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Monday, October 31, 2011

Tay ruled ineligible for Fall semester


TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE:


SPECIAL CARDINAL COUPLE REPORT:

-Charmaine Tay ruled ineligible for Fall Semester.

-Getting to know...Cierra Warren

Tough news for Lady Cards fans...sophomore guard Charmaine Tay has been ruled academically ineligible for the fall semester at UofL. She failed to meet the academic requirements the NCAA holds for freshmen.

WE noticed that she did not dress for the Lindsey Wilson scrimmage on Sunday. A question posed to a University of Louisville spokesperson returned an answer that she "had some work to do" in the classroom.

Tay did not accompany the Cards this summer when they visited Oregon and Canada. She was on campus taking classes.

Jeff Walz comments on the situation:

"This is disappointing for all of us, including Charmaine. She has fallen short on her academic responsibilities and is aware of what needs to be done in order to improve her academic standing with the university and our basketball program. At the same time, we feel that this could be a positive learning experience for her." 

Tay was a reserve guard on the 2010-11 team who stepped into prominence late in the season. Her 11-point performance against Xavier in the 3rd round of the NCAA Tournament late in the game secured the win over the Musketeers

Louisville has a wealth of guard talent on the current team. Shelby Harper, Jude Schimmel, Shoni Schimmel, Bria Smith, Becky Burke and Tia Gibbs all looked good against Lindsey Wilson. 

(Parts of this article are re posted from the UofL Sports website and Cardinal Sports and Howie Lindsey.)

For the best daily coverage on men's sports at UofL check out http://www.cardinalsports.com/ today! To keep up on the Cards, check out http://www.uoflsports.com/

We also recommend Charlie Springer's daily observations over at UofL Card Game. http://www.uoflcardgame.com/ Charlie is kinda "daddy" to us...we cut our journalistic teeth over at Card Game and he still lets Paul write about football from time to time. Bold man, that Charlie...

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

We love this collage of CI...created by Charlie
Springer, of UofL Card Game fame.


After Cierra Warren's assault on the Lindsey Wilson front line Sunday afternoon in the KFC YUM! Center, we've had several e-mails wondering where the sophomore center has been hiding the last year. The 6'4" Rancho Cucamongo, CA. native had to sit out the 2010-11 season due to NCAA transfer rules. That didn't stop her from punishing Cardinals Keisha Hines, Sherrone Vails and Asia Taylor in practices, though. Those of us who saw her play predicted great things for her in 2011-12. So far, so good.

The college odyssey began for Cierra two years ago when she decided to take North Carolina up on a scholarship offer and headed to Chapel Hill to play for Sylvia Hatchell.  She appeared in 31 games in the 2009-10 season, averaging 4.2 points per game and 2.6 rebounds in 9.6 minutes per contest. The paint was packed at UNC and Cierra was looking for more time on the court.

Jeff Walz knew of her, tried to recruit her when she was a senior at Los Osos High School, and showed interest when she was ready to transfer. Here's a few fun facts about the dominant paint prowler that you may have not known:

The talent I would most like to have:
Juggle

My goal for this season:
Play and win in Denver

I model my game after:
Kobe Bryant

My nickname:
CI

Something about you that would surprise people?
Both my parents are short.

WE'LL look forward to watching "42" work in the paint this season and help lead the Lady Cards to win after win. From what WE'VE seen so far, we'll say:

"Si, Si...CI, CI !"


nochoiceisachoice

Women's Soccer defeats the Friars...Jenny checks in on LWC game...Field Hockey falls to Northwestern

.
MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Women's soccer advances to BIG EAST semifinals

-Jenny's take on the Lindsey Wilson game

-Field Hockey loses to Northwestern

Louisville's women's soccer team took a 2-0 win yesterday in Cardinal Park over Providence to advance to the semi-finals of the BIG EAST tournament. Goals from Jennifer Jones and Christine Exeter propelled the Cards past the Friars. They travel to Morgantown on Friday for the semis...where they'll meet Notre Dame. The match will be shown on CBS College Sports at 3 p.m.

Kiefer records another shutout!
Women's soccer and football both in Morgantown this weekend...look out Mountaineers, it's a Cardinal invasion!

Jones got the scoring started for Louisville when she booted one in at the 12 minute mark of the game. That lead held throughout the first half and well into the second half. Exeter found the net in the 79th. minute of play after stealing a pass by the Friars and going in for an unassisted goal.

Chloe Kiefer was steady in the net for the Cards but had little action...getting just one save. The Cards had 16 shots, compared to just two for Providence. The 7-1 advantage for Louisville in shots on goal is a testament to the hard-working defensive line.

"Although we weren't the prettiest today and didn't play a lot of good soccer, this team is so special that we absolutely willed ourselves into the BIG EAST final four. WE are a very special group and we're excited to be in the great company of Notre Dame, Georgetown and West Virginia in the BIG EAST semifinals. Our mission hasn't been accomplished yet because we want to win a Big East tournament championship. We will refocus and prepare for the job ahead."  Karen Ferguson-Dayes, Louisville head women's soccer coach.

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

(Staff writer Jenny O' Bryan gives us her take on the 118-41 Lady Cards basketball win over Lindsey Wilson Sunday)

The first game of the 2011-12 season is officially in the books. One had to expect a lopsided win, and of course, our Cards did not disappoint. 


Cardinal fans enjoying the
tipoff luncheon
 Starters were Monique Reid, Cierra Warren, Shelby Harper, Becky Burke and Tia Gibbs. With about five minutes gone in the contest, Coach Walz mass substituted and Shoni Schimmel, Asia Taylor, Bria Smith, Sara Hammond and Sherrone Vails took the court. Lots of subbing throughout the game. Everyone that dressed played and all but Nita Slaughter scored.

Cierra Warren. Very impressive with 18 points. She looked strong around the basket and had a lot of easy scores. She followed her misses, rebounded and went back up. Not sure how this will translate to D1 opponents, but she looked good. Shawnta Dyer behind her with 16. Six players in double figures and none of them were Shoni or Mo.

