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Saturday, June 30, 2018

A Look Ahead at Field Hockey -- SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

A Brief Preview of Field Hockey


If the title looks familiar to you, let me say thank you for frequenting Cardinal Couple. Last week, I wrote a short piece about the upcoming women's soccer season. I called it a preview, but it ultimately became just some opinions about how the team might perform with the changes that have been made to the roster. With a lot of news about field hockey on and off the site this week, I figured it would be a good time to do the same thing for the field hockey team that I did last week for women's soccer. Admittedly, I know quite a bit less about field hockey than I do about soccer, but I have followed the team with interest since coming on as a writer at Cardinal Couple.

First, a quick look at some more honors that came in for UofL field hockey players. Four players on the team have been tabbed as potential future USA players, as Taylor Stone, Katie Walsh, Carter Ayers, and Meghan Schneider have been invited to Olympic Development camps. They'll join Ayeisha McFerran as players hoping to represent their country (McFerran is already on the World Cup roster for Ireland). I mentioned it last week, but these opportunities to train with the best players in your age group in the entire nation are incredibly helpful in the development of skills and understanding of the game. UofL Coach Justine Sowry is an incredible coach and teaches her players all kinds of things, but she would likely be the first to tell you that having additional training from other sources is nothing but helpful in situations such as these. Congratulations and good luck to these players.

Last year's season ended with a first round knockout in the NCAA tournament. After an overall 12-6 regular season record and a deep conference tournament run, it would not be unfair to say that a first round exit was a bit disappointing. However, the loss came at the hands of a good Northwestern team, and Louisville showed fight, losing only in overtime. Louisville's performance in conference last season (4-2 and a run to the semifinal game) is a much better indicator of their future success this season, as the ACC is widely considered the best field hockey conference by far. Louisville will hope to build on the experiences and success that they had last season going into a new year, in which much of last year's team returns.

Let's first look at the schedule. Outside of the conference matchups, which we already know will be rematches, Louisville plays seven games against non-conference opponents that they played last regular season. This includes rematches with Ohio State, Michigan, and Northwestern, who accounted for 4 of the 8 Louisville losses last season, and a game that counts against Miami (OH), with whom the Cards played only an exhibition last season. Following the alumnae game on August 18th, Louisville will dive straight into the meat of their schedule starting the very next day. They'll open the season with Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio State (all rematches), a breather game against UMass Lowell (which will need to be taken as seriously as any other game), and then a rematch against a Delaware team on the road that won the national championship two years ago (Card won last season 3-1 at home). If the Cards aren't awake to start this season, they could find themselves in an early hole. If they're chomping at the bit, ready to improve on their last year, though, they could open the season 5-0 with some impressive wins already under their belts.

Louisville will play a total of 19 regular season games, including the standard 6 against conference opponents. This schedule appears to be every bit as beefy as last season, if not more. Coach Sowry will need to get her team ready from the very beginning, as there is no time to ease into the schedule. Fortunately, she has a team of very experienced players that should be ready to answer the call. Of 16 players on the current roster (which does not include incoming freshman), 9 are juniors and seniors. These include the previously mentioned McFerran, Stone, Ayars, and Walsh, and adds in the influential Whena Munn and backup goalie (who was huge early last season) Hollyn Barr. The Cards did see four major losses last year with Abby Grimes, Marigrace Ragsdale, and Nicole Woods graduating and Minout Mink returning home after deciding the international life was not for her. Though the players filling these gaps have plenty of their own experience, we won't truly know the impact of these losses until the season is underway in earnest. All four players played in 22 of 22 games last season with Grimes, Ragsdale, and Woods all starting at least 21. The four players were all in the top 6 in team goals, and Mink was the team's leading goal scorer. These players will be missed to be sure, but only time will tell exactly how much.

Fortunately, the team stands to weather the departures. Every returning player on the roster saw at least 100 minutes last season, so the experience and knowledge of Coach Sowry's system is there. For better or worse, that majority of the schedule comes against teams that these players have faced before, so there is familiarity in the opponent as well. While the opponents know just as much about the Cards, there is benefit to newer players being comfortable with an opponent while trying to cement their roles. Louisville could have some bumps this season, but I would be shocked to see less than a .500 conference season and a .600 season overall. Those numbers may not be enough to get into the NCAA tournament, but those are only floor numbers for me. I believe that with the experience that this team returns, the ceiling is much higher. It all starts at the alumnae game on August 18th. We'll find out then.

The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour


Once again, Jared has chosen his job over his hobby and will abandon us at the station for his job at the bank. What a jerk, amirite? In all honesty, we look forward to Jared's return to the studio for the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour. Until then, we'll press on without him. Paulie, Jeff, and I will return to the studio on Mellwood and may or may not be joined by a special guest (Paulie really doesn't keep me as in the loop as you might think). Tune in to WCHQ FM at 11 AM for the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour on any platform that you listen to radio. WCHQ is available at 100.9 FM when in the signal range, but can be listened to anywhere on the WCHQ app or wchqfm.com and you can watch the show on Facebook Live on the WCHQ FM Facebook page.

Until next time, Go Cards!
-CH-

Friday, June 29, 2018

Women's Tennis Recruits -- 10 Rowers Earn Awards -- FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Women's Tennis Signs Three Recruits for 2018-19 Season

After losing two stars to graduation the women's tennis team has loaded back up in preparation for next season.  Louisville has signed a freshman and two transfers, who will be eligible to  play immediately.

Dina Chaika joins the Cards as an incoming freshman from Lermontov, Russia.  Her hometown sits a short distance north of Georgia (the European country) and a bit west of the Black Sea.  Chaika comes in after being one of the top tennis players in all of Russia as well as earning a ranking as high as #46 as a 14-year-old in all of Europe.

