2nd half slump sinks Cards in South Bend
|Brianna Turner hosted a block party Mon. night|
In a game full of highs and lows, Turner's seven blocked shots and a second half 16-0 Notre Dame run were high points for the Irish in dismantling UofL 68-52 in the Purcell Pavilion Monday night before 8911 fans and a nationwide audience on ESPN 2.
The Cards actually got off to an encouraging start and were scoring inside...leading 11-7 six minutes into the game. Balanced scoring where all the starters but Moore had put points on the board.
Shawnta' Dyer gave Louisville their biggest lead of the half on a 'plus 1' that made it 14-9 with 12:34 on the clock...but ND rolled off an 8-0 run to go up by three on a coast-to-coast Madison Cable layup.
|Muffet waves to Worldwide Jeff|
A Dyer hook shot set the halftime score at 31-28 UND. Jewel Loyd had nine points for the home team and Sara Hammond had eight for the Cards. Mariya Moore hadn't made a basket yet and Loyd & her teammates defense held her to two free throws.
Moore broke away from the pursuit briefly in the second half and produced the Cards first nine points.
|Dyer gets this one off in the paint, She was 4-6 last night|
Unfortunately, the script changed again and Moore would not score again.
The next five minutes turned into a Irish riverdance over the Cards...Jewel Loyd, Taya Reimer and Turner frolicking past the step-slow, shot-slightly-off Cards to go up 51-37 with 11:15 left in the game. The stretch included Jeff Walz getting a technical for protesting a Turner block that looked like a foul.
Sara Hammond's three would finally put the Notre Dame run to an end...but the damage had been done.
|"Sorry, Cards...I'm on my way to 20. It's what the best guard|
in the ACC does.
Sadly, UofL would get no closer than that five-point deficit the rest of the way.
Moore picked up her fourth and fifth fouls within 30 seconds of each other and went to the bench with Louisville trailing 59-48 at the 3:45 mark. The Irish breezed in on a 9-4 run the rest of the way to take a 68-52 win.
|Moore experiences Cable difficulties here.|
Louisville allowed the Irish 23-47 shooting for 48.9%. Loyd went for 20, Taya Reimer was 8-8 and 16 points and Turner had 11 points, nine boards and seven swats.
The 16-point loss looks rough on paper...but Louisville was still within striking distance until Moore went to the bench. It reinforces the importance she (and Myisha Hines-Allen) have had on this team as freshman.
The loss also showed us that Louisville simply can't afford to
fall asleep at the wheel for significant stretches in game. When you consider that Moore was the only Cardinal to score for the first 9:40 of the final half one has to wonder what was going on with the other four Cardinals accompanying her out there on the court.
Last night was a lesson on what the Cards need to do to get to that next level Walz wants them to be at. A veteran team mixed with youth withstands two runs on their home court and delivers a second-half knockout punch. It looked like (to this watcher) the Cards resigned themselves to a loss after Moore sat down and no one stood up to carry on the fight. Someone should have been there to cut into the 11 point Irish lead. Instead, it ballooned to 16.
Yes, the Cards were getting beaten before Moore fouled out...but great teams step up in adverse situations.
The scenario is one that Louisville is well-familiar with...they've used it to bury opponents all season long. On Monday night, the roles were reversed.
Help is on the way next year. Last night, Louisville had no punch left after Moore went to the corner.
Louisville now sits alone in third place of the ACC...two back of Notre Dame and one behind FSU. The Cards will look to get back on track when Boston College visits Thursday.
On a night where the Irish front line starters went 12-13 from the floor and sent eight Cardinal inside attempts astray...the best defensive team in the ACC got taught a few lessons in blockage by a sophomore and freshmen. Notre Dame ruled the paint, which is usually Cardinal territory. It was the Cards first double digit loss of the season.
Worldwide Jeff McAdams was in attendance for this one and he'll either podcast his experiences in South Bend later this week or save them for the Saturday radio show.