Sara Hammond had a lot of nice moves under the basket and took a couple of 10-15 foot shots. Sara didn't always finish. Her shot looked better and more consistent in the second half. A little time under her belt and she is going to be a force to be reckoned with.

It was very nice to see our size and inside game. This has been the biggest concern for me. A very good showing Sunday. Again, not sure how this will match up against more evenly matched teams, especially in BIG EAST play, but it was a good start out of the gate. 

Bria Smith has a great dribble drive. Not afraid to venture into the paint and draw contact. She looked good. Her defense was incredibly strong and she was causing havoc with the opponents. Officially, she had one steal in the books, but she was involved in several defensive efforts that led to turnovers. 

Jude Schimmel hit a couple of threes and ended up with 10 points. Only one turnover. I'll call it a good day for Jude.
Even goblins get excited about Lady Cards hoops!

Shelby Harper was relentless on defense. Fast and tenacious. Also knocked down a couple of threes. Two steals. Despite the numbers, I can tell you that Shelby and Bria were way busier defensively than the books show.

Our girls had a few blocked shots. Not as many as I would have expected. Shawnta with two, Sherrone got one and Bria had one

To recap...it's going to be exciting to watch this team this year. They show great potential. You can catch them again at the KFC YUM! Center on Nov. 20 against Xavier. This is a PACK THE HOUSE event and a Sunday 2 p.m. game. Also a "red out" game. The Cards will be on the road for the next two...travelling to Missouri State and Texas A&M.

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

Field Hockey fell 1-0 to #20 Northwestern yesterday in Evanston, Illinois. Not a lot to report on this one...The Cards go to 10-8 on the season and will head to Syracuse for the BIG EAST Championships Nov 4-6.

Louisville outshot the Wildcats 8-7 but couldn't find the back of the net. Erin Conrad had five saves in the game. This was the first shutout of Justine Sowry's team this season. Regan Mooney had the only score...25 minutes into the first half.

In the BIG EAST Tournament, Louisville gets a #4 seed and will face top seeded and #4 nationally ranked Connecticut in the opener. Syracuse and Villanova meet in the other semi-final game. Louisville plays at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov 4th.

nochoiceisachoice

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Balanced scoring against Blue Raiders leads Cards

SPECIAL REPORT:

-Balanced scoring leads Louisville to rout of Blue Raiders.

Six Cardinals in double figures this afternoon as Louisville wins 118-41. The Cards
were up 58-19 at half-time and had 84 points in the paint. Cierra Warren led the way
with 18 points and Shawnta Dyer with 16. The Cards led in rebounding 53-19.

All 13 Cardinals that dressed played and all but Nita Slaughter scored. The starting lineup was a bit of a surprise to us...Walz went with Shelby Harper, Tia Gibbs and Becky Burke at guards, Monique Reid at power forward and Cierra Warren in the paint. His first substitution was five players...Asia Taylor, Shoni Schimmel, Sara Hammond, Bria Smith and Shawnta Dyer. Charmaine Tay was not dressed for this afternoon games...no official comment on why but academics were later given as the reason.

Same for Ashley Rainey on LIndsey Wilson. She did not dress or play because of academics.
Monny Niamke looked good at the point for the Blue Raiders..getting in 32 minutes and scoring a team high 15 points but fouled out late and had nine of Lindsey Wilson's 29 turnovers.

The halftime parade of costumes was adorable!
The "Show" was up to her old tricks of no-look passes and eye-popping ball control. She had nine points and eight assists in 15 minutes. No Cardinal played more than 20 minutes in the game (Tia Gibbs) and Dyer had nine boards to go with her 16 points. 

The Cards grabbed control of this one early and led 11-5 with 17:28 to go in the first half after a Cierra Warren jumper in the paint connected. Louisville went on a 22-5 run after that and Bria Smith's fastbreak layup made it 33-10 with 9:26 remaining in the first half. The Cards closed out the first half on a 13-0 run to lead by 39...Cierra Warren getting 10 of her points and Bria Smith adding eight of her game total ten points in the first twenty minutes.

Charlie "Dracula" Meade with his father Mike
lindsey Wilson struggled against the Louisville defensive pressure the entire first hald and that did not change to open up the final twenty minutes. The Cards outscored the Blue Raiders 22 to 8 in the first seven minutes of the second half and led 80-27. A Jude Schimmel three sent the Cards over the century mark with 7:26 remaining in the game -making it 101-35 - and held the Blue Raiders to six points the rest of the way.

Lots of good things happened this afternoon for the hard working Cardinals. Bria Smith showed why she was one of the top-ranked guards in high school basketball last year...she has an explosive first step and drives the baseline well. Same old steady and dependable Monique Reid inside...getting nine points this afternoon in just ten minutes of action. Jude Schimmel pulling the string from deep and nailing both her three point attempts and ending with 10 points in 15 minutes of play. Cierra Warren was an absolutely dominating force inside against the weaker Blue Raiders and went 9-13 from the field.

Hello, princess!
Louisville head coach Jeff Walz spoke with the media after the game and was pleased overall with team's performance. No real goals or objectives for today...just to play hard and the Cards certainly did that..in a variety of lineup combinations and situations. He even jokingly suggested that he drew today's starting lineup from a hat. He loves Shawnta Dyer's work ethic and Warren's strength in the paint.

"It was nice to get out and play against someone you don't see everyday." Walz reflected after the game.

Walz on LWC's Monny Niamke:

"Monny is a strong player. She's a great on-ball defender and, even though she fouled out...she did it by playing too hard, which is something you like to see."

Walz on what needs work:

"We are going to go to work Tuesday on fundamentals. We've got to do a better job defensively. We have to get into the passing lanes. We have to do a better job blocking out. We did OK rebounding but that's just because we were bigger than them. We can't just rely on our size and strength. We have to do the fundamental things better."