Nikolina Jovic comes in from Gamecock country down in South Carolina with three years of eligibility remaining.  The Bosnian native (women's soccer's Sanela Hodzic hails from there as well) won several national awards in high school and earned WTA world ranking points.

Dina Wong is a rising junior after transferring in from New Mexico.  The Hawaii native went 16-5 as a freshman including an unblemished record in conference play.  Wong took the role of the No. 1 spot in singles last year and was part of the No. 2 doubles team at New Mexico.

Although I have never met Coach Mark Beckham personally I know that Paulie speaks highly of him.  I will put my faith in Coach Beckham as he hopes to improve from last year's 13-13 record.

Matches at the Bass-Rudd Tennis Center have free admission whether it is being held inside or outside.  Just make sure to be aware of a mishit and a tennis ball headed your way!


10 Rowers Named to All-ACC Academic Team

All of the other spring sports have named their academic teams, but rowing seems to be a bit behind.  The wait was worth it as Louisville had 10 players named to the All-ACC Academic Team.

Seniors Rebecca Busk, Kirsti Harrison, Callie McGowan, Hannah Richardson, Sophie Schulz, Kim Streetz, Allison Zimmermann, junior Abbi Fitts, and freshman Violette Legrand were the 10 honorees.  The Cards led the way with 10 players on the 62-player roster.  Four other schools placed second with eight each.

UofL closed out the season ranked 20 in the US Rowing/CRCA coaches' poll and fifth in the ACC.  This team had high levels of success on the water and in the classroom this year, something they continue to improve each year.

What Day is it and Other News and Notes

We have reached the final business day of June and when you tune into the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour tomorrow it will be the halfway point of  2018!  Have you held true to your New Year's resolution?

It is National Hug Day so go hug a friend, family member, or the first person you see on the street!  For me, I have to point out it is National Camera Day, but no new UofL pics coming until August.  If you've attended a lacrosse match on Floyd Street you would be familiar with the food trucks that make appearances so it is a good time to acknowledge National Food Truck Day.

The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour is set for its normal time, 11:00-12:00.  As always, you can tune in on 100.9 fm if you're in the Louisville area or hop on Facebook Live to see what they might be up to in the studio.  You'll have the pleasure of Case this week before he leaves for vacation.  However, I'm counting money and surviving surprise audits for a fourth straight Saturday so they question is "When will Jared have a Saturday off of will Sunday be added to his work schedule next?"  Stay tuned to see what happens!

Happy Friday and Go Cards!

- Jared -

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Catching up with...Kay Morissette -- THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


THE KAY MORISSETTE INTERVIEW


We normally run the "Catching Up" sequence here at Cardinal Couple once a week but, when presented with the opportunity to interview new UofL assistant Lacrosse Coach Kay Morissette Wednesday, how could I say no? How often do you get to ask questions and have a conversation with one of the greats in the Lacrosse world, after all? 

The Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada native may just be the best Lacrosse player to ever suit up for the Cards in the history of the program. Graduating from Louisville in 2016, she is the Cardinal all-time leader in draw controls...with 572 in her four year time as a student-athlete. In her 73 games at UofL the Cards went 49-24 and she scored 167 goals...fourth-highest in UofL history. She was a IWLCA First-Team All-American twice (2015 and 2016)...the only Cardinal to achieve the award twice. 

As you listen to the interview, here's a few topics she discusses: 



Tailgating with Kay at TaxSlayer Bowl
-- What are some of the responsibilities as an assistant coach? 

-- What is the "Teeter Way" and what does it consist of? 

-- What made Kay so successful at winning draw controls? 

-- What did Kay have to trade to get Lacrosse started at her high school? 

-- How did Kay spend her summers in Bowmanville? 

-- What do her uncles do? 

-- Why Louisville? 

It was a great honor and esteemed privilege to interview Kay Morissette and we wish her and the LAX Cards the best of seasons in the spring of 2019. 

Interview LINK: https://soundcloud.com/user-748907999/dr0000_1426mp3


WNBA UPDATE


Angel McCoughtry saw 24 minutes last night for Atlanta in a 93-80 loss to the Chicago Sky. She had six pts., four rebounds and five fouls. Atlanta is 7-7 on the season. 

Asia Taylor got 14 minutes for the Indiana Fever in a 101-89 loss to the Connecticut Sun. I watched a bit of this one on TV last night and "A-Tayy" looked pretty good out there for the hapless Fever, totaling four points and three grabs. At 1-14, it's obvious that the Fever needs some chemistry and someone who can play defense. 

Myisha Hines-Allen plays tonight for the Washington Mystics against the New York Liberty in our nation's capitol. Washington is 9-5 on the season, good for fourth place in the standings and it is the first meeting this season between the two squads. 


ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY

Believe it or not, but columnist Jared Anderson joined us one year ago here at Cardinal Couple! 

We certainly appreciate Jared's diligence in columns, his excellent photography work and coverage of UofL sporting events. An integral member of the "A-Team", he also balances us with a full-time job sorting pennies from nickles, River City Cards, the Louisville Bats, playing the euphonium, devoting time to his church and creating havoc at Lou City FC games. 

In addition, he's a pretty good guy to know as well and it's rumored he's got a "cutie" stashed away down in Tallahassee, FL. 

Happy anniversary, Jared! Stop by anytime to pick up your keys for one of the Cardinal Couple golf carts and to the executive washroom and banana daiquiri lounge deep in the secret location and clandestine recesses of the Cardinal Couple Worldwide Corporate headquarters.  




paulie
xxxxx



-- 

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Catching Up With....Justine Sowry -- WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


THE JUSTINE SOWRY INTERVIEW



This week's "Catching Up" interview focuses on Louisville Field Hockey. We were able to catch up with head coach Justine Sowry on Tuesday afternoon and spend some time with her reviewing last season, discussing the players and their accomplishments over the spring and summer and looking ahead to the 2018 season. 

