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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sparks spank Lynx...Ballard, PRP advance in girls softball...Ky. All-Stars to scrimmage twice

SLEEP IN...IT'S SATURDAY AT CARDINAL COUPLE!

Maya Moore's debut in the
WNBA a losing one...but she
led all scorers with 21 points.
-Parker leads Sparks past Lynx in WNBA season opener

-Ballard, PRP headed to the Sweet Sixteen

-Ky. Girls All-Stars will scrimmage twice

The WNBA season kicked off last night with the LA Sparks vs.
Minnesota Lynx. Candace Parker vs. Maya Moore. For awhile, it looked like the Maya Moore show, with the Lynx leading by 10 in the third quarter.

Then, the queen of the league took the throne and the promising princess learned that UConn success doesn't always translate into WNBA wins.
Spurred by three straight Noelle Quinn three's and a Parker layup, the Sparks used a 11 point run late in the third to take a 59-57 lead and never looked back. The 82-74 win was largely led by the hot-shooting Quinn and Parker's 19 points.

Candace Parker, sidelined last year with a shoulder injury and subsequent operation, is back. The WNBA should be plenty worried....

The Atlanta Dream gets their season underway Sunday at 3 p.m..hosting the New York Liberty. Kia Vaughn vs. Angel McCoughtry. All we need is C Viv. Stringer on the sidelines scowling and Jeff Walz in his black sweater vest....OOPS, check that...Angel is day-to-day with the knee sprain and probably won't play.

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Sara Hammond will lead the
Kentucky All-Stars against
the Indiana All-Stars.
The Kentucky All-Star Girls will have a couple of scrimmages next week before taking on the Hoosiers. They'll face two talented groups of Kentucky junior all-stars....Tuesday at Eastern High School and Wednesday at Mercer County. The Tuesday face-off will feature juniors from around the Louisville area and standouts April Wilson, Christine Roush and Sydney Moss will lead the juniors against the seniors. The Wednesday scrimmage will pit talented juniors Bre Elder, Sydney Brown and Megan Pittman on the junior squad against the All-Star team. The 12 who will represent Kentucky in the annual clash against Indiana are listed below with college choices beside their names.

#1 Sara Hammond (UofL)
#2 Carla Booth (Eastern Kentucky)
#3 Averee Fields (West Virginia)
#4 Danay Fothergill (Western Kentucky)
#5 Chastity Gooch (Western Kentucky)
#6 Natallie Greenwell (Morehead State)
#7 Mechael Guess (Pittsburgh-volleyball)
#8 Juliann Miller (Evansville)
#9 Maddie Peabody (Lafayette)
#10 Caprisha Rogers (Wallters State)
#11 Kristen Stanback (Austin Peay)
#12 Lauren Tibbs (Marquette)

WE think this group has an excellent chance to sweep the Hoosier in the two contests next weekend. Hammond, Fields, Tibbs and Greenwell are all quality DI prospects who will  have a major impact at their future colleges. Mecheal Guess is a leaper who will play volleyball at Pitt...but don't be surprised if Pitt women's basketball coach Agnus Berenato isn't hanging around the locker room with a basketball practice jersey in hand for Guess....

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Louisville PRP and Louisville Ballard have emerged victorious from the softball regionals and will be two of the sixteen teams to compete in the state Girls softball tournament in Owensboro beginning next Thursday.
Ballard punched their ticket with a 9-1 rout of Eastern to win the 7th region...but their biggest win might have been the day before when the upended perennial softball power Mercy Academy to reach the finals.

PRP won a 7-6 thriller to earn the 6th region title and trip to state over Butler. The Butler Bears had the bases loaded, no outs in the bottom of the seventh but relief pitcher Savannah Mercer pitched her way out of the jam...which ended with a spectacular double play when Baleigh Bell flied out to left with one out and pinch runner Destinei Hollis was thrown out at the plate after tagging for the final out.

Softball enthusiast Ken Richards was at the game and told CARDINAL COUPLE:

"(Left fielder) Rachel Fox fired a perfect throw from left to nail Hollis at the plate. I feel bad for the Butler girls...but it seemed to me that Hollis got a jump on the attempt to score...leaving the bag before the ball to Fox was caught."

The Panthers will face Montgomery County in the first round of the Sweet Sixteen at 5 p.m. Thursday. Ballard gets Letcher County Central at 7 p.m.
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