We were impressed with the freshmen. Hammond is a hard working, give no quarter paint player who can also pass, drive and rebound. Jude Schimmel did get schooled a couple of times by Niamke but her shot is picture perfect...maybe even better than Shoni's...if that os possible. Smith is destined to be one of the top guards in the country down the road. She knows the game, her first step is soooo fast and she glides down the court effortlessly. 

The Cards even shot the ball well from the charity stripe with a 9-12 performance. This is going to be a fun and exciting team to watch this year. Strength galore in the paint, multiple guards that seemingly can score at will and, of course, the "Show".

 Louisville returns to action next on November 13th, with a trip to Springfield, MO. to take on Missouri State.

nochoiceisachoice

Women's Soccer and basketball today

.

SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Exhibition game for hoops team today at 3 p.m.

-Women's soccer quarterfinal match at 1 p.m.

-Football gets a win Saturday

-Field Hockey travels to Northwestern

The 2011-12 University of Louisville women's basketball team starts it up
today with a 3 p.m. exhibition game against Lindsey Wilson. CARDINAL COUPLE will be there to cover the action and give you a full report later
this evening on the results.

Interesting matchup against former teammate Ashley Rainey and potential future teammate Monny Niamke today for Louisville. Rainey had a spectacular season last year for Linsdey Wilson after leaving Louisville in mid-season two years ago.

Niamke chose Lindsey Wilson when it was determined that she didn't qualify academically for Louisville this summer. The French point guard will tangle with the Cards and we'll be interested to see how she matches up with her possible future teammates.

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

The UofL women's soccer team plays in the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST tournament today at Cardinal Park against Providence. Game time is 1 p.m. The Cards have been on a hot streak lately and drew a first round bye in the tourney. Providence got past Rutgers 1-0 to advance to today's game.

The Cards beat the Friars 1-0 in a regular season matchup this year. WE'LL have the results of that one for you, too, later today.

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

Nice win yesterday for the football Cards, defeating Syracuse 27-10. We like the hard hitting, aggressive nature of Charlie's Strong defense and they really stepped up yesterday, keeping a Syracuse team that put up 49 points on West Virgina to just three until late in the game.

"Touchdown" Teddy Bridgewater continues to look a little better each week at quarterback and we saw the old Vic Anderson yesterday as well, running with the speed and skill that he showed as a freshman.

Headed to WVU next week. These two definitely don't like each other...

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

Don't worry, Tom. You've got two
daughters that are excellent field
hockey players...
Field Hockey heads to Chicago to face Northwestern today in their final game of the regular season. Cards will join Syracuse, Connecticut and Villanova in the BIG EAST tournament next week.

The Cards are in fourth place in the seven team league. With Syracuse leaving, the league will drop to six teams. Neither Pittsburgh or West Virginia have field hockey teams.

The Cards have had a good season with first year coach Justine Sowry. Former Cardinal field hockey coach Pam Bustin is having success, too. Her Duke Blue Devils team went 11-5, 2-2 in the regular season and will play in the ACC Tournament next week.

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



nochoiceisachoice

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Jeff Walz energizes WBB Tipoff luncheon crowd.

.
SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE PRESENTS:

-Articles from Jenny O' Bryan and Sandy Walker on WBB Tip-Off Luncheon

-Volleyball shuts out USF

-Football today

(Thanks to both Jenny and Sandy for these excellent reports on Friday's tip-off
luncheon. From their accounts, it was an excellent time!)

"We are no longer hoping to do great things. We are expecting to do great things." - Jeff Walz, University of Louisville head women's basketball coach.

Let me just start off by saying that due to scheduling conflicts in the past, this is the first Tip-Off luncheon I've been able to attend. The excitement about the impending season was immediately in effect as we sat down to have lunch. We were treated to the last 3:30 of the Xavier game that catapulted the Lady Cards to the Sweet Sixteen. If watching that come-from-behind win was not enough to stoke the fire of any burning Card fan, I don't know what could. Not that I needed my fire stoked, mind you. I am beyond ready for this season.

Coach introduced each member of the freshman class. Shawnta Dyer, UofL's medical red shirt freshman, was portrayed as absolutely giving our post players competition for playing time. Bria Smith was described as having the quickest first step of any player Walz has ever coached. Coach expects Bria to take the ball to the basket and create foul trouble for her defenders. He also mentioned that Notre Dame's Natalie Novosel went to the free throw line more the all of UofL's guards combined last season. He expects Bria to change that. Sara Hammond tag? A competitor who will have a presence in the post and a player that can also step out and hit the 15-18 foot jumper. Walz also noted her biggest problem. She smiles so much. It's not working for him to yell at Sara...only to have her smile and nod at him. When she knocks a defender off of their feet, she smiles and helps them up. (A great problem to have to deal with, right?) Jude Schimmel is competing for minutes at point guard. According to Walz, she is the best on-ball defender he has coached. She will create havoc for her opponents. She needs work on limiting her turnovers and protecting the ball. 

Walz did not spend much time talking about the sophomores and juniors, noting that we should all know who they are by now. He did comment about having four sophomores that logged a lot of time last season. They know their expectations and they are prepared to deliver. 

Coach also spoke about the two Lady Card seniors. Two things of special note were that Mo and Becky were the first two players to make it through four years of Coach Walz. That being quite an accomplishment. They are also the only remaining players who have Final Four and National Championship game experience. (Keisha Hines played four years for Walz but was recruited by Tom Collen.)

In talking about Mo, Coach spoke passionately about Mo's "Granny" who all the players know. He talked about the local folks, years ago, doubting Mo could compete at a collegiate level. Mo wouldn't work hard enough, according to them. Supposedly, she'd never listen.  Coach revealed that when Mo and Granny came to UofL for a visit, and he met Granny, he knew Mo would succeed...because of the support system around her. Coach also noted that if any trouble is brewing, Granny will step in.

No one wants Granny to step in. No one! 

As a three year starter, Walz expects great things from Mo this year. She understands the expectations. It is fair to say that Mo has, and continues to, prove the naysayers wrong. I, too, believe we will see great things from Mo this year.