I appreciate Coach Sowry for allowing us to get our readers prepared for what looks to be a very promising and exciting 2018 UofL Field Hockey season! The Cards start action with an exhibition against the alumnae on August 18th. before travelling to Michigan on the 19th. 

Some listening points as you listen to the linked interview below: 

-- How did Coach feel about the 2017 season? 

-- Which players have been participating on tournament and national squad this summer?

-- What has UofL goalkeeper Ayeshia McFerran been doing in Ireland? 

-- How did Coach Sowry critique Ayeshia's game against Duke in the ACC semifinals? 

-- Who are some of the players that will have an impact on the 2018 squad? 

-- What message does Coach have for the UofL Field hockey fans?  


A great interview with the delightful Justine Sowry on an afternoon that started out cloudy and turned into one of the most fierce and severe thunderstorms over the UofL campus that this columnist can remember in quite a while. Watching the storm from Sowry's second-floor office window at Trager Stadium, we were amazed to see the field below was actually coated in several inches of water. A field that normally drains quite rapidly and needs the use of water cannons at halftime during most games was so soaked that one could have gone tubing on it.  

The first photo of Coach (and doesn't she look absolutely adorable?) in today's article was taken right after I entered her office. Note how bright the skies are outside her window. Several minutes later, all hell broke loose. 



As we concluded, due to the weather, I remained in the offices for a brief while and chatted amicably with Coach, Field Hockey S.I.D. Lori Korte, assistant coach Erin Schneidtmiller and Director of Operations Debbie Bell. Thanks to Lori for setting up the interview and all of them for keeping Paulie entertained while he waited for the skies to clear. 

It may have been stormy and blustery yesterday afternoon outside Coach Sowry's office but the future and promise of UofL Field Hockey is quite bright and sunny for 2018! 

The interview LINK below: 

CATCHING UP WITH JUSTINE SOWRY 6/26/18


AYESHIA MCFERRAN NAMED TO IRELAND'S WORLD CUP ROSTER


While we're on Field Hockey, we also found out yesterday the Cardinal rising senior goalkeep Ayeshia McFerrran was named to Ireland's World Cup roster. 

It's the first appearance since 2002 for the Irish squad "The Green Army" in World Cup action. They are ranked #16 in the world and will have their first pool match on July 21st against the U.S.A. in London, England...home of the 2018 Field Hockey World Cup. 

Congratulations to Ayeshia for this prestigious honor and chance to compete against the world's best Field Hockey players and teams! 


paulie
xxxxx

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Kay Morissette Named Asst Coach -- Academic Awards -- Bats Update -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Kaylin Morissette Named Assistant Lacrosse Coach


A legend when it comes to Louisville lacrosse, Kaylin "Kay" Morissette, was named an assistant coach yesterday.  She served as a student assistant last season.

Morissette is a native of Canada like Scott Teeter and coached on his staff at Canisius in 2017.  They earned a MAAC Championship in her lone season up north.

During her stint as a player at Louisville Morissette became one of the most decorated players in program history.  She ranks high in several categories: 572 draw controls (first), 51 assists (second), 73 games played (second), 218 points (third), 119 ground balls (third), and 167 goals (fourth).  Her 572 draw controls is nearly double the 247, which ranks second in program history.

Expect to see a big improvement in the 2019 team as Morissette's role will increase.  Her and Teeter could surprise some folks and have a Top 20 team next year.

More All-ACC Academic Awards

Three spring teams announced All-ACC academic awards for their players.  Men's tennis, women's tennis, and softball had a combined 13 players earn the honors.

For men's tennis, George Hedley, Parker Wynn, and Christopher Morin-Kougoucheff met the 3.0 GPA to make the team.

For women's tennis, Mariana Humberg, Raven Neely, Abbie Pahz, and Sena Suswam earned the honors.  It is the second appearance for Humberg and first for the others.

Softball had six make the team with Caitlin Ferguson, Celene Funke, Megan Hensley, Jenna Jordan, Sidney Melton, and Maddy Newman earning the academic honors.  This is Melton's third year of earning All-ACC academic honors.

Louisville Bats Mid-season Report

Bat breaks mid-swing
Worldwide provided us with an updated of Louisville City FC this weekend so I thought we could talk about the other professional team in town too.  I have been busy this UofL off-season covering the Louisville Bats with my partner-in-crime at River City Cards, Mike Gilpatrick.

For those who do not regularly follow the team the transitioned from their standout purple to a more standard red and navy at the beginning of 2017 and continued that this year.

Following their victory last night the Bats are 29-43 and on a three-game win streak.  Sadly, they are last in the league, but only by 1.5 games.  They're eighth in the league (out of 14) with 20 home victories, but their 9-21 road record is dead last and way below the next team.

#12 Nick Senzel
Nick Senzel, the Reds top prospect, was having a great rookie season before an injury and immediate surgery to his right index finger placed him on IR.  Hernan Iribarren is a name that's been spoken in Louisville for several years.  Although his numbers have seen a small drop over time he has taken a role in mentoring younger players in helping them on their journey to become MLB stars.

The Bats' pitching staff has had some rough patches, but also some great outings.  Recently, the Bats gave up 13, 16, and 12 runs over a three-game period.  However, there have also been some one- and two-run games allowed as well.  Robert Stephenson and Cody Reed have each had an 11-strikeout performance this season, neither of them going the full nine.

