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Saturday, April 6, 2013

Saturday Cardinal Couple -- Still on the journey



SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Louisville WBB "still on the journey"

-Lacrosse suffers double overtime loss to Irish

-Fan itinerary of events in New Orleans

-CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO This Morning!

-Softball on the road


It was Jeff Walz who said it best after the WBB win over Tennessee in the Oklahoma City Regionals:

"No one expected us to get this far...and we're still on the journey."

A journey that has been as exciting as a roller-coaster ride at an amusement park and just as scary at times.

A journey that has 100's of native Americans travelling 1000's of miles to converge on New Orleans to represent the Schimmel sisters and the Lady Cards in the Final Four.

A journey that very few thought would last this long but has picked up speed, admiration and excitement the longer it lasts.

Louisville is in the final leg of the trek now. Sunday, they'll






face California for the right to play in the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship game on Tuesday night. It was a journey that began with the Cards facing a very good Texas A&M team in the KFC YUM! Center on November 9th. and showing the women's college basketball world that they were a team to be reckoned with in the 2012-13 season by beating the Aggies.


The wins came fast and furious after that. Portland, Austin Peay, Central Florida, Gonzaga, Missouri State, Ut-Martin and EKU all fell to the Cards multi-pronged attack and Louisville went into the Dec. 2nd. game against UK with a 8-0 record and high national ranking.

Say what you will about the loss to Kentucky on Denny Crum Court...but remember that the Cards had a double-digit lead on the eventual #2 seed in Bridgeport before a cold streak and a precocious freshman helped UK eke out a one point win.

The fans had questions. Jeff Walz realized that there were still many games to be played and that the end result of the season was much more important than a early-season regrettable loss to a rival.


Valpo was handled in fine fashion but, on the road without Sara Hammond, Louisville fell prey to a super-hyped Colorado squad. The Cards ended 2012 with three wins and was ready to enter BIG EAST play. Shawnta Dyer suffered a season-ending ACL/MCL injury in practice prior to the Washington State game...a rebounding and scoring force the Cards could ill-afford to lose...but, as we know, injuries are a part of the game.

DePaul pulled off the shocker in Chicago against Louisville. Louisville went through the remainder of the BIG EAST schedule with expected wins but a few more losses...UConn, Syracuse, Notre Dame and a puzzling defeat at home to South Florida three weeks after beating the Bulls in Tampa. The Cards finished the BIG EAST slate at 11-5 and had secured the #4 seed in the BIG EAST Tournament.

After a double bye and quarterfinal win over a determined St. John squad...the Irish were next in the semis. After a strong, encouraging first half...the Cards were routed and awaited their NCAA seeding fate.

Most expected a #4 or #5 seed. Selection Monday came and Louisville was a #5 and faced with the prospects of playing Sun Belt champion MTSU to open the tournament in the YUM! MTSU trailed big early, made a huge rally and then a huge fold as Louisville advanced to take on #4 seed and BIG 10 Tournament champion Purdue. The Boilermakers never got untracked and Louisville gained the win and the assignment of facing #1 in the land Baylor.

You know the rest of this story. Giant-killers, the ugly ducklings...ruiners of all traditional and expected...the Lady Cards find themselves in Fat City with a huge assignment ahead.
ESPY, yes. Title...nope

Perfect.

You beat Baylor and Tennessee...well, California just doesn't strike fear into your heart. The Cards have played with no fear, no worries and no pressure. We hope that continues. We feel certain it will. When they tip it up Tuesday night and Louisville goes against either UConn or Notre Dame, remember that they are one of two teams still standing...and that is remarkable and amazing in itself. Notice I said when...because I do believe that Louisville will defeat Cal. Belief. An important thing

Sure, Connecticut and Notre Dame both beat Louisville in the regular season. This isn't the same team that faced them, though...and with a little

prayer, luck, looseness and belief...it just might happen.

Lady Cards. The 2013 NCAA Women's Champs. Nothing to lose, nothing to fear...playing on the house's money.

How great would it be to have both the 2013 men's and women's NCAA Basketball champs trophies in the case down in the athletic offices down on Floyd Street?

Believe.

(Just in case you've missed it, here's the gif of Mulkey going Gangum Style below)

LINK:

She's a dancin' dancin' dancin' dancin' machine


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Tough loss for Lacrosse Friday at Louisville Lacrosse Stadium to #7 Notre Dame...falling 16-15 in double overtime.

Kinda.

Lacrosse rules for overtime are that the first session is six minutes long. If a tie still exists, it goes to a sudden-death second overtime.

What kinda way is that to run an airlines? Can you imagine softball, hoops or volleyball with that rule in place?

Nevertheless, the Cards..behind an eventual six Nikki Boltja and four Katie Oliverio goals...led by three with 16:35 left in regulation. A strong Irish finish sent it O.T., though and the teams played the first OT to another tie...Katie knocking one home with 2:20 remaining to force the second session.

Then, this silly second overtime stuff. The teams change goals they defend after three minutes in overtime. The score was 15-15 after the first three minutes of the second overtime. 19 seconds later, the Irish scored and the game was over. Barely enough time to get set and situated after changing ends of the field. Why not just play out the remaining 2:41? It's not like they're paying rent for the facility by the hour or anything...

WE are still learning things about Lacrosse here at CARDINAL COUPLE. One thing we've learned is that the overtime system sucks...