Finally, Walz spoke about Becky. He talked about her infamous three point shot. He spoke of her knowledge and understanding her role on the team. As a freshman, her instructions were to stand on the wing, wait to see if Angel was going to throw the ball out and then shoot her shot if that happened. Her game has evolved since those days. She drives, rebounds and even occasionally plays defense now...according to Walz, tongue-in-cheek.

The Lady Cards have two players with a national championship game under their belt. Sophomores with extensive playing time as freshmen. McDonalds' All-Americans. Kentucky Miss Basketballs. The Schimmel sisters. 14 players that could walk on any campus in this nation and compete for a starting spot. The best fan base in women's college basketball.

Dear friends, we have depth, quickness and great defenders. I believe we are poised for a deep run in the tournament this year. For any naysayers out there, I've got one word for you.

Granny. You can take it up with her.

-Jenny O' Bryan

(Great report from Jenny! Sandy Walker was also in attendance. Here's her take.)

Yesterday, 700 attendees were fortunate enough to attend the 2011-12 University of Louisville Women's Basketball Tip Off Luncheon. 5th year head coach Jeff Walz was the featured speaker. The UofL Pep Band, cheerleaders, and Lady Cards greeted us as we walked in the arena. Beautifully prepared tables filled the YUM! arena floor and we were surrounded by four large video screens that gave everyone a great view of the dais...where the team was individually introduced.

We were also entertained by video highlights and a portion of the Xavier game. We got a inside peak of the progress and status of the player's development which left us with an eagerness for the upcoming season.

Pack this place, Cardinal fans!
Our table held a lively conversation concerning the need for every fan to encourage first time game attendance from people we know. Just one game will convert them into permanent fans. Coach challenged the fans to raise last year's 10,000+ home game average to 13,000 and to overcome the dilemma of weekday afternoon tip-offs. To help meet the target, season ticket holders that are directly responsible for 1 or 2 additional  purchased season tickets by December 10th. will be rewarded with a T-Shirt, followed by a UofL pullover. The top two season ticket sellers will win either a $500 shopping spree at the YUM! Center Cardinal Store or a chance to participate as a travelling member of the team for an entire road trip.

Coach Walz took pains to let everyone know that with such a large group of talented players, each must buy into their specific role to help the team win. He stressed the need for someone who could lock down an opponent on defense.


Get on the bus and head to Lexington!
 It was announced that the Fastbreak Club is sponsoring group travel from Papa John's Stadium to the UK game on December 4th. Your trip must be reserved by calling (502) 500-4756 by November 23rd.  For $40, you get bus fare, a game ticket and food and drinks during the trip. The team will definitely need and appreciate everyone's support at what is always a partisan and rowdy UK "pack the house" event crowd.

Sunday's 3 p.m. game against Lindsey Wilson will be preceded by the women's soccer team playing Providence at Cardinal Park. It's a BIG EAST Tournament quarterfinal match and fans are encouraged to attend both. 

We've waited since last April. It's finally time to enjoy and support our women's basketball team again....all the way to Denver! 

Let the games begin! 

-Sandy Walker

(Thanks, Sandy for an excellent report on the event! CARDINAL COUPLE is very fortunate to have two writers with the passion, knowledge and spirit that we have in both Jenny and Sandy. LET'S GO CARDS!)

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


Lola leaps for another kill

The University of Louisville volleyball team took the Bulls by the horns yesterday in Tampa and won convincingly in three sets...25-23, 25-14 and 25-23. Lola stepping up big again for Anne Kordes' squad with 13 kills. Emily Juhl added 1o for UofL, who goes to 17-6 overall and 9-1 in BIG EAST play.

It was a little closer than expected in game one...the teams battling back and forth and reaching a 22-22 tie before getting a couple of Lola kills to win by three. The Cards had no such problems in game two...steadily increasing the lead throughout the match to win by 11. USF tried to force a fourth game and was tied with UofL at 22-22 in game three before a huge kill from Lola gave the Cards another two point win for game and match.

The Cards hit an outstanding .402 for the match and outdug USF 40-33. They also recorded six serving aces, led by Emily Juhl's two. Caitlin Welch had 17 digs. 

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

The Orange won't be this happy this afternoon
Charlie Strong leads the football Cards into a noon tilt with the Syracuse Orangemen today in Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. Syracuse comes in hot...having shocked WVU last time out 49-23 in the Carrier Dome. The Orange (5-2) won't put up those kind of numbers on Louisville's defense...but the Cards (3-4) will need to get the offense rolling for today's homecoming crowd if they want to improve to 4-4.

Noon kickoffs. Oughta be a law against 'em...

nochoiceisachoice

Friday, October 28, 2011

WVU gets the BIG 12 slot...WBB Tipoff Luncheon today...Swimming and Diving fall to Tennessee...19 in a row

.
FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE:

-BIG 12 says...WVU, not Louisville

-Sold out luncheon today for Lady Cards

-Tennessee defeats Cards in swimming

-RAPID REDUX wins 19th. in a row

Make room, guys. The Mountaineer
is joining you...
The BIG 12 has chosen, and it not Louisville. The Mountaineers. Knowing how these kinds of things work, there will probably be more to this than we currently know. Conference re-alignment is like sitting through your niece's piano recital...it never seems to end.

Surprising that they chose to announce it at 7 a.m. Must have been a sleepless night for the decision makers.

Next step? In Jurich we trust.

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

Congratulations if you got a seat at today's University of Louisville women's basketball tip off luncheon today. The event is sold out. CARDINAL COUPLE will have two of our writers in attendance, though, if you can't go...and we'll look forward to their reports and observations. 

The Lady Cards will open their season Sunday with an exhibition game against Lindsey Wilson. Most preseason polls we're seeing have Jeff Walz's team ranked in the top ten nationally.

The Cards return their top two scorers from last year in Monique Reid and Shoni Schimmel. Four starters from the team that upset Xavier in the NCAA tournament are back on campus, and three very talented freshmen join the mix.

