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Friday, February 28, 2014



FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Griner talks about Baylor loss to UofL


Phoenix Mercury center Brittney Griner covers a number of topics in her new book, In My Skin.
It includes how her school, Baylor University, dealt with the topic of her homosexuality.

The book, hits stores April 8. USA Today was provided with an advanced copy.

In excerpts from the book, Griner said she felt pain at Baylor even though she received support for her sexual orientation.
“I would love to be an ambassador for Baylor, to show my school pride, but it’s hard to do that — it’s hard to stand up and say, ‘Baylor is the best!’ — when the administration has a written policy against homosexuality,” Griner wrote.”I’ve spent too much of my life being made to feel like there’s something wrong with me. And no matter how much support I felt as a basketball player at Baylor, it still doesn’t erase all the pain I felt there.”
Griner helped Baylor win a national championship in 2012. In 2013, the Bears were ranked No. 1 and had won 32 straight games before they were upset by Louisville in the Sweet 16. The Mercury drafted Griner No. 1 overall in the 2013 WNBA draft.
“Cracks existed beneath the surface. And the game against Louisville, with the pressure cranked up, blew those cracks wide open … I didn’t deliver the way I usually did, and Kim got outcoached. We both underperformed,” Griner said.

THE STATEMENT AND THE WORDS DO NOTHING TO UNDERMINE THE BIGGEST UPSET IN WOMEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL HISTORY. IT'S EASY TO HAVE 20/20 HINDSIGHT. TO POINT THE FINGER AT OTHER THINGS.

GRINER WASN'T THE ONLY PLAYER ON THE COURT FOR THE BEARS THAT NIGHT. THEY FAILED TO STOP LOUISVILLE'S THREE POINT SHOOTING OR MONIQUE REID DRIVING TO THE BASKET. THEY COULD SOLVE THE WALZ-DESIGNED DEFENSE.

THE IMAGE OF SHONI SCHIMMEL BARKING AT GRINER AFTER THE 'IMPOSSIBLE' BASKET WILL LIVE IN LEGACY AND TESTIMONY AS A EXAMPLE OF 'THE LITTLE TRAIN THAT COULD' AND RAGING AGAINST THE NIGHT ....LONG AFTER GRINER'S ACCOMPLISHMENT ON THE COURT HAVE ENDED.

SELF-THERAPY BY GRINER HERE? POINTING THE FINGER AT THE SCHOOL AND THE COACH INSTEAD OF THE REAL FAILURE...BAYLOR'S INABILITY TO STOP LOUISVILLE FROM SCORING?  IT'S EASY TO SAY, "OH, I DIDN'T GIVE IT MY BEST" AFTER YOU LOSE. EXCUSES COME EASIER WITH TIME.

YOU GOT BEAT, BRIT. DEAL WITH IT.

PAULIE
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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Thursday Cardinal Couple -- Walz named assistant on USA WBB U18 National Team



THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Staley, KBA and Walz to lead in FIBA Americas U18


Jeff Walz has the end of May planned for him already. It's when the trials for the 2014 USA Women's FIBA U18 National Team will be held (May 23-27) at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He'll be an assistant coach for the team...Dawn Staley (South Carolina) assuming the head coaching duties and Kim Barnes Arico..."KBA" as we refer to her here at CARDINAL COUPLE...also being selected as an assistant.

Here's what the Louisville WBB head coach had to say about the honor:

" I am honored to have been selected to represent USA Basketball as an assistant coach for the U18 Women's National Team. Since beginning in this profession, the realization of this endeavor has been a life-long ambition. I am thrilled to be amongst some of the greatest collegiate coaches and hope to contribute both on and off the court. I appreciate USA Basketball for recognizing my passion and will work diligently to help mentor and coach some of the most talented women in the game."

To participate in the trials, players must have been born on or after Jan 1, 1996. They receive invites to try out.

An interesting sidebar to the selection process is that a committee, and not the coaches, make the selection on who makes the squad. All the coaches do is coach who is selected.

This, of course, eliminates any potential favoritism situations that could possibly arise. A scan of the 2010 and 2012 rosters shows them heavily laden with UConn and Tennessee players...but no coaches from either school were coaches on these teams.

Sometimes, talent does win out.

Where the actual games will be played has not been officially decided yet or released. Eight national teams from North, South and Central America and the Caribbean will participate in the games, which are held every two years.