#2 Hernan Iribarren
Many players move up to MLB or go down to Double-A as the season progresses so it is nice to be able to shoot different players over the span of 70-something home games.  I will only be at about 40 of those, though.  Some familiar faces seen in the press box include Nick Evans (WBB SID) helps with operations and scorebook, Steph McNamara (lacrosse alum) helps with social media and post-game recaps, Daryl Foust (The Crunch Zone) runs camera at the games and Mike Gilpatrick (River City Cards) covers games for RCC. Nick Curran, UofL WBB Radio play-by-play expert, handles the Bats broadcasts on 790 WKRD. Paulie listens most nights the Bats are on the field and if you can't make it to the ball-park or the Bats are on the road, listening to Nick makes you feel like you are there.

The season started rough for the Bats, but they have settled down recently and are performing as hot as the Reds.  By the way, that Cincinnati team is 29-27 over their last 56 games, which is better than any stretch they have had the last two years.

What Day Is It?

Well, it's Tuesday so why am I writing today's article?  Paulie has an interviewed planned for this afternoon (shhh, it's a secret who it is) and will have a full report on that tomorrow along with a link to the full interview.

Yesterday marked exactly six months until Christmas.  This past weekend marked the longest daylight day of the year, meaning the amount of daylight we get will become shorter from here on out.

It is National Forgiveness Day.  Has someone wronged you?  Let go of that hatred or revenge-mindset and forgive them for their wrongdoing.  If you have a special barber, or cosmetologist, or someone who takes care of your nails for you then make sure to show your appreciation for them on National Beautician's Day.  Enjoy the rest of the day with a tropical cocktail or chocolate cake.

Happy Tuesday and Go Cards!

- Jared -

Monday, June 25, 2018

Aubrey Griffin Down to Two -- MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


6'0" 2019 PROSPECT AUBREY GRIFFIN NARROWS IT TO UCONN AND LOUISVILLE

Soccer's loss is basketball's gain. 


Aubrey Griffin has grown up in a basketball family. Her dad, former NBA player Adrian Griffin, spent three years as a star at Seton Hall before taking his game to "the league". He spent nine years playing the NBA -- 477 games -- and is now an assistant coach for the Oklahoma Thunder.

Her older brother, Alan, heads to Illinois this fall to start his student-athlete journey. He scored 28 points in the championship game for Stepinac High School in the the NY State Class AA Federation Tournament of Champions game and was named MVP of the tournament.

Younger brother A.J, also 6'5", is a rising sophomore at Stepinac and averaged over 12 p.p.g. in his freshman year. He already has offers on the table from Illinois, Seton Hall and Wake Forest. Her mom Audrey ran track at Seton Hall and was an All-American on the 400 meter relay team. 

We're not sure if the family dog is "tops in show" or has a blazing 40 yard dash time...but it wouldn't surprise us. The family has had a lot of success in athletics. 

So...back to Aubrey...Why soccer originally? 

The story, like many high school athletes, has to do with growing. She developed a love for soccer in grade school.  As she began to get taller in the seventh grade, the story goes that her Dad suggested she might try adding a second sport to her activities. She was, according to her mom, a prolific scorer in soccer...fast of foot and quick to beat defenders and collect goals. Those quick feet also benefited her in hoops. Even if it was a casual and a bit reluctant addition and switch-over from the turf to the hardwood. Basketball wasn't quite winning her over just yet at the time...but successes on the court eventually led her to concentrate on hoops solely about a year later.


Her new found hoops prowess hit a snag during her sophomore year. Coming off a freshman high school season where she scored 51 points in a game and averaged almost 25 points and 10 rebounds...she was preparing for her sophomore year at Ossining in a fall league game when, on a breakaway layup, she went crashing to the floor. She remembers the knee turning inward, hearing a pop and then pain. If you've ever had an ACL injury (like your humble columnist has) the experience is unforgettable. THe pain subsides pretty quickly, you think you might be OK...and then you try to put weigh on the leg, try to walk...and it's not happening for you. 

Knee injuries are devastating. Ask former Card Asia Taylor, who suffered one in high school. Ask Lindsey Duvall, current Card who has had four knee surgeries. The doctors and her family chose to take the positive path and assure her that once the surgery and rehab were completed, she's come back even stronger.

And she did.

A successful junior year. A trip (uninvited but determined to compete) to the USA U-17 tryouts. She made it to the last 18 but did not make the final cut. She partially blames her unselfishness as a reason she didn't make the squad -- trying to set up teammates instead of being a scorer. 


Louisville has been following her since her freshman year. The Cards stayed with her and kept their interest during the injury. The Cards reportedly have an offer on the table. UConn got interested during her junior season but, from what we can tell, has not offered. Audrey attended the UConn-Louisville game last winter. Sat behind the UConn bench in the 11-point Cardinal loss. 

The Cards 2019 recruiting efforts have been stellar so far. Nyah Green, a 6'1" guard and Ramani Parker, a 6'4" forward, have given verbals. Louisville will graduate four at the end of the 2018-19 season, so there are roster spots available. 

A family atmosphere. A chance to play in the KFC YUM! Center. The Cards are in a intriguing position and, although we can't ask coaches about prospective recruits, we would think the Cards are in a good position to gain her services. a 50/50 chance, if you will.  No word on any prospective visits to campus yet. The Cards have had great success in the past with wings that are around the 6'0" mark. 

It is hard to say "No" to UConn if they come calling. Sara Hammond did it, though. Audrey  freely admits she's an independent thinker that likes to push herself and try things on her own. Maybe the type of person who might not let the UConn hype influence her and could gravitate to "the Ville". 

Recruiting is a science, a skill and an art. Despite all the efforts, though, ultimately it comes down to a prospect and family deciding what will be the best fit for the student-athlete. Having the security of knowing your coach will be there for your time on campus, that that coach has assembled one of the best staffs and assistants in the game and that you'll perform in an excellent conference and in front of loyal fans who fill the seats can play a big part in the decision making. Also, does the school have the academic program that you have an interest in?  