The schedule looks to be a tough one, with pre-conference tilts against powerhouse Texas A&M, ACC member Florida State, in-state rival Kentucky and a trip to the Pacific northwest for two games. The roster is deep, though and competition has been spirited in the pre-season practices. Toss the ball in the air and let's get it started!

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

The University of Louisville lost a dual meet in swimming and diving yesterday to nationally ranked Tennessee. The women fell 183-117 to the Vols in the Ralph Wright Natatorium on campus.

Hannah Gadd placed second in the 1 meter diving event. Fanny Lillestrom won in the 200 meter breaststroke for the Cards. The women failed to win any other events but had a lot of close second and third place finished against UT.

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

5 year old RAPID REDUX won his 19th. straight horse race yesterday...splashing past four foes in the sixth race at Laurel Race Course in Maryland. The streak began on October 13, 2010 and has taken him to seven different race tracks and he's had nine different jockeys on board for the wins.


Talk about playing well on the road...

None of his wins have come at any Kentucky tracks...his owner prefers to keep him close to the Maryland and Pennsylvania racing circuits...but an attempt to get him to ship into  Churchill for a fall race this year is picking up steam.

He isn't racing against the best competition out there and he's definitely not Breeder's Cup quality...but nineteen in a row is nothing to sneeze about.

Yesterday's win was a typical effort for the gelding. Took the early lead, was well rated and relaxed through the first quarter by jockey J.D. Acosta (who's been on board for four of the wins) kept to the rail as the horses hit the stretch and gradually pulled away from the field.

The nineteen in a row ties him with Peppers Pride and Zenyatta for most consecutive wins on North American race tracks. He paid $2.60 on a $2.00 win ticket yesterday.

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





nochoiceisachoice

Thursday, October 27, 2011

BIG 12 waiting on naming additional members...Golf rallies to finish 5th...Pitino gets 19 point win over Pikeville

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THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-BIG 12 waiting on naming new conference members

-Women's golf finishes 5th in Vegas

-Men's Basketball downs Pikeville

Maybe they actually asked the remaining members which school(s) they'd
like to have join. Maybe Mitch McConnell, in raincoat and sunglasses, visited
Has the honorable Mitch McConnell boxed the Eers? 
the midwest. Maybe our article from yesterday got through to someone. Maybe 6 is 9.

In another wild and wacky twist to the soap opera known as conference expansion...the BIG 12 has put off a decision to add WVU to the gang and is now waiting to see if Missouri is going to join the SEC. The crawl line on ESPN
was cryptic and terse. WVU's move is on hold. Rebel forces from the Ohio Valley have made inroads on the main front and strongly object to the decision concerning the Mountaineers uniting forces with the allies. Louie the Cardinal Bird was seen strolling the Belknap Campus in a beret and humming "Country Roads." The I-64 bridge between Ashland, KY and Nitro, WVa. has been barricaded with couches and furniture in the east bound lanes...

Someone bring in General Patton.

Rick...please quit popping off about Owls and Tigers !
Someone put a gag order on Rick Pitino..who keeps singing the "I love Memphis and Temple" mantra. Just coach your team, coach. We don't need no stinking Owls messing things up. 

Really, Rick? Maybe you'd like to try your hand at global warming next. Or climb Mt. Everest. Maybe Charlie Strong should send Clint Hurtt and Pat Moorer over for a visit.

Maybe the BIG 12 rattle-shakers talked to a few folks who aren't real big fans of Morgantown mania on Football Saturdays. Like Pittsburgh or LSU. Like the rest of the staggering BIG EAST football members. Like anyone outside the state of West Virginia.

Maybe Missouri is having second thoughts about making the plunge into the SEC. (Maybe Missouri is crazy if they are...).

This, of course, circumvents the previous BIG 12 statement that WVU was in just as soon as formal approval was reached.

Formal approval...now there's a vague and nebulous phrase. (Hey, Pop..can I borrow the car? Son, you'll have to ask your mother - or the BIG 12 - for formal approval..) 

So...today's words to drool over are:

BIG 12 informs West Virginia that expansion plans are on hold.

"Hey, LOU! Who's in the BIG 12?"
Climb down off the bridges and tall buildings Cardinal football fanatics. The fat lady hasn't sung yet (she can't get the microphone away from Pitino) and looks like we'll go through another weekend of intrigue, speculation, heresy and rumor. 

Meanwhile, in Morgantown...couches are ablaze and any Cardinal fans thinking of making the journey there to watch Louisville play them in football on Saturday, Nov 5th. better make the journey in a Hum-V and carry an assault weapon for protection.

That's Breeders Cup weekend. Stay home and watch the ponies. By then, maybe we'll know if McConnell's on first, if Jurich is on second and if Pitino's on third. BIG 12 informs West Virginia that conference expansion plans are on hold. Say it with me one time. Sounds like the rejection form letter I got in the mail years ago when I applied for a job at Ford....

Meanwhile, in stuff we really care about...HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO UofL head women's baketball coach Jeff Walz. If you see him at the Cardinal WBB kickoff luncheon tomorrow, bestow your blessings. He may be the only one left out there with any common sense...when it comes to decision making and avoidance of sticking foot in mouth.

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

The University of Louisville women's golf squad rallied on the final day of tournament action in Las Vegas and finished fifth in the Las Vegas Inter-collegiate challenge. The final tallies: 

Tara Lyons                    final round 75     222 total     tied for 20th.
Anna-Karin Ljungstrom   final round 72     225 total     tied for 26th.
Emily Haas                   final round 79     226 total     tied for 31st.
Katie Petrino                final round 76     " " " " " "     "  "  "  "  "  "
Maria Castallanos         final round 82     227 total     tied for 36th.

The Cards also had three players competing as individuals in Vegas:

Sara Karlsson              final round 81     232 total      tied for 55th.
Maike Klein                 final round 84     "  "  "  "       "  "  "  "  '' " "
Candice Wiley             final round 82     242 total      tied for 80th.