Whether any of the future Cards will have a shot at the squad remains to be seen. We'll keep you updated.

paulie
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Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Wednesday Cardina Couple -- Lacrosse moves into top 20...Hoops final tests



WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Louisville Lacrosse checks in at #20

- Before the Huskies....the Bearcats



Al and the Pep Band are Lacrosse-friendly
WE were impressed with Louisville Lacrosse's Virginia road trip over the weekend. Convincing wins for the Cards at Old Dominion and William & Mary. The pollsters must have been, also...since the Cards have jumped into the top 20...at #20 in the latest lacrosse poll and rankings.

Louisville will host #18 Denver on Saturday afternoon @ 1 p.m. over at the Louisville Lacrosse Stadium.

This final season in the BIG EAST is the calm before the storm. When the Cards migrate south into the ACC, they'll be facing the powerhouses of the women's lacrosse D1 world. They got a taste of the supremacy to start the season with a narrow loss to Duke.  

Despite my camera ineptitude, Lacrosee ladies still look pretty
Six of the top ten schools in the recent rankings are ACC. Notre Dame was knocking at the door at #12. Louisville will test the Irish in South Bend on March 8th. A win there, as well as a win Sunday over Denver will serve as an example that the LAX bunch are legit.

Finish. It's the lacrosse "word" of the season. After Sunday, they might add another word as well...

Travel.

Eight of the next nine after Denver are on the road.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I had a couple of co-workers grilling me about the upcoming UofL women's basketball game Monday night in the KFC YUM Center. These are die-hard men's basketball fans who haven't given the ladies a try in a live venue yet.

Upper deck? No problem. It's where they're perched for Pitino's games.

It is the talk around town.

May I suggest, though, that we focus on the next game before jumping directly into the dogsled and trying to mush those Huskies. Up the river from our fair city is Cincinnati. It's another underachieving year for the Bearcats, in terms of a won/loss conference record, but not a team that is residing in the AAC cellar.

In fact, Bearcat 6'2" forward Jeanise Randolph was the Player of the Week in the AAC last week. Nine double-doubles on the season. Alyesha Lovett put up 20 points against the Owls. Jasmine Whitfield has seen the double figure ledger several times and Kayla Cook can bomb away from beyond the arc.

Jamelle Elliott, UC head coach, is not going to stand by idly when the Cards come to visit this Saturday at 2 p.m. She rarely stays still as a rule when coaching...leading an observer at the UofL vs. Cincy game at the KFC YUM! Center to remark about the former UConn star...

"If her squad exerted as much energy as she does during a game, they'd be in contention for the conference title."

OK, I don't see that...but if there was ever a "trap" game scenario brewing, this is it. Highly favored team goes on the road, with a classic matchup two days after this one lined up. Underdog comes out hot, stays hot and delivers the upset over their rival.

I think A-Tayy would make a good news person, don't you?
It probably won't happen. Louisville beat UC in Louisville by nineteen. (Why is it that it seems we beat everyone by nineteen?). The Cards are a veteran, talented group that can reload many times with multiple attack weapons should a couple fail in the Queen City. Asia Taylor should school the UC front liners and Shoni bombed away for 21 last time.

But, never look too far ahead. UConn is still coming to the KFC YUM! on 3/3/14. Take care of business 3/1/14 first...

paulie
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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Tuesday Cardinal Couple - Another Year of the Cardinals?

Is This Another Year of the Cardinals?



We've finished fall sports, are well into basketball season and have solidly kicked off spring sports.

This summer was filled with rampant speculation and discussion about whether we could have another "Year of the Cardinals" like we did in 2013, so let's look at where we are.

First, the fall sports.

Volleyball

Anne Kordes' Volleyball team played in The American conference this year.  They had a good year, though, to be honest, I don't think we can call it stellar.  The American didn't hold a conference tournament in volleyball, but UofL did rip through their regular season conference schedule unblemished, walking away, easily, with the conference championship.  Unfortunately, the out-of-conference schedule didn't look quite so rosy.  The road-heavy non-conference regular season schedule resulted in a 5-7 record, plus a loss in the first round of the NCAA tournament.

Though Kordes has shared with fans her philosophy of scheduling tough out-of-conference schedules, particularly when you're having to make up for a weaker set of conference foes, it appears that the wide-net Cards just weren't quite up to the task of that schedule this year.

This was a good season, but I don't think we can call it a great one.

Soccer

The men's soccer squad rounded out the season with an 11-5-4 record.  Not too shabby, and with a 5-
1-2 record in The American Conference, edging out UConn for the regular season conference championship.  This will fall into another good season.  A quick exit from the conference tournament doesn't help the picture particularly, and an exit from the NCAA tourney in the second round doesn't help much either.  A point of interest, though neither good nor bad in my mind for this discussion was the collection of 11 overtimes that the team participated in during their play this year across 6 games.

