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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cards fall to Irish in Volleyball...Women's hoops today in KFC YUM Center...Football wins!...Pitino's guys defeat Xavier...

SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE COMIN' AT YA!!!

-Irish pull off the upset in Volleyball

-Xavier facing Lady Cards today in WBB

-Freaky play ends football game

-Pitino's guys win in Indy.

Louisville Volleyball ended their run in the BIG EAST Tournament yesterday by falling to Notre Dame 25-22, 22-25, 25-21, 25-19 yesterday in Milwaukee.

The Cards got a great performance from Lola Arslanbekova, who had 24 kills in the four game match...but she couldn't carry the weight by herself and Notre Dame moves on to the championship to face Cincinnati...who downed Marquette in five games.

The teams were evenly matched in game one until the Irish went on a 4-0 run to lead 14-10.  Louisville tied it at 15-15 and 17-17 and was down by two at 24-22 when a flip by the Irish found unguarded wood and they won by three.


The Cards failed to
win the BIG EAST
volleyball championship
yesterday  
Louisville took control early in game two, up 7-2...but saw Notre Dame rally to take the lead by expand it to five at 22-17. After a timeout, though...the Cards ran off eight unanswered points to win the second game by three.

The Cards came out strong in game three, led 8-3, but could not keep up the defense and the Irish tied it at nine all. The teams were tied at 18 and 20 before ND ran off five of the final six points to win game three and take a 2-1 match lead.

Louisville never led in the fourth game, falling behind early 4-1. The Irish ran that up to 12-7 before the Cards rallied to draw close at 16-14. At 18-17, Louisville looked to still have a chance of forcing a fifth game...but a 7-2 closing run by ND ended game and match.

Despite the loss, the Cards should still make the NCAA Tournament, since they won the regular season BIG EAST title. They have one more regular season game...a match-up against OVC Champ Morehead State on Saturday. The NCAA pairings will be announced next Sunday.

******************************************************************

KFC YUM! Center is the place for the 2 p.m. tip off today...featuring the Lady Cards women's basketball team against Xavier. This is not the same Muskie team that Louisville defeated in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Gone are starters Special Jennings, Amber Harris, Ta'Shia Phillips and head coach Kevin McGuff.

Amy Waugh (left) leads the Musketeers now and the Tyeasha Moss is the scoring threat.

Xavier is 1-1 on the year...handling EKU 66-61 but falling on the road to Mississippi State 71-65. Moss, a senior, is averaging 18 a game and is joining in double figures by junior Jessica Pachko (12 ppg) and sophomore Lynette Holmes (11.5 ppg).

For Louisville, Cierra Warren has a 15 point per game average after three games and Bria Smith is knocking in 13 point a game. Shoni Schimmel (12.0) and Becky Burke (11.3) are also in double figures.

Louisville will need Asia and the "bigs"
to crash the boards today. Do it, #31!
Xavier will try to keep this one from becoming a track meet this afternoon...so the Cards will need to be able to work effectively out of the half court set and go to the boards strong. Louisville's love for the helter-skelter fast break transition offense can only happen if Warren, Asia Taylor, Sara Hammond and the rest of the bigs go to the boards well when the Muskies miss shots. Louisville's ability to block out and score inside could spell the difference today. The Cards must also try to get off to a faster start today than they have over the first three games of the year.

Xavier has gone extensively with a three guard set this year, so the Cards will need to make sure that they are on guard with good play from the Schimmels, Smith, Burke and Harper.

No word on Monique Reid and her availability for today's game yet...as coach Walz is fond of saying...'need to worry about the ones who can play and coach them up'. Mo will come back when she's ready and will be spectacular when she does.

******************************************************************

Congratulations to both football and men's hoops for wins yesterday. The Pitino guys went to historic Hinkle Fieldhouse on the Butler University campus and downed the Bulldogs 69-53...Kyle Kuric with 17 for Louisville....

Charlie Strong's football guys got their 6th win of the season at Connecticut...downing the Huskies 34-20. Craziness on the final play of the game. After Connecticut scored to make it 28-20 and then recovered an on-side kick to get the ball back, they come out on offense and run a play where they try to advance the ball with a series of backwards passes and laterals...going in the wrong direction until Louisville intercepts one of the attempts and returns it for a touchdown.

Reminded us of the Three Stooges on the field...

Louisville is now bowl eligible with the win and actually has a shot of winning the BIG EAST Conference and getting the BCS bid...but a lot of things would have to happen for that to occur...the main one being that the Cards would have to win in Tampa next Saturday against South Florida...a place where Louisville has never won. Of course, the Cards have never been there with Charlie Strong as head coach and he has shown over the last two years that you can "never
Not sure if Charlie went surfing
yesterday after defeating UConn
say never" with Strong coached teams..or how they'll handle success.  

All this adds up to a very interesting scenario now in the BIG EAST where just about the entire league has two losses and they may have to bring in the Supreme Court justices to decide who gets the "big money" bowl.

Charlie even managed to stir up some fan controversy yesterday when he pulled starting quarterback Teddy Bridgewater out of the game in the fourth quarter and inserted former starter Will Stein in the game. The Cards couldn't move the ball with Stein taking the snaps and Bridgewater didn't appear to be injured.

Charlie-Ball. Never boring (or predictable).
.
..
nochoiceisachoice

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