Monday, February 12, 2018
Louisville women's basketball, Lacrosse, Softball -- MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE
LAX WINS HOME OPENER 16-8
The Louisville Lacrosse team put together a 7-0 run in the second half to shake off Marquette and win their home opener 16-8 Sunday afternoon at the Louisville Lacrosse Stadium. During that run, junior Tessa Chad scored three of her game high five goals to help lead the Cards from a 9-7 lead to a 16-7 advantage. The Cards are now 2-0 on the season and in the Scott Teeter era.
Louisville took control of the contest early...jumping out to a 6-1 lead in the first seventeen minutes of the action. Chad got the Cards first score and after two net-finders
each from Jillian Balog and Caroline Blalock, plus a score from Julia Wood, it looked like the Cards would have little trouble from the Wisconsin visitors. Marquette was not quite ready to give up the battle, though, and outscored Louisville 4-2 to close out the first half...trailing the Cards 8-5 at the intermission.
What did Coach Teeter say at the half to his squad?
'We talked more or less about staying on the same page. In the first half I though we had one or two individuals that were getting away from our system and that's where the breakdown was. In the second half it looked like we had seven girls on offense all on the same page and all eight defensively. We made a lot of play through transition...we scored some fast break goals . That was a goal at half-time, too. To push the ball."
After Wood got the first goal of the final half, Marquette scored twice before Louisville went on their run. The Cards won the second half battle 8-3 and forced Marquette into 22 turnovers, while committing just 14 . Marquette added a meaningless score with 19 seconds remaining to make the final 16-8. Marquette's Grace Gabriel tallied five scores for the visitors, who had Ky. Country Day's Claire Hamilton on their roster.
Besides Chad's five scores, freshman Caroline Blalock had four, Balog and Wood (returnees from last year's team) netted three each and senior defender Emily Howell (who we interviewed at the Spring Sports Media Day) added one.
An encouraging start for a team that has only had Teeter as the head coach since November 20th and has had only about a month to recruit players for this year's team, install a system and practice with the squad. He has a team that is a mix of freshmen (11), transfers-in (6) and just eight returnees. They have a way to go, Teeter was clear about that, but the team unity and closeness is strong and viable and that, by itself, is a welcome and refreshing aspect to the turf that lies in the shadow of Little YUM! practice facility and Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. The players believe in him and themselves. That's huge and refreshing.
Cardinal fans...adopt these brave women and this new coach as one of your spring sports to watch and support. Lacrosse and basketball have a lot of similarities...with fast-breaks, passing, shot-blocking and strategy. It's fast and exciting. They've even been known to throw peanuts to the fans and bring in Al Greener's pep band. Check it out. We think you'll be back for more. Hear the post-game analysis below in the video:
POSTGAME WITH COACH TEETER, TESSA CHAD AND CAROLINE BLALOCK
The LAXGIRLS return to action Saturday at 1 p.m. when they host Denver.
(Thanks to Jared Anderson for the photo sand filming of post game!)
SOFTBALL SLUG-FEST RESULTS IN 9-7 LOUISVILLE WIN
Louisville Softball closed out their stay in Orlando with a doozy, breaking a 7-7 tie in the top of the seventh inning to defeat Illinois 9-7 yesterday morning.
The start time, presumably scheduled to meet travel arrangements, seemed to agree with both team, in terms of hitting prowess. The Cards put up three runs to start the game...a Nicole Pufahl triple driving in Blaire Bass and Jenna Jordan being the major blow in the Cards' first at-bat...but Illinois countered with two runs in the bottom of the inning. After the slugging start, staring pitcher Megan Hensley settled down and held the Illini scoreless until the bottom of the fifth...while the Cards added four more runs to build a convincing five-run, 7-2 edge.
Just when it looked like the Cards were in control, Illinois struck back with two runs in the fifth and three runs in the bottom of the sixth against Hensley and reliever Danielle Watson to tie the contest going in to the top of the seventh. Errors are almost expected this early in the season and a couple from fro Cards helped the Illini climb back into the contest.
It was the Cards turn for offensive fireworks in what proved to be their last time at bat and they got them when Hensley opened the inning with a single. The "New Pride of New Egypt, New Jersey" -- Jamie Soles -- legged out a sacrifice bunt and Celene "Play that Funky music" Funke beat out an infield grounder to fill the bags with Cards with no outs. A fielding error on a Caitlin Ferguson grounder scored one and Kyra Snyder's clutch single made it 9-7.
That two run lead held in the bottom of the seventh...Illinois did get a runner on-base but were unable to get her home.
Snyder went 4-5 in the 24-hit game, with three RBI's and a double. Pufahl was 2-3 with a triple and two runs batted in.
Louisville finishes the tournament with a 4-1 record and returns to action Friday, February 16th in the the ACC/BIG 10 Challenge with a 2:30 game vs Northwestern in Raleigh, NC.
Louisville women's basketball takes on UConn tonight in the much-awaited Monday Night matchup between #1 and #4 in the nation. ESPN 2 will televise the 7 p.m. start.
We discussed on radio Saturday about what the Cards had to do to beat UConn and (besides Worldwide's steal from Jeff Walz's reply... 'score more points'... snarky comment), we came to the general conclusion that the Cards needed to go out and play the style and brand of Louisville basketball that got them to 25-1 and see how it matches up against the Huskies.
Play like Louisville.
Some things we'd like to see:
Asia Durr efficiency and success from the arc will be a key.. Hines-Allen board crashing and inside production another huge factor. The steady play of guards Carter and Evans at the point, the explosiveness of Jasmine Jones and the paint presence of Sam Fuehring also could weigh heavily into the outcome. Bench contributions from Shook, Dunham will be essential and if Syd can jump in an sink a few threes, we like Louisville's chances.
The Cards have three wins this season over Top-Five ranked opponents and are currently on a 13-game win streak on the road.
UConn? Say what you will about them, their dynasty, their record against Louisville. Discuss Williams, Nurse, Geno, Samuelson, Collier, Dangerfield, Stevens and Gaempel Pavilion all you want. All that goes out the window when the ball goes in the air.
We get the trio of Kara Lawson, Rebecca Lobo, "Idi Amin" and Holly Rowe on the four-letter network.
Expect a Husky love-in for two hours. If that gets old, and it surely will, why don't you listen to Nick and AJ give their take on the action on the radio? 790 AM locally and on the IHeart app.
So Cards...walk in confidently, play with inspiration and heart and score more points. Keep your heads high and play till the final buzzer. Win or lose...it should be an interesting one. Non-conference, sure...but national implication heavy and star-laden.
A preview of a Final Four match-up? Geno's continued domination over Louisville basketball? A new rising star on women's college basketball's horizon? Excitement or disappointment?
We'll know around 9 p.m. tonight.
Play like Louisville.
Cue up Hot Chelle Rae or Phil Collins for today's musical selection. Either "Tonight, tonight" or "I Can Feel It Coming in the Air tonight" I linked up both below:
In The Air Tonight