Sunday, January 8, 2017
Louisville women's basketball -- Cards must avoid "Pitt" fall today -- SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE
PANTHERS HOPE TO PULL UPSET AGAINST CARDS TODAY
The Pittsburgh Panthers (10-5, 1-1) visit the KFC YUM! Center today at 4 p.m.
hoping to pull off their biggest win of the 2016-17 season against the Louisville
Cardinals women's basketball squad in what will be the first ACC road game of
the year for Susie McConnell-Serio's squad.
Pitt got their first conference win Thursday when they downed visiting Boston
College 56-43. The Panthers got a big lift off the bench from sophomore
Kalista Walters' 19 points to even their ACC record after opening the conference slate in The Peterson Event Center with a 82-56 loss to Miami.
Balanced scoring and "sharing the load" seems to be a good description for
the Pennsylvania school this season. Although Brenna Wise leads the Panthers with 14.1 ppg this season...she and four other players have achieved double- doubles so far in 15 games. Wise has four and Walters, Brandi Harvey-Carr, Kauai Bradley and Jasmine Whitney have one each. Wise, a sophomore, was selected to the ACC All-Freshman squad last year and the 6'0" forward is one of four players on the roster from Pittsburgh...including the coach's daughter Madison Serio. One name missing from the Pitt roster is 6'11" "Bubbles" Anderson who retired from the team because of on-going knee problems.
Fouling Pitt may not be something the Cards want to do with any frequency.
They lead the the ACC with a 76% free throw accuracy. Five Panthers shoot
80% or better from the charity stripe and they average 11 makes a game. The Panthers are still one of the younger teams in the ACC with 2 grad students, no seniors, two juniors, six sophomores and two freshmen.
Pitt makes their third road trip of the season today...losing to cross-state rival Penn St. 91-62 in Happy Valley and getting two wins in the Patrick Harrington Tournament in Niceville, FL. I bet that's a nice place...Niceville.
The tournament honors the former Northwest Florida State College head women's basketball coach Patrick Harrington....who died after an automobile accident in 2014.
There is no correlation that I could find to Pat Harrington, the actor who played "Schneider" on the long-running sitcom "One Day at a Time" .
The Panthers are 0-4 in lifetime visits to the YUM! Center and 2-12 overall against Louisville. The Cards have won the last eight meetings. Last year UofL beat Pitt 84-61 in Pittsburgh and 65-36 in Louisville. Myisha Hines-Allen ("Myzilla") seems to enjoy playing them...she had a previous career high 29 points in the first meeting and 25 in the second contest in 2015-16.
Pittsburgh's other losses this season, beside Penn St. and Miami, have come to Purdue 67-61, Charlotte 70-63 and cross-town foe Duquesne 63-54.
If the Cards can put together a consistent effort today and get off to a good start, they shouldn't have a great deal of difficulty in getting the win...but if the "investment-in-themselves" philosophy that Coach Walz is trying to get across to the squad isn't catching on...it could be a challenging afternoon
for Louisville. Miami and Penn State put it to the Panthers pretty well earlier this season and the 8/9 Cards are certainly just as good, if not better, than those two schools.
Here's hoping that the return to the friendly confines of Denny Crum Court restores the Cards marksmanship. Louisville shot 36.8% at Duke and 38.2% in Virginia. Let's also hope the the "bakery" is closed on Sunday and turnovers aren't being handed out to the visitors from the Keystone state today....the Cards have had 33 in the last two outings. I think the Cards will win, and I hope they do it convincingly.
AROUND THE CONFERENCE
Six other ACC games take place today.
- Virginia Tech travels to Clemson and the Hokies should cage the Tigers in that one.
- Boston College visits "Q" and the 'Cuse in the spacious Carrier Dome and "Pistol Pete's" Orange shouldn't have much trouble with the Eagles.
- NC State looks to get back on the winning track at Wake Forest. The Wolf Pack should devour the Demon Deacons.
- Virginia heads south to Chapel Hill and faces a UNC squad needing a conference "W". I'll take those Tar Heels to run over the Cavs.
- A great match-up in Tallahassee with visiting Duke and the 'Noles. I'll go with Chief Osceola's squaws here over the devils with the blue dresses on.
- Miami hosts Notre Dame in another top 25 showdown...I expect a close one but will predict Irish eyes will be smiling at the end of this tussle.
We'll see if I can match Thursday's 7-0 selection success. So far, in conference play...I'm 13-4, which is 76.4% and gets me a capital "F" in Fred's world.
PITINO'S BUNCH PULLS ONE OUT
On the men's side yesterday, Louisville had all cylinders clicking in the first half down in Atlanta against the Ramblin' Wreck and flew out to a 27-18 halftime edge. The Cards bumped that up to 41-26 in the final half before Georgia Tech decided they might-as-well stay inside where it was warm and play a little basketball.
A 12-0 Tech run cut the Cards lead to 41-38...but 3's from Jaylen Johnson and Donovan Mitchell restored UofL's lead to 49-42 and the Cards got out of the Peach State (we hope, I hear the weather was nasty by Southern standards down there) with their first ACC win 65-50.
A tip of the cap to Mitchell, who totaled 20 for the 'Ville.
Also, hopes that all will be OK with Deng Adel, who took a powerful elbow to the head in a rebound battle with Ga. Tech's Ben Lammers, hit the floor and was motionless for awhile before being assisted off the court and not returning. Concussions and Cardinals are an undesired combo this year for the men's team...Deng is the third player to suffer one this season for the guys.
A scary moment, indeed, for the likable Cardinal with the always-present smile...and the fans watching.
THE CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR
If you missed Saturday's broadcast of THE CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR...there's no need to take to the streets and lament. We have the re-broadcast for you at the link below.
Paulie, Worldwide and Case rambled about all sorts of stuff...including basketball, swimming, and we featured audio from Coach Walz and Virginia WBB head coach Joanne Boyle and a couple of her players.
Our planned curling match didn't happen...they wouldn't let us ice down the sidewalk on Frankfort Ave. in front of the studio but we did get into a discussion about the sport. It's tougher than it looks.
It's live, unrehearsed air time...(and it shows).
LINK: THE CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO HOUR 01/07/16
see ya Sunday!