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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Wednesday Cardinal Couple -- Redemption Train halted. UConn93 - UofL 60



WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Lady Cards fall in Championship Game by 33


Connecticut stopped the Cardinals in their tracks. The UConn squad that emerged with a new purpose after losing to Notre Dame in the BIG EAST finals didn't miss a beat tonight in a dismantling of Jeff Walz's Louisville Cardinals 93-60 Tuesday night in New Orleans.

The Cards did make a game of it for awhile. Buoyed by a game-opening three from Sara Hammond, Louisville battled the Huskies with skill and smarts for the first six minutes of the game. Bria Smith's free throw with 13:53 left in the first half gave Louisville a 14-10 lead.

You had to believe at that point. The Cards were hitting shots and making free throws. Taking the fight right to UConn and frustrating them...as evidenced by Caroline Doty's flagrant foul, cheap-shot elbow to Bria Smith's face just three minutes into the game.

Then, the wheels fell off Redemption Train. The ugly ducklings and party crashers got tossed by the bouncer. 

Bria Hartley scored back-to-back baskets to tie it. Kaleena

Mosqueda-Lewis cashed in on a +1. Breanna Stewart drained a three and then hit a two on the next possession. She scored again with 9:46 on the clock. Hartley nailed two free throws and Mosqueda-Lewis popped another three home to cap a 19-0 UConn run over a five minute stretch...making the score 29-14 UConn at the 8:44 mark. 


Three players. Nineteen points. Walz looked on helpless. It was sound, fundamental clutch basketball and you can't coach against that.

And...that was the end of any hopes of Louisville pulling off the major upset. Although the Lady Cards would play the Huskies even until halftime...Louisville went in at the half behind 48-29.

The Cards would offer a brief rally in the final period. Down 60-38...back-to-back threes from Monique Reid (surprise!) and Jude Schimmel had the Cards within 16 points with 13:03 left on the clock.

It was just poking the bear.

UConn responded with a 23-6 run over the next six and one half minutes before Bria Smith hit a jumper to make it 84-52 with 6:20 left in the game.

Breanna Stewart led all scorers...the freshman ending her incredible tournament run with 23 against the Cards. Sara Hammond finished with 15 for Louisville. 11 in the first twenty minutes. 13 in the first 21 minutes. No other UofL players reached double digits.

An incredible run for the Lady Cards, though, this season. a cornerstone in creating an image that isn't based on the Angel McCoughtry effect. An incredible post-season run by  a team that believed, bought in to the coaches teachings and shocked the women's basketball world several times over the last couple of weeks.

Sometimes...you just get beat by a better team, though... and that happened Tuesday night. Congrats to the Huskies.

They were incredible to watch Tuesday night...those Huskies were. And, they have most of their squad returning next season.

It won't be the BIG EAST...instead, the AAC or whatever you want to coin it. Maybe the BIG EAST will take them back...or us, for a season. You don't want these Huskies.

 Oh, boy...

This Cardinal team will be back, however... and a contender again next season. A heartfelt thanks to all the Lady Cards for making this party a fun one to crash. You gave us joy, pride, hope and the incredible, improbable, wild thrill of beating a team that everyone said would not lose. Covering you was a privledge, not a task and very incredible at times. Win or lose, you girls are the greatest.

The future looks bright for Jeff Walz's Lady Cards.

When's the first pre-season game for 2013-14?

--Paulie

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22 comments:

  1. Depth and lack of speed at several positions killed is in this game. We have to recruit faster and bigger players in the future.

    Walton and Deines are destined to be recruited over. 10 and 5. Nothing to show for it on the box score. I think Emmonnie Henderson and Cannon may get the nod over them next season.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Courtnee and Megan are destined to be staples of future Card teams, bank on it. Some freshmen are not meant to make a huge splash, and these two got thrown into the fire. But, I see some talent and they do play for one of the best coaches out there who will get them to play up to it. Championship game against the well oiled machine that is UConn and this is what you're basing their stats on? Totally unfair! And who the heck knows WHAT Henderson and Cannon will do once they get here.

      Delete
    2. You have obviously seen neither play. Henderson is a beast and may be our best player by her sophomore year.

      Delete
    3. No, I have not seen her or Cannon play. But I have seen Megan and Courtnee play. And beasting in high school doesn't necessarily translate into being a college freshman beast. Not saying what Henderson will or will not do, just don't think it's time to throw Courtnee or Megan under the bus. Let them develop!

      Delete
  2. We should done this, done that, this should happened that should happened. What more can we ask missing players to injuries, Monique playing injured. We shudda been 2-1, but ended up 5-1 in post season. They instilled in all of us anything can happen. No one can claim a better upset in women's bball. What a run! Schimmels gave alot of hope to Natives all across the US and Canada. Thanks Louisville, you gained thousands more fans from ndn country!!!

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  3. It looked like our girls gave up after Jude picked up her 3rd. Seeing her cry on the bench was disheartening. She is a competitor, though. But was still an aamzing run. UConn will probably win at least 3 or 4 more NC in the next 5 years. They have too much talent. Hoping this run will give us a top 3 - 5 recruiting class.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Full Credit to UConn. If Stewart is going to play like she did against ND and the Cards for the next three years Geno will have 11 titles before his next contract is finished. They were amazing and were clearly the class the the tourney.