Aubrey Griffin is the number 56 prospect in ESPNW's Hoop Gurlz Super 60 for the 2019 class. We think she'd look great in Cardinal colors. And #44 jersey is unclaimed. Her dad wore #44 when he was with the Chicago Bulls. Her dad's middle name is Darrell. Darrell Griffith may have been the best basketball player in Louisville history. My favorite #44 of all-time has to be "Pistol" Pete Maravich . A scorer supreme. Aubrey has shown she can fill up a hoop as well. 

The way this writer sees it...Aubrey, the stars are aligned for you to wear #44 at Louisville. 

(INFORMATION AND PARTS OF TODAY'S ARTICLE CREDITED TO AN ESPNW ARTICLE BY WALTER VILLA 6/21/18 ABOUT GRIFFIN)


paulie
xxxxx











Sunday, June 24, 2018

Some Purple Soccer Updates -- SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Louisville City FC


I thought I'd take a minute today to step away from UofL Athletics and get an update on other Louisville Athletics action.

The boys in purple, Louisville City FC are having another fantastic year, and are looking to repeat their USL championship from last year.  LouCity is currently sitting in 2nd place in the USL Eastern Conference 5 points back of their fierce rival FC Cincinnati.  The ones in purple do have two games in hand, and with a 7-2-4 record, a reasonable chance of making up those points in the extra two games.  We're only about halfway through the season, so there's plenty of time to make up those 5 points in any case, but the extra two games in hand certainly give Lou City an extra leg up.

Outside of league play, Lou City is competing in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, commonly called just The US Open Cup, or even just The Open Cup.  Louisville City is the only USL team to advance to the round of 8, after knocking off fellow USL representative Nashville SC on June 20th.

By being the USL team to advance the furthest in the tournament, Louisville City FC receives a $25,000 bonus.  Louisville has, to this point, played all of its Open Cup games at home, and this year, all of those Open Cup games have been held at UofL's Lynn Stadium, an arrangement that seems to be working out well for the hometown team.  They will be heading out on the road for the next Open Cup game, heading up to Chicago, to play the Chicago Fire July 18th, a middle-of-the-pack Eastern Conference MLS team.  For comparison, the New England Revolution, who Lou City defeated at Lynn stadium in the 4th round stand with 24 points, while the Fire stand with 20.  Based on that, I'd say that this is a very winnable game for City.  Knocking off two MLS teams in the Open Cup would be a coup, particularly when combined with 2 wins over FC Cincinnati who announced in May that they would be joining the MLS.

Personally, I'm glad to see UofL taking a bit more collaborative approach with Lou City.  We
effectively have 3 quality teams representing the city between the UofL Men's and Women's teams and Louisville City FC.  While soccer is the most popular sport in the world, it's not quite so popular in the US.  Working together to grow the size of the overall game is a benefit to everyone.  While I understand the wear and tear that extra games during the summer visits to the turf at Lynn Stadium, presumably UofL is getting some remuneration to help offset the costs of the TLC given to the field during a time when the field would still need upkeep, but would otherwise not see all that much use.

If you're not keeping up with Louisville City FC, I would encourage you to do so.  They are a great team, representing the city with excellence and class.

CCRH


As always on Sunday mornings, if you didn't get a chance to check it out live, do please go catch the Facebook Live recording of The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour.

It is available at https://www.facebook.com/WCHQfm/videos/2079170958772843/.

Jared was off changing 20s into 5s and 10s, but in his spot we had the ever-awesome Daryl Foust join Case, Paulie, and I.  We didn't talk much about UofL women's sports, alas, but we had a lot of fun and I think the conversation was engaging and entertaining.  See how you do in the quiz about UofL facilities.

We gratefully acknowledge our hosts at WCHQ 100.9 FM for their continued hosting of The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour and a very special "Thank You!" to Kathy Weisbach, station manager, for foregoing a couple of extra hours of Saturday sleep to engineer our broadcast and Facebook Live.


--
JMcA

Saturday, June 23, 2018

A Look Ahead for Women's Soccer - SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

A Slight Preview of the 2018 Season


As World Cup season is upon us, I've been thinking a lot about soccer; even more than usual if you can imagine it. I've always truly enjoyed soccer. I've played it since I was three. It was my primary sport in high school and my favorite sport during college intramurals. I even joined an indoor soccer team with some friends from work. That story ended rather unfortunately, with my ankle injury, but it hasn't dampened my love of the game. I attend as many Louisville games as I can, but I've still not made it out to a Louisville City game. I've been watching World Cup games all this last week, and I'm hoping to attend games in 8 years when the Cup comes to the US. 

So much soccer, especially in the dead period, makes me think about the future of UofL soccer. Louisville is coming off of a season in which they performed decently. They finished the season with more wins than losses overall, on the road, and at home. Their only sub .500 record came in conference, and don't forget that Louisville plays in a conference that is pretty good across the board at women's sports. There were games that the Cards may have been able to win that they didn't. There were games maybe they should have won that they didn't. But there were also games in which they exceeded expectations. 

In college athletics, it's hard to be patient and await results from a team. Professional teams have more time to develop, with their best players being in for the long haul. Every college player is on a ticking clock from the time they step on campus. Seeing a season without positive results feels like a waste, but this past season felt like one of development. Louisville had a very young core last season, one that hadn't gotten a lot of time together. That core is returning for another year, with the addition of some Gatorade Players of the Year, as Jared mentioned yesterday. It is unfortunate to lose a key defensive leader in Inger Katrine Bjerke or an offensive stalwart in Alison Price, as well as the other players that have moved on, but the Cards are poised to replace these roles. The team has grown over the offseason with an understanding of how their season could have ended differently last year. 

