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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Wednesday Cardinal Couple -- FEAR THE BUCKET!

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WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

(Staff columnist Jenny O'Bryan takes us on a tour of the KFC YUM! Center. FEAR THE BUCKET!)

- CARDINAL HOME UNEQUALED IN NATION

Louisville Women’s basketball is fortunate to call the KFC YUM! Center home.  Along with all the glitz and glamor of a new arena, it boasts a seating capacity of 22,000+.

The women’s basketball team has sold the arena out on two occasions and has come very close to selling out on several more occasions.  The volleyball squad has broken it’s home attendance record twice this season when playing at the YUM Center.  Fans flock to the arena in the thousands to see Louisville Women’s Athletics take to the court.    Whether it be a weekend evening game, a middle of the week evening game, or even like last year, a middle of the day workday game, Louisville fans show up in droves to support their team. 

The upper half of the arena is not always open for women’s games.  When it is not open, black curtains are drawn across the upper half and the bowl (or bucket as some refer to it) has an even more intimate feel.   With 10,000+ fans in the bucket, with every seat a good seat, the home crowd has helped to propel our team to victory on more than one occasion. (We have also been known to make it a little uncomfortable for the refs when we feel a bad call has been made).

The arena is a spectacular environment from this fans perspective and allows one the feeling of being very close and a part of the action.  The place is regularly rocking at near deafening noise levels trying to will our team to victory.   I have even been known to take friends to a game who are not particularly sports minded folks, who have enjoyed themselves so much in the atmosphere that they have come back.
It really is hard to attend a women’s athletic event at the YUM! Center and not enjoy oneself.   

This season offers women’s athletic fans not only regular season opportunities to come support your team, but also post season opportunities.  The Women’s Volleyball Championship will be held at the YUM! Center this year.  Tickets are now on sale to this event.  While it remains to be seen whether or not Louisville Volleyball will be playing during this two day event, Coach Anne Kordes is poised to get her team there, if not this year, then very, very soon.   As Jeff mentioned in a previous entry, depending on how the VolleyCards finish their season, they may be poised to host early round games of the Volleyball tournament.  It is an exciting time to be a VolleyCard fan, and not too late to jump on the train.  Get on now, Cards fans, because we are in for some exciting opportunities with Coach Kordes and her squad.  You can find ticket information to the Volleyball Championship at the following link:

While the first few days of practice are just now under the belt of Louisville Women’s Basketball, it is not too soon to be thinking about postseason play for our basketball team, either.  Season ticket holders were treated to pre-sale tickets of first and second round postseason games also held at YUM Center March 24/26 th  just last week.    Tickets went on sale to the general public on Monday, October 1.   If you have not already done so, you can purchase your tickets at:  http://www.ncaa.com/news/basketball-women/article/2010-12-19/ticket-information  or call the Louisville Athletic Ticketing Office at (502) 852-5151.

The past two tournaments Louisville basketball has played on the road against the home team.  It will be an incredible opportunity for Louisville Women’s Basketball and their fans (that’s us, folks!) to showcase our team, our fans, and our home court at the YUM! Center.  We have been second in attendance the last two years in basketball, and this is the year we take our spot atop that list as a growing fan base. This is the year that we show the NCAA and the Big East that Louisville supports women’s basketball, can support opening rounds in the Big Dance and also deserves the chance to host the Big East Tournament (though, that is an article for another day). 

Louisville fans, this is our time to shine!   Athletic Director Tom Jurich and all the staff associated with Louisville Women’s Athletics have positioned Louisville as a competitive women’s program across the board.  This year we have at least two opportunities at the YUM Center (maybe more) to show the athletic community, on a national level, that we can and do support our female athletes.  If you have not bought your postseason tickets yet, do it now.  If you have not attended a game of your favorite women’s squad, do it now.  If you are not a women’s basketball season ticket holder yet, do it now!   

I coined a phrase here a few weeks back.  It was after the Louisville vs. Kentucky volleyball match.  It was a spirited, if not rowdy affair.  YUM! Center was rocking as if it were hosting a concert instead of an athletic event.  If you were there, you know what I mean.  If you were not there, or have yet to be at a women’s event at YUM, then get there.  Once you experience it, you will know what I mean: 
Fear the Bucket!

( Thanks to Jenny for today's column on the home of several UofL athletic sporting events! As she says...if you have yet to be at a women's event at the KFC YUM! Center...GET THERE! Also, hats off to Venue Services for the excellent job they do there in providing security, safety and information at events in the YUM! Great folks!)

