TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE
-Frentic Friars will challenge Cards
The Providence Friars (10-8, 2-3) come into the KFC YUM! Center Wednesday night fresh off a win Saturday over West Virginia 51-48 win in the Dunkin' Donuts Center. They've also knocked off DePaul in BIG EAST play this season...60-52 at "the Donut".
It's one of those games where if Louisville wins, not too many eyebrows will be raised. IF the Friars knock off the Lady Cards, though...it'll add to the league-wide viewpoint that head coach Phil Seymore has a contender in the BIG EAST this year.
The Friars have also beat Clemson earlier in the season. Losses have come to Boston U., Virginia, Rhode Island, Brown and Delaware. Conference losses have been administered by Villanova, UConn and St. John's. Providence is 6-3 at home, 4-5 on the road.
Leading threat for PU is red-shirt senior forward Teva Wright. The 6'1" forward averages 13.3 p.p.g and grabs 9.9 rebounds a contest...nearly a double-double on the season. Aiding her in the Providence offense is senior guard/forward Rachel Barns. She's good for 11.5 p.p.g. and is the leading three point threat...producing 26 threes in 85 attempts.
Providence also features Lauren Okafor...a former Lady Cards target from a couple of years ago. The sophomore is a 6'3" center who goes to the boards hard on both ends of the court.
Head coach Phil Seymore is in his 7th year as the Providence skipper. His Friars went 13-16 last year and did not participate in post season play.
Could be a trap game for the Cards. Like Rugters, they rebound well and can score in the paint. They can also light you up from outside with Barnes and several other Friars. Whether Louisville will continue with the 2-3 zone that stymied the Scarlet Knighs Saturday remains to be seen. Louisville would certainly enjoy another big effort from the "bigs" Weds. night and we can hope that the 'stop Shoni' strategy that recent opponents have been employing fails.
Providence plays in about 400 fans for their home contests...so a big turnout of Lady Cards fans could definitely play in Louisville's advantage against the Friars.
At 3-2 in the BIG EAST, a loss against the Friars would push Louisville even further behind the unbeatens in the BIG EAST...Notre Dame and Rutgers. Let's hope the Lady Cards are all "cooking" against the Friars Wednesday night...