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Sunday, January 10, 2016

Basketball Put Up Their Dukes -- Monday Cardinal Couple

Duke Bedeviled by Defense


When the Blue Devils came to town, both sets of fans were worried about which teams were really going to show up.

Despite having run off an eight game winning streak, the early season losses still loom large in the rear-view mirror of this intrepid Cardinal team.

The lackadaisical play of the Kentucky game, the lack of team play in the Cal and WKU games, and the carelessness of the Purdue and Dayton games are in the past, but not completely forgotten.  The youth of this Louisville team continues to worry us, but we are starting to have faith that they are getting it all together and figuring out how top play as a team and capitalize on FRED, at least for the most part.

Ref  Dee Kanter waits for more confetti to fall
Duke, on the other hand, was coming off of a big dominant win at Wake Forest, but before that suffered a humiliating loss at Syracuse.  Which Duke team would show up, the team that wailed on Wake? Or the team that was slammed at Syracuse?

It turns out that the more recent conference-level Cards showed up, while Duke...well, I don't have as much of a feel for what their level of play has been like, but I suspect they didn't return to their Syracuse level of play. I can't imagine the play we saw was the level of play for Duke against Wake Forest. Post-game Joanne P. McCauley pointed to the turnovers as the reason for the demise both here and Syracuse. 

The Cards claim this one 65-48.

UofL lead in the first three quarters and tied in the fourth when Coach Walz started to call for deflating the ball despite Duke still playing aggressively -- even going for a steal and lay-up with five seconds left in the game and a 19 point deficit. Walz admitted in the post-game presser that he shouldn't have taken the foot off the gas and should have given his reserves a chance to compete. 

The Big Three and More


Do we have a reformulation of "The Big Three"?  Probably not, but Briahanna Jackson didn't have a very good game, with Asia Durr stepping up to fill the void quite admirably with 15 points.  The M&Ms had a fine showing, with Myisha Hines-Allen dropping 14 points while Mariya Moore put 15 up on the scoreboard.

The whole team played unselfishly, led by Hines-Allen dishing up five assists and Moore with four.  Arica Carter is still playing quite well, while she only got four points, but she did offer up three assists, and pilfered the Dukies four times while running the offense most of the game.  Three steals are attributed to Hines-Allen, and Cortnee Walton...with several of Walton's seeming to surprise her ("Oh hey, look, here's a ball.")  Walton also had her usual good game cleaning off the backboards 12 times.  Other significant contributions came from Erin DeGrate who played some quality time when Hines-Allen found herself in some foul trouble, and from Taja Cole who ran the offense for the 14 minutes that Carter didn't.

The FRED Report


75% is good for a solid capital "F" on Free Throws.  None were attempted in the first quarter, they drained both attempts in the 2nd quarter, but things got a little dicey in the 3rd with only 67%, and the only attempt in the 4th quarter was good.

The Cards out-rebounded their significantly taller conference-mates 42-36, that earns a capital "R", particularly with 21 offensive rebounds compared to Duke's 13 giving an immediate extra eight possessions.

With 38 points in the paint, (Duke had 28) they get a nice capital "E" as well.  Particularly given the significant height advantage for Duke, UofL did a fine job of driving and getting lay-ups, with a number of them coming from put-backs from those rebounds.

Team awaits the huge flag to be brought to mid-court
This "D" is gilt, framed, underlined and comes with its own exclamation mark.  Duke had 22 turnovers with 14 of them being stolen by the Cards.  This was probably the best defense this team has played all season.

Road Trip


The Cards head out on the road for the next couple of weeks with a contest on Thursday at Virginia, then Sunday at NC State.  An eight day break greets the Cards before they take a trip up north to Syracuse.  They return to the friendly confines of the KFC Yum! Center on the 28th competing with Clemson.

