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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Louisville's Bracket Selection viewing at PNC Club a big hit.


-Lady Cards will face Michigan State in NCAA

-Softball goes to 20-0 with double-header win over Illinois State 

-CARDINAL COUPLE NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament Bracket Challenge is open for picks (and rolls and double screens). 

The University of Louisville women's basketball team will travel to College Park, Maryland, home of the Maryland Terrapins, to face Michigan State University in first round NCAA Championship action. Louisville is a #7 seed. Michigan State a #10 seed. The game will tip at 1:30 p.m. Saturday. Winner gets the victor of the #2 Maryland vs. #15 Navy tussle.


CARDINAL COUPLE staff writer Jenny O'Bryan and CARDINAL COUPLE Commish Mark Schneider were there and we've combined their reports and posted plenty of their pictures for you...

A large and enthusiastic crowd filled the Bracket Selection Party that the University of Louisville held for Cardinal fans at the PNC Plaza at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium for the showing of the NCAA women's basketball tournament. Womens' hoops party at a football stadium but the excitement reached the fevered pitch of a women's game at the KFC YUM! Center as the announcement time drew near.

The Cardinal player were on hand in full force and graciously signing autographs for eager fans. The hand had been tipped a bit earlier on who the Lady Cards would face...t-shirts were available for sale with Louisville vs. MSU on the front. Scores of UofL fans chatted with the Cardinal Faithful and plenty of Cardinal merchandise was available for purchase. 

A Tayy !!!!!
Shortly before the Selection Show began, Louisville head basketball coach Jeff Walz went to the podium to address the audience. He spent a good deal of time thanking the crowd and all Cardinal fans for their attendance and support of the program.

Walz also told the crowd that he always reminds the team of how lucky they are to draw the crowds to home games the size and number of those who attend Lady Cards contests at the KFC YUM! Center. He mentioned that the Cards sometimes play in front of 200-300 fans on BIG EAST road trip games, including the home team's coaches, players and pep band. 

Laura Terry, Derty Bird, and Shawnta
Walz told the crowd that Louisville was #2 in the nation in total attendance and that next year's objective was to become #1. He like to see the season ticket base increase from 8000 to 10000. He also revealed that the Lady Cards would home the home schedule next year against Texas A&M and the game would probably be on a Friday night. 

Walz also caught Becky Burke off-guard and called on her for an impromptu speech. Burke handled it well, though and expressed her appreciation for the fans, her teammates and her chance to play for the program. 

Walz seemed happy with the tournament draw and talked about how good a team Michigan State was.

He acknowledged that Maryland could be the net opponent for Louisville and spurred the crowd on by reminding them what Louisville did to them the last time the two teams faced. (That, of course was during the Cards march to the NCAA Championship game...when Louisville knocked them off to reach the Final Four.) 

After the gathering and media obligations this evening, Walz said he'd be busy with his staff watching film of the Spartans in preparation for the Saturday game. The team will practice Tuesday. 

E-mails received here at CARDINAL COUPLE have been mostly positive about the venue and the atmosphere. Here's a few comments...

"The fan-friendly nature of the event is a step above the days when the team was crowded into the Parrish House and no food was available"

"We had a wonderful time at the PNC Club and my daughters got to talk to several of the players, including Shelby Harper -- her favorite. I hope they go there again next year." 

"...Much better than having it at Cardinal Arena. Player interaction with the fans is a must if (Walz) wants to get 10000 season ticket holders." 

"Although the family and I had a great time last night, I do think this annual celebration of Cardinal basketball should be held in a basketball-type setting, not a football one. I would suggest that they go to the KFC YUM! Center next year." 

(Have a take on the event last night? Feel free to leave a comment or shoot us an-email. Due to Sonja's work schedule and Paul being out-of-town, we unfortunately had to miss the event.)


Louisville Softball goes to 20-0 in the battle of the Birds (Redbirds vs. Cardinals) yesterday at Ulmer Stadium. 

The start was delayed a couple of hours due to storms, but the soggy conditions didn't dampen the UofL attack once things got underway.


Louisville jumped to an early 2-0 in the bottom of the first. Kristin Austin singled and scored on a Katie Keller single. Keller reached the plate on a wild pitch.

The Cards added four more runs in the third inning. Taner Fowler and Alicja Wolny registered back-to-back doubles to plate a run. Jordan Trimble took first base on a Redbird error, and Hannah Kiyohara cleared the left field fence with a 'goodbye Mr. Splading' to make it 6-0 "Ville". 

The Redbirds notched a run in the fourth and fifth innings. Louisville retaliated in the fifth when Fowler smashed her second double of the game and made it home on a Trimble single. Louisville concluded the scoring in the sixth when Austin singled and made it 8-2 on a Wolny fielder's choice.

Torrid Tori Collins (9-0) went the distance for Sandy Pearsall...allowing two runs on eight hits and striking out eight. 


Louisville hit the scoreboard in the first when Austin singled and scored on Wolny's single. The Cards added five runs in the fourth. Kiyohara's single started it off. She was replaced by pinch-runner Kirsten Straley, who scored on a Whitney Arion double. Esteban reached on an error and scored on a Austin hit. Austin got home on a double steal to make it 3-0.
After a Keller single, Wolny parked a blast over center to put Louisville comfortably ahead 6-0

The Cards ended it with the run-rule in the fifth. Kayla Soles doubled, Kiyohara drew a base on balls and an Arion single sent Soles to greet the home umpire. Kiyohara got the final run on a RedBirds fielding error.

Caralisa Connell (6-0) gets the win, allowing one hit in 2.1 innings of relief. Starter Chelsea Leonard went 2.2 innings and struck out six while allowing just two hits.


Brackets are ready to be filled out at YAHOO! for the Cardinal Couple Bracket Challenge. Go get some! Our info is 814 and the password is ladycards

Choose wisely and may the hand guiding the mouse be firm and accurate. Not signed up yet? Well, get crackin' man! (or woman). Linkie below:


Commish Mark has banks of laptops set up deep in the secret lair of the CARDINAL COUPLE world headquarters and has our CARDINAL COUPLE staff chimps on the phones to each of the 16 first-round sites for breaking news, trends, off-color jokes and influence-peddling. (Except for Co-Co, who is trying to get her Etch-A-Sketch hooked up to the Internet.) 




  1. It was a great time up there. Hope they keep it there. Thanks for the recap Mark and Jenny. Bad time to go out of town, Paul

    Blue Lou

  2. Shoni is just as good at softball as she is basketball ;-) But they already 20 games in, would never work out lol

  3. Actually, it's a great time to be out-of-town. In Murray, KY and they are absolutely berserk, gone mad bonkers about the Racers and the NCAA.



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