touch the Diamond.
THE NEWS ABOUT DIAMOND DESHIELDS DECISION TO LEAVE NORTH CAROLINA AFTER A FRESHMAN SEASON THAT GOT THE TAR HEELS TO THE 'GREAT EIGHT' AND GOT HER NATIONAL FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR AWARD IS SURPRISING.

AFTER ALL, IT WAS DESHIELDS WHO GATHERED THREE OTHER TOP 25 PICKS IN THE CLASS OF 2013 AND BONDED THEM TOGETHER TO GO TO UNC. DIAMOND NEVER GOT A CHANCE TO ACTUALLY PLAY FOR SYLVIA HATCHELL...WHO WAS OUT THIS SEASON WITH LEUKEMIA.

WHERE WILL SHE GO? NOTHING OFFICIAL OUT OF HER YET ON THE NEW DESTINATION BUT SPECULATION AND RUMOR SAYS TENNESSEE IS A CANDIDATE. SHE WAS TRYING TO GET MERCEDES RUSSELL TO JOIN THE FOUR AT UNC TO CREATE ANOTHER 'FAB FIVE'...LADIES STYLE.

WHEREVER SHE GOES...ASSUMING IT WILL BE A D1 TRANSFER...SHE WILL HAVE TO SIT A YEAR. HMMMM...LOUISVILLE LOSES BRIA AND JUDE AFTER THIS SEASON...

NAH. FORGET ABOUT IT. DIAMOND HAS ISSUES WITH BEING COACHED. JEFF WALZ LIKES TO COACH.


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I've done a little Derby muddling over the past couple of days. Clear as mud. You can look at the horses I'm mulling
over at my seldom-used, highly overrated personal blog.

15 days to Derby.

http://pauliesykes.blogspot.com/

paulie


Thursday Cardinal Couple -- Lacrosse takes Big East Awards...More on Shoni...A'ja Wilson decides



THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Boltja, McNamara sweep BIG EAST Player awards

- Nice read on Shoni

- 2014 #1 recruit A'ja Wilson decides


Two Cards have taken the weekly BIG EAST Lacrosse awards


BIG EAST Women’s Lacrosse Offensive Player of the Week
Nikki Boltja, Louisville, Sr., A
Boltja led the offensive effort for the Cardinals, who outscored their opponents 31-15 in a 2-0 weekend. The senior registered four goals on six shots and an assist against Temple on Friday afternoon before exploding for a six-goal, two-assist showing against Villanova in Sunday’s weekend finale. The senior entered the week ranked third nationally in goals per game and jumped to No. 2 following her 10-goal week for a 4.0 goals per game average. Boltja’s eight points against the Wildcats is third-most in Louisville single-game history and is tied for the 2014 BIG EAST single-game high.

BIG EAST Women’s Lacrosse Defensive Player of the Week
Stephanie McNamara, Louisville, Fr., D
McNamara was tasked with marking two of the top offensive threats in the BIG EAST last week in Temple’s Jaymie Tabor and Villanova’s Chelsey Henderson, holding both without a point. The freshman held Tabor scoreless for the first time this season and Henderson just the second time in 2014 and first since Feb. 26 against nationally ranked Navy. Without goals from two of their main contributors, McNamara and the Louisville defense held Villanova and Temple below their season scoring averages in a pair of Cardinal wins last weekend.

Lacrosse plays the first of three at home today with a 4 p.m. start against UConn. The Huskies are in second place in the BIG EAST standings behind Louisville.



StandingsConferencePct.GFGAOverallPct.GFGAHomeAwayNeutralLast 10Streak
Louisville 4-01.000683010-3.7691961123-07-30-08-2W 6
Connecticut 3-1.75048418-5.6151421314-33-21-07-3W 1
Georgetown 3-1.75051396-7.4621501462-44-20-14-6W 3
Villanova 2-2.50045467-6.5381321274-33-30-05-5L 1
Temple 2-2.50046435-8.3851221445-40-40-04-6W 1
Rutgers 1-3.25044477-7.5001111385-42-30-04-6L 1
Marquette 1-3.25035415-8.3851131503-12-70-04-6L 3
Cincinnati 0-4.00018686-8.4291191753-23-60-05-5L 5

Get out to the Louisville Lacrosse field today to support your LAX Cards. Admission is free.

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If you're like us here at CARDINAL COUPLE, you can never get enough news and articles about Shoni Schimmel. The link below has a nice take on Shoni and her future in the WNBA. 

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/04/15/sports/basketball/schimmel-brings-flair-and-pride-in-heritage-to-wnba.html?referrer=

The buzz since Monday night has been about Shoni teaming up with Angel and also about Nita and Asia getting selected
for the WNBA.