While Louisville had a successful non-conference season last year, the level of competition may have contributed to the struggles in the conference season. A more challenging non-conference schedule would likely have marred the overall record for last season, it may have also brought the young team together more quickly. Nothing draws out the best in players like competition, and Louisville didn't get their true taste of consistent high level competition until conference play started. Louisville's youth showed through early, but the team came together as the season wore on.

We'll get our first opportunity to see how last year's freshman and sophomores have developed together and how the newcomers are onboarding when the Cards take on Morehead State in an exhibition game on August 11th. Louisville will be in action at home twice more in the next 8 days against Wright State and Xavier, two games which the Cards should be able to win. The non-conference schedule also includes the annual game against Kentucky, a rematch against Purdue, and a road matchup with Michigan. All three of these games come in a row, with two on the road, and will be the real litmus test for Louisville this season. That stretch of games will be similar to the type of stretches Louisville will encounter during the conference season, and success will bode well for the rest of the season. 

With still over a month and a half before kickoff, there is a lot of time to continue examination of the future for the Cards. I'll be looking forward to the season getting underway, and I really think there will be more success for Louisville this season. Nothing we can do but sit and wait, as the team continues to prepare through the summer.

The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour


Jared is out today, but the other three fools are in the studio as normal and may be joined by a special guest. We'll power through the summer slump together and see what kind of quiz Paulie can bring to us this week. As always, the show is available wherever you like to listen to WCHQ (wchqfm.com, WCHQ app, WCHQ FM on Facebook Live, or 100.9 FM) at 11AM. Tune in for your weekly fix of goofiness mixed with some Louisville Women's Athletics.

Until next time, Go Cards!
-CH-

Friday, June 22, 2018

Golf and Track & Field Academic Awards -- WSoc Commits Earn Praises -- FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Five Golfers Named to All-ACC Academic Team


Olivia Cason, Lauren Hartlage, and Molly Skapik were named to the All-ACC Academic Women's Golf  Team.

Cason heads into her senior season with a 3.503 GPA.  Hartlage is a rising junior and holds a high 3.983 GPA.  Skapik recently graduated and finished her career at Louisville with a 3.66 GPA.  All three are business majors, one of the toughest schools at UofL.

To be eligible for consideration for the All-ACC Academic Team, a student-athlete, regardless of classification, must have earned a 3.00 grade point average for the previous semester and maintained a 3.00 cumulative average during her academic career.


On the men's side of things Simon Zach and Matthias Schmid were named to the All-ACC Academic Team.

Zach is a rising senior and Schmid is set to begin his sophomore year.  Their GPA's were not listed, but both met the qualifications of the 3.00 GPA.


Two Track and Field Stars Named Academic All-Americans


Kassidy Manning and Joe Delgado were named to the 2017-18 Google Cloud Academic All-American Cross Country/Track and Field Team.  Both were third team selections.

Manning just completed her junior year with a perfect 4.0 GPA in accounting.  Delgado is a graduate student and is majoring in urban planning with a 3.67 GPA.  Both were listed on the UofL AD Honor Roll.





Two Women's Soccer Signees Named Gatorade Players of the Year



Cassie Amshoff and Delaney Snyder were named Gatorade Players of the Year.  The award, which names one player from each state, selects players based on athletic and academic excellence as well as exemplary character demonstrated.

Amshoff is a midfielder and forward from Sacred Heart here in town.  She led the Valkyries to the state championship game.  Snyder comes from Moon Area High School (Penn.) and led her team to an undefeated season and state championship.


What Day is it?



Well, first off, with yesterday being the longest day of daylight of the year we will start seeing the sun set earlier each day from now on, sadly.

If you like food it is National Chocolate Eclair Day and National Onion Rings Day.  Both sound delicious.  For us crazy guys here at Cardinal Couple it is a national holiday for us- National Stupid Guy Thing Day!  Well, that might just be me, but definitely an exciting day.

Happy Friday and Go Cards!

- Jared -

Thursday, June 21, 2018

An outsider looks at Tyra -- THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


DAVID WATSON WEIGHS IN ON LOUISVILLE A.D.



Hey-Ho and Good Morning! Dave O with you today while Paulie and the Miss Sonya take a few days away from the fray to vacation. When I talked with "the big guy" on Tuesday to discuss the article, one thing we kept coming back to were "coaches". Louisville has brought in some very good ones. They've sweetened the pot for a few more. 

When I refer to "Louisville" and "they", I am alluding to the job that Vince Tyra has done in the eight months since Tom Jurich was let go. October 18, 2017.

These are views from someone (namely me) who does not live in Louisville but has relatives in the area and has been fascinated with Louisville Athletics since the days of Darrell Griffith and the Doctors of Dunk. I'll admit it, my first love was Notre Dame. It's tough being a Cardinal supporter in South Bend. Much easier in Bradenton, my current locale. It's possible I may have been the only Cardinal fan in Medford, N.J., where I spent those "formative years" and where I met my wife. 

I have seen the good and the bad associated with the Cards. My oldest daughter dreamed of playing field hockey at UofL but the Cards didn't show the same interest, her skill sets weren't quite ACC proficient and she went to, and prospered, at a northeastern United States university. When I lived in Muncie, we'd drive down to watch women's and men's basketball and the occasional football game. I met Paulie at WBB, random circumstances where I just happened to end up sitting next to him in those magical Freedom Hall days. Those days before he eventually descended to his current spot in the YUM! where he keeps Jerry Abramson and Al Benninger awake and informed.

