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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Lady Cards end season with 7 point loss 76-69

. SUNDAY (and snow!) . . @ Cardinal Couple . . . -Vandersloot's play too much for Louisville to overcome. . . -Quotes and comments . . -Cards loss by the numbers . . -Watson reflects on the game, season . . -Softball splits on Saturday . . The numbers for Courtney Vandersloot pretty much explain why the Louisville women's basketball team fell short Saturday night in Spokane. Vandersloot did to Louisville pretty much what she's been doing to competition all season. 29 points in 39 minutes. 8 for 10 shooting from the field and 12-14 from the foul line. She took and made more free throws than the entire Louisville team. She also had five rebounds, seven assists and seven steals . . "She's a really nice player." Louisville head coach Jeff Walz commented after the game. "Where she really hurt us was with the steals." What also hurt Louisville was Monique Reid hobbling off the court with 18:26 left in the first half and the game tied 2-2. Reid actually suffered the groin injury before the game during warmups while stretching, tried to go, but couldn't. The injury occurred 30 minutes before tip-off . . "I heard a pop in my hamstring. It was my groin. I tried to go, but I just couldn't." the sophomore from Fern Creek commented. . Walz reaction to the injury was different, to say the least. "I tell everyone that warmups are great but for any of you that have dogs, I have yet to see a dog stretch before chasing a **** car. I don't know why we have to stretch so much. I mean, that dog just takes off sprinting and he seems to be OK." . . (WE actually had a Yorkie once that pulled a leg muscle chasing a cat. He lept off the porch in pursuit and gave a yelp...hobbling to a stop. He wasn't a prolific scorer, though and couldn't post up. No warm up, either.) . . . Walz reflected on the Cards final game... "We didn't make it a very good TV game. I hope the viewers didn't turn it off.... For 10 minutes, we played really good basketball. But when we cut it to three, we never got it to one. We never got it to where the next shot really mattered to them..and we had our chances." . Finally, we'll agree with the summations of sophomore Tia Gibbs. "We dug ourselves a hole, but we tried to fight back . One thing we don't do is quit." Gibbs remarked. "We kept fighting till the end." The Zags get Stanford Monday night in the Spokane Regional final, who outlasted North Carolina 72-66. . . ************************************************************************************ . . . Louisville shot 44.8% in the game (30-67) and 54.3% in the second half. The Zags countered with 43.9% (23-57) and just 37% in the second half. 3 point range was a blur for Louisville...going 25% (4-16). Schimmel was (2 for 10) and Gibbs (2 for 4). Gonzaga 2 for 7 past the arc. Free throws were the key here...Louisville getting only nine attempts and hitting five and Gonzaga going 24-28. . For Louisville, Schimmel led the way scoring with 18 points in 37 minutes. She had two at halftime. Keisha Hines had an impressive final game in a Cardinal uniform with 17 points, and six rebounds. Tia Gibbs had 16 points on 7 for 13 shooting and Asia Taylor recorded a double-double with 10 points and 12 boards. Charmaine Tay tallied four points, Reid had two before she left and Sherrone Vails two in five minutes. Becky Burke, Shelby Harper and Antonita Slaughter all played but failed to score for the Cards. . The Cards won the battle of the boards 40-33, thanks to the strong effort of Taylor. Louisville did have 19 turnovers (10 in the first half) compared to just 13 for the Bulldogs. Louisville had 13 assists, Gonzaga 12 and the Zags pilfered the ball 13 times (Vandersloot 7) compared to 8 Louisville steals. but Louisville's freshmen accounted for 24 of the 69 points. They grabbed 8 of the 40 boards and went 11-30 from the field. Besides Schimmel's 37 minutes...Tay logged 30, Vails five and Slaughter four. . . ************************************************************************************ . . . David Watson reflects on the loss...and the season. I won't be disparaging or critical as Louisville exits from the Big Dance. Basically, this one was over when Monique Reid, Teena Murray and Amy Meadows went to the locker room after a minute plus of action. Exit the leading scorer and calming influence and exit the Cards chances of winning. Great rally, granted and Keisha Hines gave it her all in her Cardinal swan song, but take those 16 points a game out of the equation and you get a Cardinal team flying without one of their wings. Ironic that the very thing that made Cardinal basketball less that prolific last year (injuries) rose up last night and sealed the Cards fate again. . . You can talk about how you have to go with the players out there, how one player doesn't make a team and toss in any other cliches you want. It DID matter last night. Without the inside force of Mo..the Lady Cards were a no go. Sure Taylor, Hines and company tried to pick up the slack. They did a credible job. Gotta wonder how many of those wild, forced shots that "Showtime" Schimmel shot in the first half might have been passes to Reid? "Showtime" was one of the 'not ready for prime time' players for the first twenty Saturday night (Apologies to Chevy Chase, Bill Murray and the rest of the SNL crew). . . But, it was a season to remember and one that provided a lot of fun and excitement for Lady Cards fans. These girls improved dramatically as the season progressed and with all but Keisha returning, they'll be a great team in 2012. Huge wins over Kentucky, Xavier, Vandy and DePaul will be remembered by me for quite some time. The future is so bright for this bunch that I recommend everyone go out and buy window blinds and shades. (My nephew is in the window treatment business. A shameless plug here). Walz has the keys to a powerful vehicle here. Low mileage, high dynamics and rave reviews from the season ticket holders who've taken test drives. Let's hope he can continue to put the pedal to the metal and live life in the fast (break) lane. . . We appreciate all the commentary and reports that David Watson has provided this season. His insights and views are always entertaining and informative and we look forward to his take on Cardinal hoops when the gals hit the floor in November. Until then... Gracias, amigo and buenas suerte! . . .************************************************************************************ . . Louisville softball split a double header at Ulmer Stadium Saturday afternoon with Villanova, losing the opener 3-1 and taking the second 5-3. . The Cards ran into a strong pitching performance in Game 1 from Nova's Molly Manning, who fanned five and allowed only four Louisville hits. . Louisville opened the game with a triple from Jennifer Esteban but Manning fanned the next three Cardinals to grab a bat. Nova got on the board in the third 1-0, pounding Cardinal starter Caralisa Connell for three hits, but Louisville rallied to tie it in the third when Hannah Kiyohara reached on an error and scored on a Katie Keller sacrifice fly. Freshmen stepping up big for the Cards... . . Nova took the lead for good in the fourth inning with a walk and single. They added an insurance run in the top of the seventh. Louisville could not rally in the bottom of the seventh. . . The Cards watched Nova take an early lead in the second game 1-0 in the first inning but Louisville tied it up in the third behind the freshmen again. Kiyohara singled and scored on a Keller double. The Wildcats regained the lead 3-1 in the top of the fourth, thanks to a two run homer off of Connell by Kristi Burlin. . Louisville roared back in the bottom of the fourth with four runs, though. With two outs, Kristin Austin singled, advanced on Maggie Ruckenbrod's single and Esteban singled to fill the bases. A walk to Keller sent Austin to the plate and all three remaining base runners scored when Alicja Wolny pounded a deep double to right field. Connell held the Wildcats scoreless the rest of the way. . . Connell pitched all 14 innings for Louisville yesterday, no word on why Tori Collins never toed the mound. The teams play the rubber match today at 1 p.m. . We're not sure what got into the formatting for today's articles and we're sorry that it's tough to read with everything piled up on top of each other. WE suspect those darn chimps...WE always do... .. ..

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