Women's soccer tallied a 12-5-2 overall record, 8-1 in conference, and were edged out of the regular season conference championship by one point.  Also with 6 games going into extra play, but only 9 total overtimes, the women's soccer team departed both The American Conference tournament as well as The NCAA tournament in the first round.

I think both soccer seasons fall into the good, but also not great category.

Field Hockey

A 6-1 conference record in The Big East Conference...yes, Paulie, I said The Big East...The Cards claimed a share of the regular season conference championship as part of their march to one of the best ever overall records for the program of 15-5.  As great as that is, that is, unfortunately, about all their is in the positive column for this sport.  A first round exit from the conference tournament, and not getting an at-large bid to the NCAA resulting in a disappointingly early end of play for Coach Sowry's Field Hockey squad.

Still, a good season for a program that you can see progressing year to year.

Football

Some people have wrapped the fall successes of the UofL Football team into the previous Year of the
Cardinals because they're counting a calendar year, while I prefer to think of academic years instead.

12-1 overall, 7-1 in conference was good enough to land a rather prestigious bowl, as well as a very entertaining one on twitter (@RussellAthBowl), but not enough to land a BCS bowl bid.  Alas, with the sole loss of the team being in conference, it also knocked us out of The American Conference championship.

I'd say this was a great year for UofL Football, but not a Year-of-the-Cardinals level year.

Basketball

The men's basketball team is ranked in the top 10, while the women...do I really even need to say...are enjoying the position in the Top 5.  Both teams are hanging on to a chance to win The American Conference regular season championships, or at least a share of it in the case of the women's team.  Both teams are rolling with some impressive momentum, even if the mens' beards are a bit hit and miss.  Deep conference tournament runs are likely along with good seedings to make deep NCAA tourney runs.

Here's where we start to pin some hopes for more "Year of the Cardinals" finishes.  We're close to wrapping up regular season play with hopes for post-seasons high.

Softball

A rough start for Softball, though with a good weekend just finished, they've climbed back
above .500 and hopefully are settling in for a good season. A tough weekend trip to California awaits. If Pearsall can get her pitching consistant and the bats re-energized on a regular basis, a fairly weak AAC awaits them.

Lacrosse

Despite a loss to a very good Duke team, it looks like a really good start for the Lacrosse team.  Only in its seventh year in existence, WE here at the Cardinal Couple are keeping a close eye on this team.  Also early in their season, this could be an exciting year for this team.

Baseball

A 5-2 record for Baseball is good, but will need to improve for a return to the College World Series if they wish to reprise their role in the previous Year of the Cardinals.  Again, there is hope, here as their season is just getting started.

Golf

Laura Restrepo and Emily Haas are looking impressive in the Golf world, with Katie Petrino getting some attention as well.  Will there be enough for the whole team to go deep into The American Conference tournament and then the NCAA Regionals and Championship?  Stay turned, we'll find out in May.

The Men's Golf team doesn't appear to be racking up quite the accolades that the women are, but still look to be playing well in general.

Swimming and Diving

The men's and women's swimming and diving teams look like they are nearly unbeatable at the moment, though I don't know the world of swimming and diving well enough to know if we were just dramatically better than a merely mediocre conference, or if we really do have great things in store for the rest of the year.  We'll find out in less than a month at the NCAA championships that occur over two weekends in late March.

Tennis

The men's tennis team is en route to a good year with a 7-2 record, and the women are doing nearly
as well at 6-2.  Julia Fellerhoff and Rebecca Shine collected a number of accolades in early action as individual and pairs competitors, including a runner-up finish at the ITA Indoor Championships.  We're about halfway through the regular season for Tennis and we'll continue to follow the fortunes of the women's team here, of course.  Tennis season runs through April.

Rowing

Rowing has only had one actual competition so far, but made a good name for themselves with several runner-up finishes.  This is another very young program at UofL that is already starting to make waves...pardon the pun.  We'll be keeping an eye on outcomes as their mostly-spring season progresses through May.

Track and Field

That only leaves track and field for Louisville teams.  I must admit that I know little enough about track and field that I can't even really get a feel for how well they are doing as a team this year.  The indoor season is about to wrap up in mid-March, and the outdoor season will run late March through mid-June.

Overall Analysis

So what's your take on how all of the Cardinals sports teams are doing?  I think you have to say that by and large its been a good year for UofL Athletics.  Will we have another Year of the Cardinals?  Truth be told, I think its fairly unlikely, though there is certainly still room for an amazing string of accomplishments in the final tally.

Ultimately, I don't care.