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OUR NEXT FIRST ROUND matchup in the "Pick your favorite UofL women's athlete" features two highly successful Lady Cards that you may not know a whole lot about.

MICHELLE MOLODYNIA (Niagara Falls, ONT.) is a sophomore on Louisville's women's Cross Country squad. She was the team's #2 finisher in five out of six meets last season. So far this year, she has finished first of all CARDINAL runners in three events and placed second overall in the Evansville Mid-American event. We'll take a guess and figure she'll be an integral part of the UofL women's track team as well as a distance runner.




ERIN BENNETT ( Old Lyme, CT.) is a senior on the UofL Rowing team. She's been selected ALL BIG-EAST the last two seasons and will be a prime factor on the Cards' Varsity Eight boat again this year. She led the Cards to the BIG EAST title in the Championships last year.


You can vote for one of these two Cardinal stars on the left side of the site.

Boats vs. Running, who will advance?

Finally, CONGRATULATIONS to Volleyball's Gwen Rucker...who won a close match against Lacrosse's Nikki Boltja in Sweet Sixteen action. She advances to the Great Eight.
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13 comments:

  1. There is no doubt UofL has the best facility for womens' basketball and volleyball in the nation. I will second Jenny's sentiment. If you haven't been to the YUM! you need to go. Can't wait till Mercedes Russell gets here to play in it.

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  2. My, my...we've come a long way from the days at Thomas Jefferson H.S. where there were maybe 200 in the seats for hoops and half of them were parents, students and facility.

    Paulie

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    1. Hey, I went to TJ, back in the 70's! I did go to a few ladies' hoops games.

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    2. Ugh, I remember those TJ powerhouse football teams running all over the mighty Fern Creek Tigers back then, K. Still have nightmares about chasing Hill, Northington and Gathright into the end zone...LOL

      Paulie

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  3. You may have a newer arena but you cannot match Tennessee's attendance for women's basketball and you never will. We will continue strong and seriously, you think hot-head Walz is a better coach than Holly? Look at Angel. No discipline, temper issues and not what Pat and Holly would have produced and developed. Parker, Holsclaw, you can name the rest.

    You can wear your red-colored glasses, Jenny, but your Cardinals will always be second fiddle to the greatest program in women's college basketball. UT. Deal with it. A shiny arena doesn't mean success.

    A Vols fan.

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    1. Hey Vols Fan - I don't claim that Lousiville is the greatest program in women's college basketball, but if you seriously think that Tennessee under Holly is going to be, here's a wager I would like to make with you: You pay me $100 each time Walz wins a NC; I'll pay you $100 each time Holly wins one.
      Do we have a deal?
      PDX Phil

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    2. WRT attendance numbers. We haven't matched Tennessee's attendance numbers for women's basketball...at least average numbers (one-time records are bogus because we just play in a larger arena...both teams have sold out their arena)...but we're a not-very-distant 2nd place and have seen very steady and significant increases in all of the years that I've been a season ticket holder. Obviously that can't continue indefinitely, but if it goes on for even a couple of years more, the numbers look like Louisville will indeed surpass Tennessee for season average attendance.

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    3. Why, thank you Vol fan. I absolutely will keep wearing my red colored glasses, this is , after all, a blog about Louisville Women's Athletics.

      Jenny

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  4. Hey PDX Phil,

    You are on.

    A Vols Fan

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    Replies
    1. Boys, boys! All in good fun but CARDINAL COUPLE is NOT a wagering site! If you guys want to meet me out at Churchill...OK, but keep it above board. Thanks!

      Paulie

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  5. Holsclaw was and is a major hot-head. For that matter, Pat Summitt is a hot-head. I've seen her rip apart players on national television. That is why only the best could play for her! Sorry Vols fan, but Tennessee is in a downward slide...have been for quite some time. Most preseason rankings have the Vols in the bottom of the Top 25. Not bad, but not the same UT we saw five years ago.

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  6. We wish TN women athletes a great future and continued fair support from their athletic department which has been enjoyed for a long time. UL fans have no reason to be upset with TN fans. the problems of one does not make better the situation of the other.

    Litigation such as that recently filed against TN is available for the purpose of obtaining or continuing a level playing field for women for without it I believe we would look more like the women's athletic situation of the 70-80's than that enjoyed in 2012. Let the courts sort out fact from fiction and not fight with other women's athletic team supporters as there are already enough people still out there with pre-title IX mentalities who would relegate women athletes to 2nd class playing field citizens.

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  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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