Thus endeth the fall gold schedule for the Lady Cards. They'll swing back into action on Feb.20th. back in Nevada...at the UNLV Spring Tournament. Vegas, baby...wonder if any of them need a caddy?

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

Cardinal men's hoops started the exhibition season out in the right way with a 74-55 defeat over Pikeville University. This one was over early...the Cards streaking out to a 16-0 lead to start the game. Pitino has some talented "bigs" on the team this year...freshman power forward Chane Behanan with 16 points, center Gorgui Dieng 14 points and 15 boards and tall guy Zach Price with several nice follow up tips for scores.

Maybe the season's start will keep Rick's mind off football for awhile....

nochoiceisachoice

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

WVU to BIG 12...don't let the door hit you on the way out.

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WEDNESDAY @ THE COUPLE

-The Mountaineers bolt for the prairie

-Women's sports: The BIG EAST remains the best bet.

-Golf in ninth after two days

-Gadd BIG EAST diver of the week.

In a football driven decision, the BIG 12 has offered and the West Virginia Mountaineers have accepted an invitation to join the conference. No matter what Missouri does. Of course,
the Mizzou bunch is headed to the SEC...it just isn't official yet. 

Football. It's had some Cardinal fans sitting on the edge of their stadium seats for the past several months. Some desperately depressed because the Wild and Wonderful state got the
invite instead of the mighty Cardinals. It doesn't surprise us. If football is the qualifier, and engine driving all these conference re-alignments...there is no doubt that West Virginia is better than Louisville. In talent, in tradition, in winning percentage and in fan fervor. 

Ever been to a football Saturday in Morgantown, West Virginia? It borders on insanity. Especially the pre-game tailgating fervor. CARDINAL COUPLE has made that trip five times over the years, seen one Cardinal win on those trips, and ran into some of the craziest, out-of-control, passionate, rude and insulting fan bases in college football. Memphis? Forget about it. Nowhere near the crowd or passion. Kentucky? Couldn't carry WVU's water bottle. 

The majority of the trips went pretty well. Here's one from 2005 that didn't...

Louisville loses a triple overtime contest to WVU when Brian Brohm is stopped short of the end zone trying to tie the game with a two-point conversion attempt.  A game Louisville led by 17 in the second half...we watched West Virginia fans streaming toward the exits. Then, the Cards put the WVU starting quarterback out of the game and a young back-up named Pat White enters the game. Witness the WVU scrambling back into Milan Puskar Stadium. Bring in Barbra Streisand instead
of John Denver...because...


A star is born. WVU 46 - Louisville 44.

WE left the stadium...headed to the bus...and watched and heard the spectacle. 60,000 people singing "Country Roads", scores of fans heaping insults and profanities on anyone dressed in red. The three elderly ladies that Sonja and I are escorting back to the bus very scared. A group of inebriated WVU teenagers, approaching our group...pointing fingers, cursing. Paul ready to protect. Sonja...more enraged than she's been in years...screaming back at them to "go home." Fists clenched.

The redneck group... sensing the "backed into a corner mentality" and the big guy menacing a foot above them... retreats. We reach the bus, hear similar stories. We leave...our bus getting rocked, pelted with cans and trash when leaving.

Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor...you have NO idea what you are in store for on football weekends in Morgantown.

WE, at CARDINAL COUPLE, are tired of all this ballyhoo about football, BIG EAST breakups and knee jerk reactions when someone decides to stay, leave or forgets to flush the toilet. Let's go Independent in football (works well for Notre Dame) and keep a BIG EAST affiliation in the other 20 sports that our college athletes work so hard at. WE love the guru Walz quote when asked about conference re-alignment.

"We..I..don't care. We just want to compete. Doesn't matter who it is."

Words to live by.  The needs "of the one" do not outweigh the needs "of the many". I think Spock said that on one of the Star Trek movies.  And, the last time I checked...20 was bigger than 1.

-Paul

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For women's sports, the BIG EAST is still the best option for Louisville. The best basketball conference in college basketball, even with WVU,Syracuse and Pitt out the door. You know who the major players are in BIG EAST WBB. It ain't those three.

West Virginia does not field teams in women's lacrosse, field hockey or softball. They won't have to worry about the first two in the BIG 12. They don't exist. The BIG 12 is a very good softball conference, though.

Louisville has invested a lot of time, money and effort into lacrosse and field hockey.  The best field hockey stadium in NCAA. Their very own lacrosse stadium. Wouldn't want to see these two sports die on the vine because of a football driven conference affiliation.  

Contrary to popular belief, NASCAR is not a
college sport in the SEC or BIG 12...
The problem is this: women's sports has no seat at this table. No matter how many kills Lola Arslanbekova delivers, no-look passes Shoni Schimmel sends or shutouts Caralisa Connell fires...this is all about football. The BIG EAST is best for Louisville in women's hoops, volleyball, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey. They would enter a tougher conference if they went to the BIG 12 in softball. Golf, track, swimming, rowing, cross country and tennis...it's really about the same wherever the Cards end up...since conference affiliations aren't that essential or the major factor in these sports. 

We wait to see what the gridiron group wants and gets. In the meantime, the University of Louisville women's sports teams continue to excel against some very good competition.

West Virginia...good luck. Don't let the door hit you in the back side as your leaving...And, work on building a softball diamond and getting some infield practice in.

**********************************************************************************
Katie Petrino at 150.
Meanwhile, in women's sports...the University of Louisville golf team is in ninth place after two days in the Las Vegas Collegiate tournament. Yesterday saw Maria Castallanos led the Cards with a 75, good for a tie for 20th. place and 145 total. The first round star for Louisville, Emily Haas carded a 78...putting her into a tie for 31st. Low Cardinal score belonged to Tara Lyons...with a 72. Katie Petrino is at 150 for two days, touring the Boulder Creek course yesterday with a 76. Anna-Karin Ljungstrom fired a 78 and is at 153 for two days. Three individual scores...Maike Klein with a 74 and 148 total. Sara Karlsson delivered a 72...two day total of 151. Candace Wiley with back-to-back 80's.