There are still plenty of opportunities to get out and support the UofL student-athletes, and particularly with spring sports getting into the swing of things, doing so frequently involves some of the most wonderful weather in the Louisville area.  So, come on out to the newly-renovated Ulmer Stadium, and the Louisville Lacrosse Field and cheer on the Cards.

Jeff McAdams
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Monday, February 24, 2014

Monday Cardinal Couple -- A great day to be a Cardinal fan!


MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

It was a big weekend for Louisville Women’s athletics, and my how they responded. 
Softball went 4-1 at home this weekend to get back above .500.  Lacrosse won two on the road putting up big offensive numbers and the women’s basketball team defended home court and swept Rutgers on the season.

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A-Tayy gives us that beautiful smile
(Photo by Charlie Springer - UofLCardGame.com)
A career performance by Asia Taylor led the team to 73-58 win over the Scarlet Knights.  The win ties a school record of 17 home wins in a season and guarantees the Cardinals no less than second place in conference play in their sole season in The American. 

The Cardinal faithful came out to support the women today, topping out at 14,327, to celebrate the annual pink game and get their fix of this team, and seniors, as the season rapidly winds down.   

Robbie Bartlett got things started for the day by singing the National Anthem.  We were just talking about Robbie, and the lack of her Ballgame National Anthem apperances, on the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour yesterday.  It was nice to see a local favorite back out on the court getting us all ready for the opening tip.  Robbie sings the opening and closing music for our show each Saturday.

Julie Hermann was back also in town...seated behind the Rutgers' bench to see how her new university would do against her former school. Julie in a skirt...not a bad sight to see at all...

Bria attemps inside (Photo by Charlie Springer)
The Cardinals played a very good game against a young and very tough Rutgers team. This is an exciting and talented team.  Tyler Scaife, the freshman who lit us up in Piscataway, had another dominant performance for the Scarlet Knights, but it was not enough to tip the balance in their favor.  17 points Sunday.

Rutgers is also leaving The American at the season’s end, to join the Big 10.

With a poor shooting performance for several Cardinals, it is heartening to see a double digit win in a tournament like atmosphere.   Sara Hammond went 3-10, Bria Smith went 1-6 and Antonita Slaugher  went 0-5 behind the arc and the Cardinals were still able to win going away. 

 The Cardinals started a little slow offensively, with Rutgers taking an early lead. Hammond missed 3-4 early chippies under the basket before she stepped back and sank a three.   Slaughter, who had an off shooting night, was able to affect them defensively hustling on several key plays keeping the Cardinal ball alive. 

Breast cancer survivors help lead a cheer
While there were many contributions from varying players throughout the game to change and shift momentum, there was no bigger player today than Asia Taylor.  She flat out balled.  Taylor left nothing on the court, and in doing so, had a career performance of 25 points, 15 boards, 3 assists and 3 steals.   Taylor played like the 5th year senior that she is taking full advantage of her last year in a Cardinal uniform. 

The Cardinals have two games left.  Next Saturday in Cincinnati and the final game of the regular season back at the Yum Center against #1 ranked Connecticut.  Monday, March 3, against Connecticut, is your last time to see this team, and these seniors, in their final regular season game.   With hard work and a little luck, we may just get to see them return to the Yum for the regionals of the NCAA tournament.

Future prospective LadyBirds and Cheerleaders lead the crowd
March 3 will be a celebration of the seniors, Asia Taylor, Tia Gibbs, Antonita Slaughter and the always interesting Shoni Schimmel.  It is also Native American Appreciation day.  The lower bowl of the arena is sold out, but there are still seats to be had.  $5 is a bargain to see this game. Get your seats folks and get there early.  It is going to be an exciting finish to the season. 

Call (502) 852-7254 or e-mail johnathan@gocards.com to get your seats!


EDITOR'S NOTE:

NOT ENOUGH CAN BE SAID ABOUT THE PERFORMANCE OF A-TAYY TODAY. THE 'LOOK' WAS THERE TODAY. SHE GETS THIS LOOK (sometimes) DURING GAMES...LIKE A HAWK GETTING READY TO SWOOP DOWN ON AN UNSUSPECTING PREY...OR A SLEEK, SLIM PANTHER ABOUT TO RUN DOWN AND DISABLE A GAZELLE.

 A LOOK OF INTENSITY. OF CONFIDENCE. A LOOK OF CLARITY AND UNDERSTANDING. WE LOVE IT WHEN A-TAYY COMES OUT WITH 'THE LOOK'. YOU KNOW ALL IS GOING TO BE OK...

A LOOK THAT SAYS...WINNER.