I sat through Cooper and Crum. Strong and Krags. Bustin and Sowry. I've said words while listening to Cardinal radio broadcasts that would make a drunken sailor on shore leave blush. I've yelled so loud from my garage about good things that the neighbors have come over to see if I was OK. Your typical Cards fan, right? 

I'll start here on Vince. It has got to be one of the toughest things in the world to "come in" after a legend departs. 

Especially under the circumstances that existed at the time. There was a strong "pro-Tom" movement from what I heard, a strong "anti-board" movement as well. Vince accepted a job where he was, basically, tossed into a red-hot skillet and expected not to scorch or burn. 

He was also faced with decisions and speculation. As Bob Valvano and others have said, when A.D.'s leave, coaches do too. It was not a smooth and controversy-free transition. I liken it to pulling in to restaurant for a small snack and getting a plate of food a foot high. A basketball coach was needed. The NCAA and FBI were monitoring Louisville Athletics. Something had to be done about a lacrosse coach out-of-control. 

Welcome to college athletics, Vince. 


Step by step, deliberately and with care, he moved forward. Padgett and Teeter joined the fold. Lolla and Ferguson-Dayes were given assurances and enhancements. A university President was hired. Walz and McDonnell received the type of extensions and support needed to keep them on campus. A surprise but totally understandable retirement in softball. Working with a board that most consider a detriment to Louisville Athletics. A governor that is solidly in UK's camp. Vince was climbing Mt. Everest in a speedo and swimming trunks. But, he's still smiling and making progress.   

One-by-one, the mountains were turned into molehills. And, Vince's long-term love and support for the program became obvious. Standing in the snow at lacrosse, watching softball, basketball, volleyball and all other sports...being there, being seen and finding out what was needed and how he could help. The doomsayers and naysayers were hushed. The University was starting to crawl out of the abyss and striding toward daylight. 

I watched this with intrigue and interest 900 miles and 14 hours away from the Belknap campus. One by one, Vince "got a grip" on an issue and carried it to completion. 

Paulie and I had a few conversations along the way. At times, the Cardinal Couple co-owner was disillusioned and almost apathetic. I think he mirrored a lot of Cardinal fans' feelings. Today, on this first day of summer, Paulie is now optimistic and confident about the 2018-19 season and Cardinal Athletics. In this "myoptic" void...or "summer doldrums" as he calls it, there is faith and pride. Confidence in his voice. Interviews ahead with coaches and players. He shows excitement. 

As there is with me. 

Would I feel this way if it had been another choice for A.D? That, of course, is very hard to say -- but, despite my undying admiration for what Tom Jurich did in 20 years at UofL -- I think the UofL Athletics program is standing on solid ground now. 

I fully hope, believe and pray that it remains that way. 

It's Thursday. The sun is out here and shining shortly before 9 a.m. The golf course is calling in the distance, I can hear it, and it's asking me to come out and play, to lose balls in the woods, to three-putt greens, to completely duff fairway irons. So -- I'm off.

Thanks for letting me share these pages today. Have a great Thursday and, following Jared's lead, I'll remind you that today is the first day of Summer, National Selfie Day and National Seashell Day. Why not send Cardinal Couple a selfie of yourself holding a seashell? 

All comments appreciated on my article.  




Your friend, 

Dave O.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

McFerran on Irish National Team -- Leon Finishes Fifth -- Men's Soccer Hosts Special Event -- WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

McFerran on Irish National Team

Our favorite field hockey goalkeeper will be headed to Germany for a few days.  Ayeisha McFerran was named to the Irish National Field Hockey Team.

The 22-player roster will compete in a tournament consisting of three countries.  Between June 21-23 the Irish will face Germany and Canadian preparation for the World Cup.

McFerran has played a crucial part for Louisville the past three years and is a shoo-in to be a team captain for her senior year.  She is a three-time All-American selection and also holds All-ACC and All-West Region honors.

A recent memory we at Cardinal Couple have of McFerran is her standout performance against Duke in the ACC semifinals.  She held her own in the shootout en route to the upset victory, sending the Cards to their first ACC Championship game appearance.

Make all of us proud and bring back some wins while enjoying your European Tour!




Leon Takes Fifth in USATF Junior Outdoor Championships

Gabriela Leon had a strong outing in the pole fault at the USATF Junior Outdoor Championships, placing fifth.  She cleared 4,10m/13-5 1/4.

Leon just concluded her freshman year for Louisville.  The ever-growing-star just turned 19 a few days ago (Happy belated Birthday) and has a bright future at Louisville.

What's that overhead in the sky? It's a bird...no, it's a plane....WAIT! It's Gabriela Leon!



Men's Soccer Hosts Kickin' It with JT and Friends


I just reported on something special the men's soccer team, but they're already back at it again.  The date for Kickin' It with JT and Friends was announced yesterday and is set for Saturday, July 21 at Mockingbird Valley Sports Complex.

JT is Coach Lolla's nephew and is an avid soccer fan.  This event celebrates the gifts of participants with special needs and promotes physical, mental, and social development through the game of soccer.

Howie Lindsey will be this year's guest emcee.  He will announce the name of each participant as they race down the celebration tunnel, surrounded by the men's soccer team.  The special guests will participate in soccer matches among other activities and games.

One of the reasons UofL is one of the top schools in the country in volunteer hours is all of the time and commitment our student-athletes and squads give to helping those with different talents.  Thank you for representing the university so well.

What Day Is It?


Sport your patriotism through National Bald Eagle Day while enjoying an ice cream soda or vanilla milkshake.  It is also World Refugee Day and New Identity Day.

It is also National OODT Day. That stands for Outfit Of The Day. Express yourself! We all know we feel a little better and a little more confident (especially our women readers) when it all clicks and you're out there looking absolutely fabulous!

Walk up to someone today and tell them "You look marvelous!"