Here's a couple of things you may have not known about the WNBA:

1) All rookies that make teams get $52,000 a year. That's not guaranteed, either. You get paid weekly. If you get cut or dropped by a team during the season...your paycheck stops also. Just because you get drafted doesn't mean you are guaranteed to make the team either.

2) WNBA teams will be allowed to have 12 players on the roster this season, but there is a salary cap in place also...so if a team has several high-salaried stars...they may only carry 9 or 10 players to stay under the cap.

3) A player can not play in the WNBA until they have been out of high school for four years. No "one and dones" in this league. I like it. It stresses the importance of getting the four years of college and a degree.

We wish Shoni, Nita and Asia all the best in "the league" and hope they are around for a long time. Long enough to make....one million dollars!

*            *            *            *            *             *              *

The #1 ranked player in the class of 2014 high school basket ball seniors has made her mind up on where she's attending college to play ball and....surprise, surprise!!!...it's NOT CONNECTICUT.

A'ja Wilson will stay at home and attend South Carolina. A nice "get" for Dawn Staley...the 6'5" Wilson is a game changer and will make an immediate impact for the Gamecocks and in the SEC....if Staley uses her wisely and doesn't let her languish on the bench like Holly Warlick did with Mercedes Russell this year.


Congratulations, Ms.Wilson! We're glad you didn't fall for all the UConn hype and arrogance and we're also glad you're in the SEC...(we like it when teams there make acquisitions that will help them beat Kentucky.) The only thing better would be having you at Louisville in the ACC.

paulie






 




     


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wednesday Cardinal Couple -- Attendance and WBB


 
WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE
 
TODAY'S CARDINAL COUPLE IS FROM COLUMNIST SANDY WALKER. ALTHOUGH SHE
HAS BEEN ON HIATUS RECENTLY FROM REGULAR COLUMN CONTRIBUTIONS...SHE WAS
WITH US IN THE BEGINNING AND STILL STAYS IN TOUCH WITH THE STAFF VIA E-MAILS.
SHE HAS ALWAYS PROVIDED US WITH A GENUINE AND CLEAR DESCRIPTION OF HER POSITION ON VARIOUS ISSUES AND WE GREATLY APPRECIATE TODAY'S OBSERVATION.
 
WE HAVE CHOSEN TO RUN HER COMMENTARY IN ITS ENTIRETY AND WELCOME YOUR RESPONSES AND DISCUSSION OF IT IN OUR COMMENTS SECTION OR BY E-MAIL TO US AT:
 
 
WITH NO FURTHER ADIEU, HERE'S SANDY'S PIECE:
 
 
 
 
As a lifelong player, coach and supporter of women’s basketball it is without pleasure that I predict that without a change, history will show this decade to be looked upon as the coming of another dark age in collegiate women's basketball.  I fear that its growth in popularity will show stagnation due to the continued disparity between the University of Connecticut and the remaining teams.    I truly believe that it is not good for the game as fans do not continue watching contests which are blow outs game after game and year after year.  It also has become increasingly difficult to justify the situation to potential when trying to attract new fans.  We can point out that the “one and done” of the men’s game stops the situation from occurring which now exists in the women’s game but valid explanations do not offset the boredom of  watching the non-competitive games.

 

We absolutely want the women’s game to lead to graduations of the players and that should not change, but the current situation is not just bad for other teams but it appears that it is also not a positive for Connecticut either.  Depending upon how the numbers are crunched it appears that attendance even at UConn is declining (See The Hartford Courant's March 19, 2012  article by Jeff Jacobs: Drop In Women's Tourney Attendance...) http://articles.courant.com/2012-03-19/sports/hc-jacobs-column-0319-20120319_1_geno-auriemma-uconn-women-uconn-figures which if these statistics hold true would be of no surprise as I and my friends find monotonous lop-sided games to be very difficult to watch as the lack of a competitive atmosphere is just not enjoyable.  

 

The beginning of this decade found the sport continuing to grow in popularity with a ongoing influx of first time fans, including player’s boyfriends and adult men, discovering the women's game.    In order to continue the uptick pattern the sport must produce a competitive and enjoyable product that is without a pre-ordained year after year winner.

 

Women’s basketball survived the dominance of Tennessee as it was less of a detriment than the current situation with UConn for it was during a period where Tennessee's skill level brought first time media and fans outside of Tennessee attention to the game.   Tennessee's dominance included a period of time where, despite the passage of Title IX in the 1970's, many college women were happy that their school fielded a team at all, much less a nationally competitive one so their dominance was less of an issue than it is today. 

 

Earlier years showed most women's team audiences to be primarily composed of relatives, friends and local community supporters who did not quit following the game when their team did not perform at levels where rankings were of concern.  This is not true in today's world where potential fans have many choices of events and sports to either attend or view through their electronics.   To keep their attention a good entertainment product is a requirement that repetitive 25 point wins do not provide as was exhibited by a friend who annually attends the final 4 games decision to depart very early from this year’s championship game. 