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Saturday radio show link on the Soundcloud: 

https://soundcloud.com/chradio/cardinal-couple-010916

JMcA

19 comments:

  1. Virginia will be shorthanded against us in next game. Faith Randolph is out 6 weeks with an injury.

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  2. Nice summary. What a great win! Especially happy for Courtnee Walton. I attended their game against Grand Canyon last season in Phoenix which was the last contest she played in before redshirting. Walz wanted to give her a chance to perform in front of her home town crowd but she was having trouble just getting up and down the court. At the time I doubted she had much more basketball left in that body. Glad she proved me wrong.

    It's a testament to the ULWBB trainers and her discipline & hard work. She has become the team elder statesman, a real leader and is putting up Rodmanesque rebounding numbers. Oh yeah...she can hit that little free throw line jumper now too which is helping keep defenses honest inside. Can't ask for much more than that.

    Best of luck to these kids as they go on the road.

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    Replies
    1. I agree 100% about Walton. She is really contributing every game now. And you can tell by the look on her face that she is really enjoying being out there.

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    2. It is great to see Walton playing well and contributing meaningfully. Like you, Burn, I wasn't sure how well she would come back.

      I (with my parents) had the opportunity to speak with her quite a bit at last year's basketball banquet (not this season's) and there is nothing to not like about this young woman. I doubt she will do much beyond college in basketball, but whatever she does do, she will do it well and be successful at it, of that I have no doubt.

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    3. She sure seems like a good kid. With her ULWBB chops, BA in Communications and Masters in Sports Administration I could see her working in WBB post graduation if she wants to do it. I was impressed with how she handled herself in the Duke presser. Seems like a junior LaChina Robinson waiting to happen.

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  3. 22 Duke turnovers and 27 points off them. Those are the two stats that define this one to me. You could see the frustration in the Duke post players eyes...not being able to get easy looks or clean passes inside. Walz knew how to shut down Salvadores and the Cards did. Greenwell is going to be Greenwell and get her numbers most of the time...but it is important to note that she had only three at the half when the Cards built their lead.

    Paulie

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    Replies
    1. I saw that too Paulie. Stevens only got a couple of easy inside scores and the Cards were doing a good job of tying her up inside when the ball got to her. I was sitting up behind you in the end zone and she was obviously frustrated. She screamed something to one of the guards in the fourth quarter but I couldn't hear what it was she said. Did you?

      Curtis Franklin

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    2. Mazeltov? I didn't see it...but it was probably something akin to getting her the ball more often.

      Paulie

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    3. Great job on Greenwell. Half her points came in last 2 1/2 minutes when game was long decided.

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  4. Early season losses never bothered me. We were just young and lots of new faces playing together for the first time. But we have lots of talent and it appears they are buying into what coach Walz is selling, and I NEVER doubted him. More than anything, they played excellent scouting report defense, and Walz is a master at coming up with defensive strategies to limit other teams best threats. And, Degrate was certainly a pleasant surprise! Now, if we could just get a little more from Feuhring. And I have been a fan of Courtnee's since her freshman year, she is to me the one constant out there. Of course she rebounds, but she also handles the ball a lot in the flow of the offense, very few turnovers, and even her free throw shooting has improved. Hats off for a huge win!

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  5. the other tom1/11/2016 12:16 PM

    what did Jackson do to get benched? she was not a happy camper

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    Replies
    1. Jackson is so good defensively even w/ huge mismatches. She caused a travel on Stevens on a one on one fast break and half her size. She shot 1-6 from the floor. That might of been the reason.

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  6. Back in AP Top 25 at #23 this week. The three ranked clubs we beat are all ranked higher.

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    Replies
    1. Good we're earning ranking now. Will be valued and appreciated more by players rather than just given to us.

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    2. There you go. Lesson learned for the freshman class hopefully.

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  7. I wanted the reserves to have a chance to just put it up in the closing minutes to see them compete and build confidence. I'm glad Walz recognized the same thing in is post game comments.

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  8. Greenwell should be pretty sorry by now that she did not come to Louisville, or at a minimum ugh! KY.

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    Replies
    1. God willing, she'll graduate with a degree from Duke University. I'd say she's probably not regretting her decision too tough

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  9. Perhaps she will be one of those who with a degree and a 5th year of eligibity remainjng after injury redshirt year that she jumps some where else.

    ReplyDelete

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