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Softball finished a weekend of play against Northern Kentucky University winning 8-0.  The Softball Cards got out to a quick lead by scoring 4 in the first inning.  While that is all they would need to win for the day, the game officially ended in the bottom of the sixth due to the run rule.  (The run rule is in effect when a team leads by more than 8 runs after the 5th inning.) 

Freshman Tiarra Sanabria got her first official start on the mound and went two innings giving up one hit and striking out two.  Sanabria was relieved by Caralisa Connell, who fanned 4 in two innings, and Maryssa Becker closed out the game and got the win on the day. 

The softball team heads to the west coast next weekend to participate in the Mayfair Tournament in Fullerton, CA.   They will return home the weekend of March 7-9. 

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Lacrosse finished their Virginia road trip at William & Mary on Sunday and won in a dominant performance, with a final score of 18-5.

Nikki Boltja had a season-best 7 goals to lead the Cardinals.  The Cardinals had a 21 minute stretch in the game where they scored 14 unanswered goals.  This was the 4th best unanswered stretch in school history. 

Coach Kellie Young had this to say about her teams performance on Sunday:
 
"This was one of the best overall efforts of my college coaching days," head coach Kellie Young said. "End to end, every player gave their best effort and showed incredible attention to detail."

Sounds like a great win and great team play for Lacrosse.  Next up for the team is a return home for a match up on Saturday, March 1 against Denver.  With very few home gams on the schedule for the team this will be a rare opportunity to see a game.  

jenny obryan
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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday Cardinal Couple -- Time to shine



SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-WBB faces Rutgers today

-Softball sweeps in Day 2 of Cardinal Classic

-Lacrosse faces William & Mary today

-Swimming takes AAC Championships


Time to play.

The UofL WBB squad faces Rutgers tomorrow in the KFC YUM! Center at 3 p.m. in a showcase game of two of the hottest teams in the AAC (and the nation) tomorrow.

Louisville has lost just once in their last nineteen games and sits #3 in the nation with a 26-2 record. Rutgers is 16-3 since December and currently on a five game win streak. The Scarlet Knights are 20-5 and looking to close the gap on the Cards hold on second place in the AAC.

Oh, yeah...this one should be fun.

Louisville will look to put the hiatus on one of the best freshmen in the nation is Tyler Scaife. No problem, right? She's only 5'7".

Think again. She lit Louisville up for 25 back in Piscataway on Jan. 28th and is the reigning AAC Freshman of the Week.

She averaged 19 points in two Rutgers wins last week against Houston and UCF.

This Rutgers squad is not a one-horse stable, though. Kahleah Copper is shooting 56.5% from the floor this season, averaging 16.1 p.p.g. and will make you pay inside. Rachel Hollivay is ninth in the nation in blocked shots (81) and Syessence Davis 15th. in the nation in steals with 73. Betnijah Laney has 11 double doubles on the season, scores at a clip of 12.5 a contest and grabs 9.1 a night.


(OK...it's a little late for that but I like the pic...)
The Scarlet Knights are coming to town with their own 'unfinished business'...the trip to Louisville is their final away game of the year and hanging a loss on Louisville would assure them of a definite third place conference finish and a legit shot at tying the Cards for second place.

They will be running into a Louisville team, though, that beat them by nine in "The RAC" and one of the top-five players in the nation in Shoni. Another motivation factor for C.Vivian Stringer's squad.

Give Shoni 13-15,000 screaming fans and a Sunday matinee and she just might top the 24 points she put on them in Piscataway. She averages 17.6 per tilt.

Shutting down Shoni won't get an opponent out of the woods, though. Sara "The Hammer" Hammond pounds down 11.3 per tussle and has 6.4 rebounds. A-Tayy (10.9 ppg and 6.9 rebounds) is dangerous in the paint or with the jumper. If Nita Slaughter and Tia Gibbs are bombing threes successfully, "E" is on one of her point-per-minute rampages and Jude and Bria are slicing and dicing up defenses...well, you get the picture. There's more than one Card in this deck.

This one will be a classic college basketball matchup. You don't want to miss it. If you can't get there, it's a ESPNU game. Maybe one of the last times these two meet for a stretch in a regular season matchup, since Rutgers is off to the BIG 10 and the Cards to the ACC.

Show up. Get loud. Stay loud. Wear your pink because it is the annual Pink Game. Get there early and get one of the 2,000 Pink T-shirts being given out for a donation to Gilda's Club. Help your Cards get the 'W'. Help Louisville add to the 16-0 home record they have this season and increase on the 7-4 win/loss record UofL has against RU in the series.  

See ya there!