The Cards conclude the three day event today.

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

Hannah Gadd has been named BIG EAST Diver of the Week, winning both events at the SMU Classic. She won the one and three meter events against stiff competition from Texas, Florida, Wisconsin, Virginia, and SMU. Season just starting for the swimming and diving Cards...looking forward to more honors from Gadd and her aquatic crew.


nochoiceisachoice

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Lindsey Wilson tipoff changed to 3 p.m.

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TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Lady Cards will go at 3 p.m. Sunday against Blue Raiders

-Conrad named BIG EAST Field Hockey Defensive player of the Week

-Women's Golf tied for 7th. in Vegas

To accomodate the BIG EAST Women's Soccer Quarterfinal match involving
Louisville at Cardinal Park, the University of Louisville Women's Basketball
exhibition start time against Lindsey Wilson has been moved from 2 p.m. to 
3 p.m. The Soccer Cards get the winner of the Providence vs. Rutgers match

Let's look at the Blue Raiders:


Rainey was an NAIA All-American last year
Lindsey Wilson returns two starters from a team that went 24-9 last year. Star forward and former Lady Card Ashley Rainey averaged 21.1 points for LWC last year. Also returning is 5'9" guard Tiffany Williams, who averaged 5.9 points. 

The Blue Raiders finished second in the Mid-South Conference in the 2010-11 season and made it to the 2nd round of the NAIA National Tournament in Jackson, TN...where they lost to Azusa Pacific University. 

They've been ranked #16 in the NAIA preseason poll for 2011-12. Two other Mid-South members made the poll...Shawnee State (OH) has been picked to finish fourth and Campbellsville (KY) ninth. The Blue Raiders  and picked to finish second in the Mid-South behind Shawnee State.

The Blue Raiders will look for help from an impressive incoming freshman class. Monny Niamke, originally headed to Louisville, will try to lock down the other guard spot. The 5'5" native of Rouen, France is a steady ball-handler and can knock down the three. Lindsey Wilson also signed some impressive height...with 6'3" Ranika Rose, out of Niceville, FL. and 6'3" Caitlyn Radeck, from Franklin, OH. LWC will play Berea the day before scrimmaging the Lady Cards. 

Rainey will be the player the Lady Cards will need to contain to secure an opening win. WE'LL be watching with interest on how well Monny plays...we're assuming she's still on schedule to join the Lady Cards after her freshman season at Lindsey Wilson.

Louisville is offering a $2 admission ticket to those who wear Halloween costumes to the game in the KFC YUM! center and there will be a halftime parade for those who don Halloween outfits. 

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

Cardinal field hockey goalkeeper Erin Conrad has been named BIG EAST Field Hockey Defensive Player of the Week for the second time this season. The award comes after the Cards shut out Providence and Indiana last week. Conrad, a redshirt junior from Wilkes-Barre, PA., had three saves against each opponent. The Cards are 10-7 on the season and Conrad has six shutouts so far this year.

Louisville ends their regular season on the road against Northwestern on Oct. 30th.

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

Women's golf sits tied for seventh after the first round of the Las Vegas Collegiate Challenge. The Cards shot a team total of 288...11 strokes off leader UC Davis.

Freshman Emily Haas leads the Cards with a 69...six strokes off the leader. Maria Castellanos scored a 70, Katie Petrino carded a 74, Anna-Karin Ljungstrom toured the 18 with a 75 and Tara Lyons finished with a 76.

Three Cardinal golfers are participating as individuals...Maike Klein reporting in with a 74 and Candice Wiley and Sara Karlsson firing 79's.

36 more holes to negotiate for the Cardinal chippers. They begin play today at 7:30 a.m. Vegas time.




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

Just in case you were wondering about her, Lady Card and Atlanta Dream superstar is back in Europe...playing for Turkey's Fenerbache again. She's teamed up with WNBA legend Penny Taylor on the roster, which also includes several European stars. Angel did nothing to disappoint in her first game....scoring 19 points in a lopsided win for her squad.

McCoughtry can ill afford not making the trek across the Atlantic...since she's one of the highest paid players in women's Euroball. Should be interesting next WNBA season to see how much the Dream are willing to shell 
                             out to keep Angel... 




nochoiceisachoice

Monday, October 24, 2011

Field Hockey defeats Indiana 1-0...Volleyball loses to Pitt 3-1

.
CARDINAL COUPLE MONDAY

-Thomas nets goal in Cardinal Field Hockey win.

-Volleyball loses in YUM! to Panthers

-Women's golf in Las Vega$ Collegiate Showdown


The University of Louisville Field Hockey team won a defensive battle against
the Indiana Hoosiers yesterday at Trager Stadium 1-0 in the final regular season home game. Amber Thomas found the net off of a Haley Jurich feed for
the only score of the contest. 

Cards face Northwestern Sunday to conclude the regular season
The teams battled to a scoreless first half tie, defense the name of the game here, with only seven shots on goal between the two squads (IU 4-3). More of the same in the second half...with IU getting only one chance to score...late in the game. Goalie Erin Conrad deflected an Audra Hellman shot with less than a minute remaining to preserve the Cardinal win. 


Three seniors were honored on Senior Day. Caitlin Collins, Heather Stevens and Hayley Turner leave the Cardinal Field Hockey squad after four years of valuable service. Turner leads the Cards in goals scored this year, Collins has three goals and three assists and Stevens three goals and five assists.

"The senior class has been phenomenal. As first-year coach here, I couldn't have asked for a better senior class. They really bought into the change and the culture. We're not done yet, we're going to try and finish strong and win the first round of the BIG EAST tournament."  -UofL head Field Hockey coach Justine Sowry.

Louisville (10-7, 3-3) will participate in the BIG EAST tournament in Syracuse from Nov.  4-6.

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

Tough loss for Cardinal volleyball yesterday in the KFC YUM! Center...falling to Pittsburgh 3-1 in front of over 2,000 fans and a regional television audience that watched on WHAS-TV. The Cards fall 3-1 in sets of 25-21, 19-25, 24-26, 20-25.

