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Friday, June 24, 2011

Lady Cards rule UK in Governor's Cup...We look back at...Churchill Downs to race tonight.

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FRIDAY @ CARDINAL COUPLE:

-Cardinal women sweep Wildcats in Governor's Cup

-We look back at.....UofL 85- Xavier 75

-Churchill Downs to race this evening

The University of Louisvile and the University of Kentucky's women's sports programs went head to head in nine different sports over the 2010-11 athletic season. The clear winner? Louisville who won seven of the events straight up, split one and lost one. The recaps:

Basketball
Louisville got 26 points from freshman Shoni Schimmel and 21 from guard Becky Burke in a 78-52 romp over the Cats in the KFC YUM! Center. Victoria Dunlap may have been the best player on the court going into the contest...but the game belonged to the Louisville defense. LOUISVILLE

Cross Country
The women's squads matched up in the NCAA Southeast Regional and it was close...the Cards finishing in 13th. place and UK running to a 14th. place finish.  LOUISVILLE

Soccer
The Cards blanked UK 2-0 in Cardinal Park on Sept. 9th....getting goals from Angelika Uremovich and Catlin Rehder. Goalie Taylor Vancil had seven saves in the whitewash. LOUISVILLE

Track and Field
The teams met four times during the season...at the Kentucky Invitational, the Rod McCravy Invitational in Lexington and in the NCAA Indoor Championships. Team totals were not kept for the first two events, so we'll go the the NCAA event...where Louisville finished 30th.with six points and UK failed to score. LOUISVILLE. The teams met again later in the season during the outdoor season at the NCAA Outdoor Championships and Louisville finished 44th. , UK 60th, LOUISVILLE

Swimming/Diving
The squads met in Lexington in a dual meet and the Cardinal women swimmers splashed their way to a convincing 186-114 victory. Therese Bergstrom won the 100m and 200m breaststroke and Raine Thompson the 100m and 200m butterfly. LOUISVILLE

Softball
The Cards blanked the Cats 6-0 at Ulmer Stadium in the first of two meet ups this past season. UK took the second in Lexington, though... a slug fest that ended 14-8 in favor of the Cats. TIE

Volleyball
This one went down to the wire in Lexington...UK defeating the Cards in five sets 14-25, 25-19, 25-22, 25-27, 15-10. UofL was on the verge of elimination in the fourth game but forced the fifth match before a rowdy UK crowd of almost 3,000 in quaint Memorial Coliseum. KENTUCKY

Golf
The two teams were up against each other in the NCAA East Regional and Louisville finished 12th...28 strokes better than UK, who ended up 20th. LOUISVILLE.

As you can see by the recaps above, there is no doubt about which school had the superior women's athletic program in 2010-11. Congratulations to ALL the hard working Cardinal athletes and go for back-to- back wins in the upcoming season, girls.

(Thanks to LSR for the data)

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The mood in the Cintas Center before the UofL vs. Xavier game was a study in two different mindsets. I watched the teams warm up and the Cardinal players were loose, relaxed...joking around and smiling. On the other end of the court, the Lady Musketeers were all business, grimly going through their drills and dead serious. They knew they had a lot to either gain or lose in the upcoming game and... as the favorites...the pressure was on.

The Xavier personnel that were manning the media break rooms and security were a friendly bunch of folks two nights earlier when Louisville defeated Vanderbilt and Xavier rolled by South Dakota State. There was a little more intensity for this one...they were anxious about the upcoming show.

Did someone say "Show"? Yes, there was quite a show that night and it came from the dead-eye shooting of Shoni Schimmel, who chalked up 33 points on the, at times, bewildered Xavier defense. This was not the same Louisville tea that had lost to Xavier by a dozen in November.

The Cards contained twin towers Amber Harris and TaShia Phillips early and zipped out to and early 18-11 lead...Schimmel hitting her first four shots of the game.Xavier wasn't about to see their 25 home game win streak go down without a fight, though...and responded with a 13-0 run to take a 30-23 lead. The twin towers found their touch late in the half and Xavier took at 40-37 lead into the locker room after 20 minutes of action.

The teams battled on and were tied in the second half 42-42 when Xavier three point specialist Katie Rutan got hot and nailed three long range bombers...part of an Xavier run that had them up 67-58. Louisville fans were getting very nervous.

Time for "the Show" again. Louisville went on a 13-4 run and tied the contest at 71-71 on a Schimmel three. Undaunted, she came down court again and nailed a spectacular three in front of me on press row to give Louisville a 74-71 lead. The Cintas Center was filled with screaming Cardinal fans and Xavier never challenged the rest of the way....Louisville getting some clutch play and free throw shooting from freshman guard Charmaine Tay to seal the victory. Final: Louisville 85 - Xavier 75.

Schimmel was modest after the contest about her performance.

"I don't think it was about me. I think it was about our team. All the way, we were like 'OK, we've got this.'"

And the Cards did have it, stunning the #2 seed in the regional and earning the Sweet Sixteen berth. Head Xavier coach Kevin McGuff summed it up this way:

"Shoni Schimmel was amazing tonight. Probably the most impressive thing was the poise she had down the stretch for a freshman. Not just because she made shots, but she kept her team together to execute."

Or as Tia Gibbs said:

'That's why we call her "Show". When it's a big stage and a big crowd, she's going to put on a show just like she did tonight."

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Despite storms and tornadoes that damaged five barns on the backside of Churchill Downs Wednesday night, Friday night racing will go on as scheduled. First race is scheduled for 6 p.m. and gates open at 4 p.m. Still shaking my head over the fact that no horses or humans were injured in the blast from Mother Nature. Still a lot of clean up to do back in the barn area.

Our favorite trainer at the track, Paul McGee commented on the wild Wednesday night.

"It's unreal. I got real lucky. It (the tornado) bounced right over the top of my barn."

A large section of the roof from Jinx Fires barn landed in front of McGee's barn. About 100 horses were displaced from the tornado and about 70 remained on the facilities...the other being shipped to stable at Keeneland.

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