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CARDINAL SOFTBALL GOT BACK ON THE WINNING TRACK AT ULMER YESTERDAY WITH TWO WINS...BOMBING IUPUI 12-1 AND SCORING THREE RUNS IN THE BOTTOM OF THE SEVENTH TO BEAT CMU 3-2

THE CARDS RUN-RULED THE VISITORS FROM INDIANAPOLIS IN THE FIRST GAME...BATTING IN ONLY FOUR INNINGS AND AMASSING 16 HITS. A NINE-RUN THIRD INNING WAS THE 'BOOM'.

AS THE WAY IT ALMOST ALWAYS SEEMS THIS SEASON SO FAR IN NIGHTCAPS, LOUISVILLE'S BATS DISAPPEARED IN THE SECOND GAME...GOING SCORELESS IN SIX INNINGS.

THESE GAMES ARE SEVEN INNINGS USUALLY, THOUGH...AND UOFL MADE THE MOST OF THEIR FINAL AT-BAT...SCORING THREE RUNS WITH JUST ONE OUT.

In the bottom of the seventh, Hannah Kiyohara led off with an infield single and Brittany Sims reached on an error by Cox. Katie Keller followed and sent a hard ground ball to third where CMU's Danielle Marlink fielded and stepped on third for the first out of the inning. She sailed a throw past first base on a double play attempt which sent Keller to second. With runners on second and third and one out in the inning, Whitney Arion powered a two-run double to left field to tie the game. Jones followed with an RBI double to center field for the 3-2 win..

UOFL WILL FACE NKU TODAY IN FINAL DAY ACTION OF THE CARDINAL CLASSIC.  12:30 FOR THIS ONE. YOU SHOULD MAKE A CARDINAL DOUBLEHEADER OF IT TODAY BY HITTING SOFTBALL FIRST AND THEN HEADING TO THE YUM! 



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Lacrosse looks for their second win in Virginia today when they face off against William & Mary at 1 p.m. in Williamsburg, VA.

The Tribe is 0-1 this season, losing 11-8 to Duke last Sunday.

Louisville is 2-1...coming off a road win against ODU. In the Cards 15-12 triumph, Nikki Boltja had five goals and Faye Brust added four. Two late goals by Cortnee Daly helped the Cards maintain the win.

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Congratulations to the men and women's swimming squads, who wrapped up the AAC Tournament championships at the Ralph Wright yesterday. Many of the Cards have put up times in their events that will give them a chance to participate in NCAA qualifying events and we wish them the best of luck in the continuing post-season.

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In case you missed Saturday's broadcast of CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO, do not worry or fret. It is on the Soundcloud and you can give it a listen at the link at the bottom of the article.

Hear Jeff heap abuse upon Paulie, hear Shoni and Sara talk about 2K. Hear Jenny narrowly lose in the weekly quiz. The agony and ecstasy...the pain and pride. The total nonsense we babble about weekly.

Come join us...

LINK:

THE AIRWAVES ARE NOT SAFE. STAY OFF THE INTERNET !!

paulie
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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Saturday Cardinal Couple ---Softball splits on Friday...Lacrosse downs ODU



SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Softball splits in Day One of Cardinal CLASSIC

- Lacrosse wins @ ODU


Louisville Softball (5-6) split in action on the opening day of the Cardinal Classic at Ulmer Stadium Friday. The Cards run-ruled NKU in their first game 11-2 but fell to EKU 4-0 in the nightcap.

Louisville jumped on the Northern Kentucky squad early...scoring four runs in the first inning and steadily increased the lead...ending the game in the bottom of the fifth with a Maggie Ruckenbrod double driving in two runs to take a nine-run lead and end the game. 

A shame that they couldn't have transferred five of those abundance of  runs to the next game. A season high 16 hits for the Cards in the win.

As strong as the Cardinal bats were against the Norse, they virtually disappeared in the contest against Eastern Kentucky.  Colonels pitcher LeAnna Pittsenbarge tossed a one hitter at Louisville and EKU got two home runs after two outs in the top of the seventh inning to break wide open a scoreless contest. Brittany Duncan delivered the sole hit for Louisville...a double in the bottom of the fourth inning.

Caralisa Connell got the win in the first contest, Rachel Le Coq took the loss in the second game.

Louisville plays two again tomorrow...facing IUPUI at 3 p.m. and Central Michigan at 5:30 p.m.

Something we're unaccustomed to in regards to Louisville softball. Struggling early and being below .500. Surprising when one looks at the talent-laden roster and veteran pitching staff.

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Lacrosse improved to 2-1 on the season with a hard fought win at Old Dominion Friday evening. 'Kellie's heroes' downed the Monarchs 15-12...getting five goals from Nikki Boltja and four scores from Faye Brust.

