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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

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WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


SPECIAL REPORT


CARDS SWEEP DOUBLEHEADER AGAINST SOUTH FLORIDA.


-Cards run rule South Florida in Game two 9-0


Louisville exploded for five runs in the bottom of the fourth and four runs in the fifth to run-rule South Florida 9-0 in game two. The big shots were Jordan Trimble with a grand slam home run to right center in the fourth and Taner Fowler three run left field fence clearer in the fifth to end the game. Chelsea Leonard gets the win with three innings of relief, allowing just three Bulls hits and striking out three in relief of starter Caralisa Connell. 


With the two wins today, #9 Louisville is alone in first place in the BIG EAST with a conference record of 
11-2. 


-Louisville wins Game one against the Bulls 4-1


Louisville gets a complete game win out of Tori Collins and beats the Bulls 4-1 in the first of two today here at Ulmer Stadium. The Cards got all the runs they needed in the bottom of second inning when Maggie Ruckenbrod hit a 2 RBI single to left with two on and two outs. The Cards added runs in the 3rd and 6th.


Collins struck out eight and allowed six hits against USF. The Bulls got an unearned run in the top of the fifth when Janine Richardson reached on a fielding error and scored on Jessica Mouse's single.


We'll have full recaps of both games in Thursday's Cardinal Couple. 


We're also hearing that Pat Summit will announce her retirement Thursday in a press conference. 


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-Cards, Bulls set to do battle in Ulmer Stadium today


-Okoro throwing it all away


The University of Louisville softball team (38-2, 9-2) heads into their most important double-header of the season so far this season...a 4 p.m. match against BIG EAST leading South Florida. A rare treat for out-of-town Cardinal Softball fans...both games will be televised on ESPNU with Adam Amin and Jennie Finch calling the contest.


The Bulls come into Ulmer at 40-6 and 13-1 in BIG EAST action. They suffered their first defeat of the season last weekend at Connecticut 7-3 but won the other two games against the Huskies. 
Nevins is 0-1 lifetime against the Cards

When you scout the USF squad, Sara Nevins is the first player that stands out. The sophomore pitcher is 23-2 and has a chilling 0.74 ERA. That earned run average is good enough to lead the entire nation. She has 237 strikeouts on the year in 180.2 innings pitched. Opponents bat a minuscule .171 against the lefty and the Bulls defense. 



According to her coach and teammates, Nevins is the main practical joker and stand-up comedian on the squad as well. Easy to be when you leave them dead in the aisles every time you take the mound. 


She'll face the top hitting squad in the BIG EAST today in Louisville, though. The Cards are batting .324 as a unit and have seven players hitting over .300 in the starting lineup.


Stephanie Medina
When USF comes to the plate, the main threats would appear to be Stephanie Medina and Janine Richardson. Both are batting an identical .339 on the season and have seven home runs each. 


Bulls head softball coach Ken Erikson sees the games today like this:


" It's a great time to be here. It's also just another couple of games. We're playing against another bunch of girls. We're not doing anything different. We've been on TV before and that's not going to change how we do things."


USF's Janine Richardson
The Cards and Bulls have a long history of playing each other...the series began back in 2000...Louisville's inaugural season for softball. Louisville coach Sandy Pearsall and Erikson have been on hand for each game. 


Last time the two faced was in the BIG EAST Tournament last year in the quarterfinals at Ulmer. Louisville won 2-0, getting a huge home run off then-freshman Nevins from Colby Wherry. Tori Collins pitched the shutout for the Cards.


First pitch is at 4 p.m. Weather looks great for today's action, so head out to Ulmer and cheer the Cards on! 


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BIG EAST STANDINGS (as of 4/16/12)


USF             13-1  40-6                 Pitt             6-8  23-19
Louisville      9-2   38-2                Providence  5-8  14-26
Syracuse       7-2   30-10              St. John       3-8  15-28
DePaul          7-2   25-13              Seton Hall    2-9  20-22
Notre Dame  5-3   21-13              Georgetown  2-9  17-26
Connecticut  7-5   18-17             Villanova      1-10  27-18
Rutgers         8-8   21-22


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For the second straight week, University of Louisville track and field's CHINWE OKORO has been named the BIG EAST Women's Field Athlete of the week. 


Okoro swept the discus and shot put in the Texas Roadhouse Border Battle last Saturday at Cardinal Park against Kentucky, Indiana and Notre Dame. Her discus toss of 56.24m/184-6 was a personal best for her and ranks fourth nationally this season. It is also the fifth-best throw in school history. Her shot put toss of 16.85m/55-3 ranks eighth nationally and another personal best. It's the third best toss in UofL history, too. 


Both throws top the BIG EAST this year. 


The red-shirt senior from Nigeria is also the holder of the 2011 Nigerian Championship title for shot put. 


Chinwe is one of several field specialist that make up what might be considered the best women's "throwers" in NCAA women's competition. Khadija Abdullah, Jenna Wargo, Amashi Kendall, Patrice Gates and Hannah Baker give coach Ron Mann a deep and veteran group of participants in the discus, shot put, hammer and javelin events.  


Okoro and Abdullah are a odds-on bet to finish 1-2 in any field tossing events they take part in. Wargo is a javelin expert and won the event in the Border Battle. 


Louisville, it seems, is quite adept at "throwing it away".  
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