 

The NCAA and others are looking in many directions to find ways to not only maintain current fan interest but also to again grow the game.   Even with many reviews and adjustments by the NCAA, in reality I believe the direction of this decade's women's college basketball is in the hands of today's high school players and their parents.  Will too many of the top high school players continue down the well trodden automated path and choose to become another cog in the UConn  machine or instead will they choose the path less traveled where break out stars ( where as examples) North Carolina's Diamond DeShields, and Delaware’s Elena Delle Donne can forever be known for putting their school back into conversation, excitement and national title hunt.  
 
Only history will tell but I believe that more parity in the sport is desperately needed or many of our current and potential future fans will look elsewhere for events which are less predictable. 

 
Sandy W.


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WE ALSO WANTED TO RUN THIS PICTURE OF MY LONGTIME BUDDY "BIG AL"...REPRESENTING IN HIS CARDINAL COUPLE SHIRT. LOOKING GOOD, AMIGO!

 
 
 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tuesday Cardinal Couple - Shoni Picked 8th...Nita and Asia selected also in WNBA Draft

TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


JEFF MCADAMS BRINGS US WNBA, LACROSSE, TENNIS AND SOFTBALL NEWS IN THE TUESDAY EDITION OF CARDINAL COUPLE

 

Shoni Schimmel Going to Atlanta


In what may be nearly a dream, if you'll pardon the pun, for Louisville Women's Basketball fans, Shoni Schimmel was picked eighth in the WNBA draft by the Atlanta Dream.  She will be...barring trades...playing with another Louisville great, Angel McCoughtry.

Nita Slaughter was selected in the third round...35th. overall by the Los Angeles Sparks. The final pick of the draft was Asia Taylor...the Columbus native was 36th and is headed to the Minnesota Lynx.

With two of the Louisville Women's Basketball greats playing for the Dream, what are the best opportunities to see them play?  The closest WNBA franchise to Louisville is the Indiana Fever.  The Dream will be playing in Indianapolis at the Banker's Life Fieldhouse, the home court of the Fever, on Saturday May 17th at 7pm, Sunday June 29th at 6pm, and Saturday July 12th at 7pm.  For our Oregon readers, the closest franchise would be Seattle.  There is only one Dream game this season in Seattle on Thursday August 7th at 7pm (PDT).

Tickets are (at the time of this writing) readily available for the first game at Banker's Life starting at $30 and topping out at $76.95 (halfcourt, 6th row).

Previous University of Louisville WNBA Draft Picks:  2009 WNBA Draft – Angel McCoughtry (1st Pick, Atlanta Dream); Candyce Bingham (39th Pick, San Antonio Silver Stars); 2003 WNBA Draft - Lori Nero (19th Pick, Houston Comets); 2000 WNBA Draft – Jill Morton (34th Pick, Charlotte Sting).

Tennis Seeded 4th

Earning a 4th seed in The American Conference Tennis championship means that Louisville gets a
first round bye and won't play until Friday the 18th.  The doubles matches will start at noon against Rutgers.

With Tennis scheduling being a bit odd, the Cardinals only had three conference matches all season, but we did indeed play Rutgers for one of them.  On February 21st, UofL beat Rutgers 6-1, taking all three doubles matches and winning all but one of the singles matches in the convincing win.

Assuming we defeat Rutgers, we will match up with the winner of match 3 which will be Houston, Cincinnati, or UConn.  Houston is the number 1 seed in the tournament and receives the bye to play the winner of the first round match between 8 seed Cincinnati and 9 seed UConn.

Lacrosse Polls

Despite two very good wins this week in Philadelphia vs Temple and Villanova, Louisville Lacrosse didn't advance in the polls.  To be fair, though, even at 19th, Louisville is getting into the rarefied air of the Lacrosse world with Albany, Virginia, and Penn State being the next three teams ahead of the Cards.

The current polls do a great job of showing just how tough the competition in the ACC next year will be, with the top three spots, as well as sixth, eighth, tenth and 17th all being held by current ACC schools.  The top spot is held by current ACC school Maryland, but of course they will be moving on to the Big 10 next year.

Softball Picking up Steam

With some good wins of late, Softball seems to be picking up some steam.

 No Louisville players picked up player of the week honors this week, but freshman pitcher Maryssa Becker, and senior second baseman Katie Keller continue to get attention from the conference office by making the honor roll.

Maryssa Becker picked up two wins in the circle.  Katie Keller batted .600 in the four games UofL played this week, while also having a .532 on-base percentage.

The Cards take a road trip to Orlando this weekend for AAC Conference action.

jeffmcadams