After ODU took an early lead 2 1/2 minutes into the game, the Cards responded with four straight scores...three of them from Boltja. The Cards never relinquished that lead and went into the half ahead 8-7.

ODU scored just 50 seconds into the start of the final half to tie the contest...but once again, the Cards responded with four straight goals...two from Faye Brust...to grab a 12-8 lead with 22:11 left. The Cards still led 14-10 after Cortnee Daley scored with 12:57 remaining and Daley added Louisville's final goal with 5:11 left to make it 15-11 Cards.

Louisville had a commanding 35-18 shot advantage...in fact, they dominated all the offensive stats against the Dominion bunch in grabbing their first road win of the season.

Ashley Herbst had two saves in goal in fifty minutes of play...the 'other' Ashley (Peacock) had ten minutes between the pipes and allowed just one goal.

Lacrosse continues the Virginia road trip with a Sunday game in Williamsburg against William & Mary.

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CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO today should be a busy affair...with reports on basketball, softball, lacrosse and whatever other sports we can squeeze in. We've also got comments from Kellie Young on the lacrosse win against Detroit and WBB players Shoni Schimmel and Sara Hammond on the Wednesday win over Houston.

11 a.m. Listen in at www.crescenthillradio.com


paulie
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Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday Cardinal Couple -- Softball swings into action



FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

-Cards open play in Cardinal Classic today

The University of Louisville softball team will host the 2014 Cardinal Classic at Ulmer Stadium in its home-opening weekend Feb. 21-23. Admission is free.UofL will open tournament play against Northern Kentucky and Eastern Kentucky at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. respectively on Feb. 21. The Cards will face IUPUI at 3 p.m. and Central Michigan at 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 22 and wrap up play against Northern Kentucky on Feb. 23 at 12:30 p.m. The Cards will be looking to rebound (OK, maybe the wrong term for softball) from a less-than-stellar weekend in Jacksonville. Louisville defeated the host to open play in the tournament and then dropped three straight games...two to Notre Dame and one to Ohio State. Pitching has been a problem in some of the contests for Louisville (4-5). Here's hoping the creme puffs and pastries that line up in the next three days for the Cards will solve that woe.  2014 Cardinal Classic Schedule
Friday, February 21
10:00 a.m. Central Michigan vs. Northern Kentucky
12:30 p.m. Central Michigan vs. Eastern Kentucky
3:00 p.m. Louisville vs. Northern Kentucky
5:30 p.m. Louisville vs. Eastern Kentucky
Saturday, February 22
10:00 a.m. Central Michigan vs. Eastern Kentucky
12:30 p.m. Northern Kentucky vs. IUPUI
3:00 p.m. Louisville vs. IUPUI
5:30 p.m. Louisville vs. Central Michigan
Sunday, February 23
10:00 a.m. IUPUI vs. Central Michigan
12:30 p.m. Louisville vs. Northern Kentucky
3:00 p.m. Eastern Kentucky vs. Northern Kentucky
5:30 p.m. Eastern Kentucky vs. IUPUI
 
When the Cardinals take the field for Friday's home opener, they will be competing in a newly-renovated Ulmer Stadium. While the significant components have been completed, crews still are putting the finishing touches on the venue. The entrance and walkways will be marked, and the new restrooms are now located on the south side of the concession stand.
 The Ulmer Stadium Expansion
In July 2013, the University of Louisville began a $3.5 million expansion project on the stadium which is scheduled to be completed by opening day of the 2014 season. The expansion will feature an upper deck terrace with elevator access and additional seating to accommodate up to 1,000 people within the stadium, increasing the facility's capacity to approximately 2,500. The remodeling will extend to the plaza which will serve as a welcome area for fans at the main entrance. Additionally, the public restrooms will be restructured and located south of the concession area. The upgrade will include a new team locker room and clubhouse with team meeting rooms and offices which will be located on the south side of the stadium. Restrooms will be also added to the home and visitor dugouts. A two-foot wall extending across the backstop will complete the field area improvements. Also part of the expansion is a newly constructed press box which will feature separate booths for home and visiting radio and television as well as an area for media and game operations. The roof of the press box will be covered and provide a camera deck for televised games.

We are grateful for the press box expansion. Watching games from basically the inside of a "tractor-trailer" was tough at times. Let's hope they also found a way to keep the sports information students from hogging all the good seats and allow the working media a clear view for the field...

We'll have a recap of the games in the Saturday edition of CARDINAL COUPLE and we'll discuss the Friday action on our Saturday Radio Show.

