CARDINAL COUPLE WEDNESDAY
-Atlanta knocks off Indiana 92-90
-WE look at...Charmaine Tay.
|Sancho saves another one for Atlanta|
Louisville's Angel McCoughtry led all scorers with 28 points. The Dream improves to 16-13 with the win and is arguably the hottest team in the WNBA as the league rolls into its final few games before the playoffs begin.
Atlanta led 23-19 after the first quarter but found themselves trailing by three at halftime in Philips Arena. Indiana (19-10) still held a 73-69 advantage as the teams went into the final quarter. Other Dream scorers in double figures were Price with 16, Lyttle...who had 14 points and 11 boards and Lindsey Harding with 11.
Atlanta plays Washington back-to-back next...at the Mystics on Thursday 9/1 and back in Atlanta on Friday 9/2.
(Thanks to the several readers who corrected us on the game location. We have demoted Co-Co from proof-reader/fact-checker and sent her back to banana inventory responsibilities...which is probably a huge mistake.)
WE'VE been looking at some of the Lady Cards on Jeff Walz's roster for the 2011-12 season and today we turn our attention to sophomore guard Charmaine Tay. One of the top five in the state of New Jersey at Bloomfield Tech her senior year, Tay headed to Louisville as part of the highly regarded and ranked 2010 recruiting class. Out of the six girls that arrived on the UofL campus in the fall of 2010, we'd say that Tay's performance over the 2010-11 season was second best...behind Shoni Schimmel's electrifying freshman year.
Tay came off the bench for 30 games for Louisville last year...averaging 3.4 points per game and 15.6 minutes of playing time. It wasn't till the end of the Lady Cards season, though...that Tay's impact really began to be felt. Without a doubt, her steady point guard control and free throw shooting helped seal the win over Xavier in the NCAA Tournament. A strong performance in the NCAA game against Vanderbilt preceded that and quality minutes and nine points against Notre Dame in the BIG EAST Tournament showed Cardinal fans that she was a fearless and capable point guard who had no fears in driving to the basket or setting up her teammates .
Freshmen respond in different ways to their first year of college basketball. Some are like Shoni Schimmel, who come charging out of the blocks like Tyson Gay and never slow down. Others take time to develop, discover their roles on a team and fulfill them. Some realize that what they thought might happen isn't going to and they move on to a different venue to achieve their dreams. In Charmaine's case, the learning curve took a little time to develop...but once it did, Cardinal fans discovered a talented and fearless point guard who you wanted directing from the point late in tight game situations.
|Charmaine Tay will battle for a point guard role.|
How will it translate to the upcoming season? Obviously, the guard positions at UofL have more depth and options than a kid in a superstore candy outlet or the menu at Wendy's.
Playing time on Denny Crum Court is going to be earned by hustle, defense and play making abilities...especially when rugged BIG EAST conference play rolls around in January.
Early on - especially against some of the weaker opponents on Louisville's non-conference schedule - Cardinal fans will see a myriad of player combinations and situations as Coach Walz formulates a blueprint that will ensure success against Connecticut, Rutgers, Notre Dame and DePaul. A capable, productive point guard that can feed the many scoring options on the court and that can create opportunities on defense and in the transition game will be a priority. WE expect that patrons in the KFC YUM Center seats will see plenty of Tay, Jude, Bria, Shoni and even Shelby early on...directing the offense and vying for court time. It may end up being a case where no one player gains a distinct advantage of the others at point guard...but Charmaine Tay certainly has displayed the skills and talent to try and claim the title. We'll look for consistency and chemistry out of whoever guides the ball across the timeline...and if Tay can build upon her season-ending accolades...don't be surprised to see her on the court in the late season battles that lay ahead for the Lady Cards.
Louisville will depend heavily on the "Sho and Mo Show" this season...and Cierra Warren looks to be the beast of the post. Asia Taylor had an impressive Canadian trip and has proven she can rebound and score..but, remember...someone will need to dish, distribute and create scoring opportunities for the terrific three & the talented Taylor. Charmaine Tay has her application in for that position. Let's see how she does.