Louisville (7-4, 0-3) entertains Syracuse Sunday at noon. It's the 'Cuse's first year playing Lacrosse. This should be fun...

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Here's a list of things happening in New Orleans over the next four days. Party on!

NCAA Final Four Ticket Pick Up
Saturday
1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.
Sheraton New Orleans - Lagniappe Room - 2nd Floor
** To avoid will call on game day at the arena, we would like

"Hey, Merl...let's head down to Nawlins and watch sum hoops!"
to encourage you to pick up your tickets from University of Louisville staff. Any unclaimed tickets will be taken to the New Orleans Arena on game day for pick up. Will call at the arena will start at 4 p.m. at the New Orleans Box Office located on Dave Dixon Drive.

( We don't think that Dave is Merl and Daryl's brother or dad...but you never really know...I guess. WALKERS!)



Men's Basketball Final Four Watch Party
Saturday
4 p.m.
The Crazy Lobster
500 Port of New Orleans Place, Suite 83
**This event is free to fans. If able, the women's team will make an apperance (no autographs).

Pre-game Semifinals Send Off
Sunday
Time:TBD
Sheraton New Orleans-Lobby
**Free to fans. Pep Band, Cheer and Dance team will perform

(Potential) Men's Basketball National Championship Game Watch
Monday
The Crazy Lobster
500 Port of New Orleans Place, Suite 83
7:30 p.m.
** Free to fans

(Potential) Pre-Game Finals Send Off
Tuesday
Time:TBD
Sheaton New Orleans-Lobby
**Free to fans. Pep Band, Cheer and Dance team will perform

Sounds like Tom Jurich and the gang have a lot planned for those headed or already in New Orleans. Be sure to check our comments section here at CARDINAL COUPLE over the next four days for fan reaction, reports and comments.

AND:

Yes, the CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR is STILL on this morning from 11 a.m. - noon. It'll just be Paulie (and maybe Sonja) in the studio. Two staffers already on the way to NOLA, one covering a volleyball event today and one already in Atlanta for the men's Final Four.

And all I got was a lousy t-shirt.

Nevertheless, it'll be a fun show with plenty of sound-bytes from the arrival of the CARDS back on campus Wednesday, some "can't miss" Kim Mulkey clips, reports on basketball, softball and lacrosse.

Without Jenny and Jeff in the studio, it's going to be a challenge and a test, but we think we cdayan, we think we can.

We'll try to hookup with Jenny via phone as well during the show....out there on the road to NOLA.

If you miss the live broadcast, don't fret or make gnashing noises...it'll be archived on the site like the others are..on the heavenly Soundcloud...where angels fly and pigs don't.

It's on Crescent Hill Radio. Link below:

CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO ON CRESCENT HILL RADIO

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You can catch UofL Softball on ESPN3 today against St. John's. First pitch is noon, so right after you listen to the CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO SHOW, stay on your laptop or PC and watch the Softball Cards do battle. They play the Red Storm Saturday and Sunday and then head to Providence for a Tuesday double-header.

Over the fence and around the bases. It's what they do...


-Paulie

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5 comments:

  1. Greetings from warm, sunny NOLA. Getting ready to head to the arena for autograph session and open practices. We ate breakfast this morning with four real nice UConn fans. They thanked us for sending Kim Mulkey back to her garden.

    It's a great day to be a Cardinal!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Just got back from open practice and picking up tickets for tomorrow.

    Random thoughts from today's Cal and Cardinal practices:

    - UConn has a bunch of fans here. They outnumber the other three schools combined so far. But Cardinal ticket staff says we should have at least 1,000 here Sunday.

    - I'm not very familiar with Cal's roster, but #23 Clarendon is obviously a player. Very athletic and shoots it well. Cal's bigs didn't look particularly tall or athletic but are all solid - not a string-bean among them.

    - It was great to see Laura Terry at the team hotel and Michelle Clark-Heard at the arena. I was lucky enough to get to have a long talk with Julie Hermann at the autograph session. She's awesome!

    - At the autograph session Coach Walz assured me that he brought two dress shirts this time...lol.

    - Coach Walz, Coach Norman and Coach Neubauer, along with a few other staffers, were wearing T-shirts with the following on the back: #PARTYCRASHERS

    - Asia Taylor was in uniform and participated fully in the practice. She didn't look very rusty to me. Tia Gibbs was also in uniform but just assisted with the drills, didn't practice.

    - Sara Hammond missed a bunch of shots early in the practice. I'm pretty sure that I heard her say, laughing, that she could build a house with all the shots she'd bricked.

    - Nita Slaughter, Jude and (especially) Shoni were knocking down shots from everywhere. And Bria Smith made five or six threes in a row.

    - At the end of 50 minutes of spirited, structured practice, Walz called the team to mid-court and they spent about 4 minutes tossing up mid-court shots. Laughing, joking and high-fiving Walz and each other whenever one went in. Walz even took a few 15-foot jumpers. He still has a nice shooting touch.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great stuff, Mike! Had lunch today here in town and our waiter used to shoot around in the SAC with several of the Lady cards in the summer a few years back. Said Asia used to be ferocious as a freshman in one-on-one games. Glad to here she still "has it".

    Paulie

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  4. I didn't realize the marriage was a bet, Rick said to Cece that if Louisville beats Baylor he will marry her lol wow, after 25 years. The article is in NY Times--umatilla23

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    Replies
    1. I guess Cece mentioned it to him lol He just said one word "ok" lol thats awesome though--Umatila23

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