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One of the Cardinals you'll see bombing pedestrians and vehicles on Brandeis Street is Katie Keller.

She was just nominated for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award in college softball. CLASS is an acronym for CELEBRATING LOYALTY and ACHIEVEMENT for STAYING in SCHOOL. The honor is a nice one for Keller, even if a bit baffling...since there is no big dollar lure in Softball Professional sports to draw Keller away from the Cards.

The nominees (30 of them) gain eligibility by becoming seniors and displaying qualitites in the following categories...community, classroom, character and competition.

The candidate list will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the season.

paulie
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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Thursday Cardinal Couple -- Cards find Houston no problem 81-62



THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

- Shoni's 2000th career point highlight of 82-63 win


(Photo by Charlie Springer - UofLCardGame.com)
In what has become a predictable trend, the University of Louisville basketball team struggled with the opponent early in Wednesday night's game, made a late first half run to create some distance and embellished upon that with a run in the second half before allowing the opponent to cut into the lead over the final four minutes.

Houston tonight...but it could have been Temple, SMU, Memphis or several others in the AAC. Houston had a problem tonight and it came in the version of Sara, Shoni and "E". ...in addition to their own cold shooting.

Shoni Schimmel scored the 2000th point of her illustrious career with 18:11 remaining in the second half.

The affable and engaging Howie Lindsey
I set the "over/under" at 18 minutes on when she would reach the total...I took the "under" and LSR/CSR's Howie Lindsey picked the "over" and won the bet. I'm shaving my beard off on St. Patrick's Day. If I had won, Howie was going to challenge Emmonnie Henderson to a 100 yd. dash...

Louisville did lead early...a Sara layup had the Cards up 7-3 with three minutes gone. It stretched out to 13-3 after Sara hit a "plus one" at the 14:33 mark. Houston wasn't going to surrender without a battle, though and used a 12-4 run to make it 17-15 halfway through the half.

The Coogs were still in hot pursuit and had a chance to tie it at 21-21 but Yasmeen Thompson clanged both free throw attempts with 8:05 on the clock. Louisville took off from there...outscoring UH 17-8 the rest of the half. Nita Slaughter contributed five of the points and two Sara jumpers had Louisville leading 38-27 after twenty minutes.

Sara led the Cards with 12 first half points and Shoni added 10. The Cards were a perfect 5-5 from the line and were winning the second chance stat 12-1. Despite 39% shooting and patches of tough to watch three-point shooting (3-13), the Cards looked in control.

And, control was the mission statement of the second half. Louisville steadily added to the lead...a Sara layup gave the Cards a 47-31 advantage four minutes into action. The lead stayed around that mark until UofL pieced together a 11-0 run over a two-minute stretch.

With the score 65-50...beginning at the 6:38 mark on a "E" free throw... an A-Tayy free throw with 4:18 to go made it 76-50 UofL. It was the Cards largest lead of the night. Houston did manage to outscore Louisville 12-5 the rest of the way...Walz using a myriad of combinations on the court...including four minutes for Starr Breedlove.

Sara led Louisville with 17 points, Shoni ended up with 15 and Emmonnie completed the double-figure Cards with 12.

A workable win for Louisville (26-2, 14-1) against the cellar dweller of the conference. This one never in any danger...Shoni the only Card with more than 30 minutes. Walz used every combination available except me in the paint, Worldwide firing threes and Jenny at point.

Houston got a large performance from 6'1" soph. forward Marche' Amerson who led all scorers with 23 points. The Coogs fall to 5-21 and 1-14 in the AAC.

Shoni admitted that she wasn't for sure how many points she needed to reach 2K last night and gave credit to her teammates over the past four years who helped her achieve the goal. Perhaps the most touching post-game comment came from Sara...who said that someday when she becomes a mom and grandmom, she'll be able to tell her kids and their kids that she played with Shoni Schimmel.

Coach Walz's post game comments were mostly directed to her achievement...but declined on ranking her a position in the top five or ten players that he has ever coached....stating that he doesn't rank players in categories like that.

Walz did mention that the team had a lot to work on and he was concerned that they seemed to be making a lot of the same mistakes. Mistakes he and the coaches have worked to correct. He related that he told them they were running out days and games to get better and left it up to them to decide if they were going to come together and achieve what last year's squad achieved.

Coach also commented that a performance like last night's would translate into a loss against Rugters.

That is who is on tap next. The Scarlet Knights come to town Sunday for a pivotal game in determining the AAC standings. Rutgers is on a five game win streak and will be looking for some revenge when they enter the YUM.

Let's hope it's not on the menu...

paulie
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