    That doesn't take away from our Cards. Best underdog run in WCBB tourney history. Unbelievable effort, coaching and coming together. Will certainly help our recruiting and future.

    It's All Good!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Walz seemed pretty confident in his post game press about recruiting so I am sure this helped. I honestly don't see us losing more than 6 regular season games next season. ND will be gone so we should be clear fav for finishing 2nd in the new BE.

    A name to keep and eye out for is Ariana Freeman. Recently decommited from WVU. Combo guard and is top 20 on different scouting sites. 2014

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a great run. I couldn't be prouder of these women. Glad I got to be there. Met some old friends and made several new ones. We'll be back.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Of course, I wish we had played them better, but...UConn wasn't having any of that! And Stewart is phenomenal!
    Still proud of what these ladies accomplished this year and looking forward to seeing what they can accomplish next season. Think the future is looking bright, most everybody back with reinforcements on the way!

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  8. There were warning signs galore leading up to the game. UConn was playing with a mission and after the Notre Dame win in the semis...an impressive victory over a team that had their number three previous time...it was going to take a huge miracle to beat these "reborn" Huskies.

    It wasn't to be. With Stewart, Mosqueda-Lewis, Dolson, Hartley all back next year and another top recruiting class coming in, plus an average AAC to compete in (except for Louisville) the Huskies are scary, indeed.

    Paulie

    ReplyDelete
  9. We played great. We came up against up a revitalized UConn powerhouse. UConn was on a mission after dismantling Notre Dame.UConn was determined and focused. We have to get back to work. Work on jumpers. Put the work in the summer and prepare for 2014 Finals in Nashville.

    ReplyDelete
  10. In response here to an-email I received privately... Lady Cards have 12 players returning (including Tia) and Janelle Cannon and "E-Money!" Henderson coming on board. Not sure but I think Starr Breedlove is also coming? Will have to research that. Then we know for sure that Syd Brackemyre will be here an 2014 and wait till you get a load of her! The Mitchell's in Cincy? Others? Time will tell on these, but we've shown we produce an exciting and competitive product that ANY 2014 and beyond recruit MUST consider. Our fan base? Second to none!Our Coach? He pushes players to success and just look at Nita from her freshman year to here or Jude...The man knows what he is doing and how to do it successfully.

    One thing you can say with certainy is that this staff and this group of players will not rest, will not falter and will direct their efforts to end up in Nashville this time next year.

    And, I believe they will. Add a healthy Asia, Shawnta and "E-Money!" to the front line. Add Janelle Cannon and Monny Niamke to the guard contingent. Maybe Breedlove too.

    We're in the AAC and so is UConn...so we may be second best in that conference in the year we are in it...but I guarantee you Walz and the Lady Cards concede nothing and will go for the regular season title.

    Here's an interesting question...the AAC will obviously have a Conference Tournament. Can we wrestle it away from Hartford and have it HERE for the women?

    Wouldn't that be cool? Or...would they bother to give it to a team/university that is leaving in 2014? Your thoughts?

    Paulie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't forget Davionna Holmes-the volleyball transfer. Just looking at her in warmups, I can tell she can play the game. Not to mention this most recent run should open us up to other top recruits that may not have been looking at us previously.
      One other thing-maybe we can't get the whatever conference tourney-but does anyone know if we put another bid in for opening round NCAA tourney games, and if we got it?

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    2. I did forget Davy and thanks for the reminder. Hope she does play for us next year. Strong inside and can hit the mid-range and three also from what I hear. Have heard nothing yet on 2014 sites. We'd love that again!

      Paulie

      Delete
  11. I hope Walz takes a look Mariah Stacona of WarmSpings Rez/Madras H.S. in Oregon. I like to see our ppl stay local, but I've been a Louisville fan since Schimmels showed up and would love to see her there :-) PDX Phil have you saw Mariah Stacona?--Umatilla23

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    Replies
    1. also, Mariah plays for Shoni/Judes old elite ball club Oregon Reign--Umatilla23

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    2. Coach Walz does check the site and also the comments so...if he doesn't know about her yet...he does now. Thanks Umatilla23!

      Delete
  12. UConn is NOT in the ACC. So in 2014, U of L will not be playing them. They may join the ACC, but they are NOT in yet!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All American Conference, or something like that, is the name of the new league that UL will play in next year and that UConn is sentenced to until...that's where the AAC comes from.

      Delete
    2. The ACC and the AAC are two seperate entities. We are in the AAC for a year, then to the ACC.

      Or, as the Jackson Five sang..."ABC, it's easy as 123..as simple as Do Re ME...ABC, 123 BABY you and me."

      UConn is in the AAC, not going to the ACC and FYI...the POA on the NCAA is that the SEC is SOL when it comes to FSU, UNC or UVA.

      UConn would love an invite to the ACC, no doubt...but that hasn't been offered.
      Imagine Geno in a conference with no Motre Dame. UofL, DePaul, Syracuse or St. John's.
      KInda like stealing candy from a baby.

      Conference alignment. Changes every 5000 miles, just like your oil should.

      Paulie

      Delete
    3. I'm thinking it is America's Athletic Conference. Wouldn't it be great if ABC, AMC or A&E picked up AAC sports?

      OK, getting dizzy with all these initials. Need some R&R ASAP.

      Paulie

      Delete

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