DURR'S 32, FIVE IN DOUBLE FIGURES PUT AWAY UK
|Look, ma! They spelled it right in Lexington !!
#25 was Durrific. What more can you say about the Douglasville, GA junior in the contest? 32 points, 6-11 from trifecta range and just one foul and one turnover in 36 excellent minutes of court time. She's Asia Durr, the best basketball player in D1 women's college hoops. In keeping with the tradition we've come to expect of her, she passed the accolades on to her teammates:
"My teammates find me on the court, Coach Walz calls great plays and if I don't have the shot there -- I know I have my teammates to count on. They always help me get hyped. They get me going."
|Daryl Foust, Al Greener and a guy I'm pretty sure isn't
Santa Claus with me in end zone media row.
It was evident that UK came out wanting to run every chance they got but after an early success by Alyssa Rice on a jail-break that got her in front of the Cards' transition defense for a bucket...UK would score no more fast break points. The heralded guard combo of Maci Morris and Taylor Murray was also pretty much kept at bay with just 24 of UK's points and a combined 9-21 shooting.
Jeff Walz commented on them:
"They are guards that have the ability to take over a game. We knew they loved to drive to the right. Unfortunately, for the first few minutes we allowed them to do that and they scored. We made some adjustments. Forced them to their left. Defensively, we did a lot of good things."
|Coaches Walz and Mitchell exchange views pre-game
It was over at the half.
Yes, they continued the game and Louisville did outscore the Cats 40-38 in the final twenty. Going into the locker room after the first twenty, UK walked off the court like a defeated team. The scoreboard read 47-25. A second quarter where Louisville dominated 24-9 and where starters Myisha Hines-Allen and Jazmine Jones sat the entire 10 minutes because of two fouls each.
Their court absence wasn't a factor. Durr remained hot, starters Sam Fuehring and Arica Carter picked up the slack. Dana Evans came off the bench to contribute valuable minutes.
If there are a better "nine" in the nation than these contributing Cardinals, beside possibly UConn, point them out to me.
|Sam drawing a charge early was big for
Walz had to be happy with only 11 turnovers. No more than two by any player. Once again, control the ball, control the game. One thing he couldn't talk about, but was a discussion of sorts on media row, was the discrepancy in foul-calling.
The Cards were whistled for 24 infractions. UK 17. Four Cardinals played with four each at the end and two others had three. Another rough outing for the sometimes brilliant, sometimes head-scratch causing Bionca Dunham. Four fouls in three minutes. A couple that could have gone either way. The same thing happened to Jazz Jones. Whistled for four and two of them were "phantom" calls. Louisville normally gets a pretty evenly-called game when big, bald Luis Gonzales has a whistle. Didn't happen Sunday. Mark Zentz was his usual below-average in court officiating and Michael McConnell (Mitch's son, maybe?) might as well have grabbed a seat and enjoyed some popcorn instead of running around and making bad calls and missing infractions. I know, we're positive here at Cardinal Couple, but these guys were less-than-mediocre at best.
|The Cards owned the paint Sunday.
|When she shoots, good things usually follow
This UofL team is something special. I stand humbled in their effort and presence.
The usually flamboyant UK head coach Mitchell, after some early antics, spent long stretches of Sunday's game sitting on the bench with a look of askance, bewilderment and resignation on his face. He has a squad that needs to embrace the concepts of defense and continuity. That's his job...and UK might be able to respond to these needs...but, on Sunday, little of that was present. With classes not starting back up until early January, one would figure he'll be searching for that particular rainbow.
THE FRED REPORT
|It was a "beautiful day in the
neighborhood" for UofL WBB Sunday.
Fred Rogers. In a red sweater.
R- Rebounds - Louisville controlled the boards 36-25. They got over half of those from Myisha and Sam. They out-rebounded their Wildcat counterparts Makenzie Cann and Alyssa Rice 19-4. That'll get you a capital "R" every time.
E - Effort/Execution - The Cards won the hustle stats convincingly. They got the ball to their scorers. Save for the the disappointing afternoons for Jones and Dunham, they were a crisp and finely-tuned machine. 20-8 second chance points. Game-changer. No problem in extending a capital "E" here.
D- Defense - Louisville had been holding foes to 55 points a game. Despite Kentucky managing 63, the Cards forced 18 turnovers, allowed just 44.9% from the floor (which was 39% before the fourth quarter) and dominated the paint on both end of the court. We'll give out a capital "D" here. Only Ohio State has managed over 70 points against UofL.
THE FRED REPORT: _-R-E-D
Mission accomplished. The Cards move on to explore the wild, blue yonder with a trip to the Air Force Academy on Wednesday. A chance to be the "top guns" once again. Another chance to "fly into the danger zone." and emerge unscathed.
FOLLOW KENNY'S LEAD
Somewhere, "Goose" is probably smiling...
|Goose and Maverick understand UofLs
"need for speed"
In Louisville, grins are a' plenty.
UK made some interesting choices. The Cats decided to see if Arica Carter could beat them. Mission Accomplished with 11 points and three threes. They chose to shut down Durr's three attempts and driving to the basket. That worked out well, right?
The question I had going in was whether Durr and Hines-Allen continue their All-American performances? Mission Accomplished. Fall out, troops, and re-assemble in Colorado. The Empire still stands unblemished...the record perfect.
The Battle of the Bluegrass goes to the Cards. Convincingly. And, an old curse...the spell of the "winless Cards in Memorial" is broken and put to rest.
THEY SAID IT:
MATTHEW MITCHELL POST GAME
MYISHA, ASIA and WALZ POST GAME