"The team effort was not there today." -Anne Kordes, UofL head volleyball coach.

The Cards started out well, battling early with the Panthers before taking a 19-17 lead late and outscoring the Panthers 6-4 down the stretch for the 25-21 win. Lola with five kills in game one.

It turned against the Cards after that. Pitt jumped out to a early 10-4 lead and Kordes was forced to call both the team's timeouts to right the ship. Louisville did manage to cut the lead to 19-16 late...but saw the Panthers
Coach Kordes instructs the team.
(Photo by Sandy Walker)
outpoint them 6-3 down the stretch. Lola with six kills in this one.

Louisville trailed for most of the third game before rallying to tie it at 19-19. The Cards held a 21-20 advantage briefly but Pitt tied it at 24-24 and then saw Louisville misfire on two kills attempts to squeak out a two point victory.

The Cards started out strong in the final game, leading by five early...but the Panthers rallied to tie it up at 13-13. The Cardinal defense could not produce after that and Pitt used a 9-4 run to go up 22-17. The Cards tried to fight back and managed to get within three but Pitt produced the final three points of the game and took the win.

Louisville will have a few days off before their next match...a trip to Tampa to face USF on Friday.

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

Maria Castallanos
looks to have a
low score in Vegas.
Women's golf heads to Las Vegas for a tournament today that will conclude their fall schedule. The golfing girls have had a good fall, and Coach K. has a strong roster with Anna-Karin Ljungstrom, Maria Castallanos, Tara Lyons, Emily Haas, Candice Wiley and Katie Petrino all having early successes so far.

They'll be playing in the Las Vegas Collegiate Showdown. 16 teams will vye for the title...including Oklahoma, Nevada, East Carolina and Miami.

The Cards will tee it off beginning at 7:30 (Vegas time) this morning.
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Sunday, October 23, 2011

W.Soccer downs Bearcats 1-0...Volleyball over WVU 3-1

.
SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE:

-Women's Soccer, Exeter defeat Cincy in Soccer

-Volleyball romps WVU...plays in the KFC YUM! today

-Make the short run to Broad Run

Exeter's 12 goals this year are the
highest for a Card since 2004.
Congratulations to the University of Louisville women's soccer team, who clinched the National Division title last night with a 1-0 win over the Cincinnati Bearcats in Cincinnati last night. The match was a defensive struggle during the first half, knotted at 0-0 when the teams went to the locker room. Louisville got the only goal of the contest when Christine Exeter scored her 12th. goal of the season in the 59th. minute of play...taking a Katie McDonald pass on a breakaway and knocking a kick into the goal.

Defense held the rest of the way for Louisville. Goalkeeper Chloe Kiefer has six saves for her sixth shutout of the season. Louisville (10-5-3) and Cincy were even with shots-on-goal at six each.

For Exeter, it was her 11th. goal in the last ten games...all of them BIG EAST contests. Louisville has rebounded well from a tough start to the season, with nine wins, one loss and two ties since being 1-4-1.

It was the 100th. win for Karen Ferguson-Dayes in her coaching career. She took over the Cardinal program in 2000. She commented:

Coach hit 100 wins with
Saturday's win
"I couldn't think of a more appropriate team to celebrate 100 with. These kids are awesome."

In the BIG EAST tournament, Louisville will draw a first round bye and face the winner of the Providence-Rutgers game. The contest will be at Cardinal Park, Sunday, Oct. 30th. at 1 p.m. Winner of that one heads to Morgantown for the semifinals and finals...to be held Nov. 4th and 6th.

It is the first time a UofL women's soccer team has won a division title and the eight wins that Louisville gathered in BIG EAST play this season is also a new Cardinal record.

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

Also with eight wins in the BIG EAST is the UofL Volleyball team. They recorded a 3-1 defeat over West Virginia yesterday in a rowdy and loud Cardinal Arena to stay undefeated in BIG EAST conference play. Louisville took the match 25-14, 22-25, 25-17, 25-16.

The Cards are on path to repeat their 2010
championship season.
Louisville jumped out early in game one and held leads of 7-2, 14-6 and 21-11 before retiring the Mountaineers by 11. Key was Emily Juhl's four serving aces and .379 hitting for the Cards.

Game two saw WVU lead early and Louisville rally to make it just 23-22 Mountaineers.A block on Kaitlynn James made it set point for WVU and the capitalized to even the match at 1-1.

Louisville roared out in game three and led by double digits at 18-8...coasting in with an eight point lead over WVU. The Cards hit .418 in the third game. Game four was another stroll thru the park for the Cards...leading by six late and then outscoring West Virginia 7-4 down the stretch for the game, set and match.

Lola with another big effort for UofL with 20 kills. Brooke Mattingly added 10 kills and the Cards are now 16-5 on the season.

They roll back into action Sunday with a 2 p.m. contest against Pittsburgh in the KFC YUM Center. If you go, wear pink...since it is Dig for the Cure Day and the Cards will be in their pink unis. If you can't make the match, WHAS-TV will televise the action.

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

From the places to see category. If you live in Louisville...or even if you come for a visit, make Broad Run Vineyards a place to go. We were tipped off by a friend about the small, quaint winery in rural southeastern Jefferson County and made the trip recently. They have a large selection of wines to sample from very dry whites and reds to sweet dessert and berry selections.

Gerry (left)will discuss
wine for hours.
Sonja came away very impressed with the blackberry sweet wine, Paul liked the drier Chambourcin. Tastings are very economical at just $5 to sample the entire list..and the servers are very knowledgeable and friendly.

You can get to Broad Run by taking the Billtown Road exit off I-265 and following the signs or just take Seatonville Road south to Broad Run Road and it's a short three miles from there. Beautiful scenery, especially now that the fall leaves are changing colors, and if you're lucky...you'll run in to 82 yr. old owner Gerry Kushner...who will keep you entertained with his wonderfully wacky stories of his life, the wine business and places he has travelled.
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