Enjoy your Wednesday, cold dessert, stylish threads and change your name for the day. Go Cards!

- Jared -

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A Tayy Back To Play in WNBA -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


ASIA TAYLOR SIGNED BY INDIANA FEVER

Asia Taylor: Part Deux. 


The Cardinal great has returned to the WNBA for the second time this year -- and for the 2018 season. Just slightly over a month from when she was cut by the Washington Mystics, the Indiana Fever have come calling and included Taylor on their roster. She replaces waived third-year guard Jazmon Gwathmey on the roster and received an undisclosed free agent contract with the 1-10 Fever. 

Asia will be joining the Indiana squad in Los Angeles for tonight's name against the Sparks and their West Coast swing. It's a battle of the two teams having quite different seasons...Los Angeles is atop the WNBA with an 8-2 record. 

It's been an eventful 30 days for the 6'1" Taylor, who led Louisville in rebounding in 2013-14. After leaving the Mystics, she switched teams in the ABL (the Australian league)...moving from east coast to west, from Sydney to Perth. Taylor was one of the top five free agent in Australia and also considered one of the top five players in the ABL. 

Let's hope Pokey Chatman, general manager and head coach of the Fever, gives Asia a chance to do here in the United States what she was able to accomplish in "the land down under". The Fever need something good to happen for them -- they've hardly been "burning up" in the WNBA. 

A first look at the current Indiana roster reveals a lot of youth. There are four rookies on the 12-player squad. Ohio State's dynamic duo of Kelsey Mitchell and Stephanie Mavunga are two of them. We all probably remember Victoria Vivians from Mississippi State. A fourth "rookie" actually came to the Fever from the Turkish League, via California and Belgium in Hind Ben Abdolkader. Three players, including Taylor have just three or less years in "the league". Coach Chatman also has another Mitchell on the squad...Tiffany Mitchell, who was a South Carolina star. 


Kelsey Mitchell has taken the WNBA by "storm"...leading the team with 17.5 ppg in her first season. Tiffany Mitchell checks in at third in team scoring with 10.5 ppg and veteran Candice Dupree contributes 13.9 a contest. The Fever also have one of Worldwide Jeff's favorite players in Natalie Achowna, the Notre Dame powerhouse, who is fourth in scoring with 9.6 a night.   

Taylor feels things happen for a reason. A recent Facebook quote from her reveals: 

"My Mama always told me -- What GOD has for you, no man can take from you. I believe that with everything in me. I said this when Washington released me and Ima say it again. GOD'S PLAN. I never doubt it." 

The Fever could probably use some "Divine Intervention" if they are to make the WNBA Playoffs this season...but they are building a roster with youth and former great DI players and the process could take a few years. 

A-Tayy is back and she's got the Fever. Or, actually the Fever's got her and let's hope she can be a part of the resurgence of the squad that is 90 minutes north of Louisville. The Fever returns to Indianapolis June 24th. for a 6 p.m. Sunday game against the Connecticut Sun. 

Dedicated, optimistic. Unwavering in her faith and belief. We've watched Asia since her years in Columbus, Ohio high school hoops. Commiserated with her on her injuries. Celebrated her successes. Watched her turn into a supremely confident woman who has a passion, a purpose and a path. 

We wish her the best of luck and a productive time with the Fever. From Columbus to Louisville to Minnesota to Israel, Australia, Washington and...now...Indianapolis and all points in-between. If her luggage could talk, what stories I'm sure it could tell. 

And, we can't wait for the next chapters....


paulie
xxxxx



  

Monday, June 18, 2018

Good Morning Campers! -- MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


JUNE AND JULY FEATURE SEVERAL UOFL WOMEN'S ATHLETIC CAMPS



Learning the game the right way. Receiving instruction and honing skills from qualified and knowledgeable instructors. Testing your skills and seeing how you fare in a group environment against your peers and age group. 

These are a few of the things that the youth in sports can gain and benefit from in summer camps on the University of Louisville campus in June and July. Almost all of the sports programs at UofL offer summer camps and the participants flock to them to learn, compete, have fun and grow their games and confidence. Let's look at a couple this morning. 

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL CAMPS


Jeff Walz, his assistants and staff, and the Cardinal WBB student-athletes just recently completed a team camp on Sunday. A team camp for junior varsity and varsity squads. The final camp of the summer will start Wednesday (June 20th.) and is the eagerly anticipated Elite Camp for 9-12 graders. 

Over the years, I've dropped in to watch this one and have seen many future DI stars work their games under the watchful eye of the Cardinals. The venue has changed over the years...previously at Cardinal Arena and the S.A.C. building, the camp has moved across campus and is staged at the  Student Recreation Center (SRC). 

Kate Tucker is the information "to-go" source on this one and, as the hard-working WBB Director of Operations, has always been gracious in getting me information about it. Drop her a message at kate@gocards.com if you have questions. Tell her Paulie sent ya.  Unfortunately, ol' Paulie will be unable to attend this year but I know several of our readers like to go or have kids involved in it...so, we'll look to you for updates. 

FIELD HOCKEY CAMPS


Justine Sowry's Skills Camps were held June 4-7 and June 11-14. Having watched these in the past, I can tell you that the participants are coached and assisted in improving their skills in the various positions that Field Hockey student-athletes perform in. "Coach" was an-ex goalkeeper and there are numerous current and ex-players at the ready to work with the campers and help them on working on their skills and strategy. 

Field Hockey still has an Elite Camp (July 1-2) and a Team Camp (July 20-22) ahead and the best and most promising will flock to Trager to enjoy the competition and knowledge available at these. 

Debbie Bell is the contact for Field Hockey camps and can be reached at (502)852-7616 for further information. 

WOMEN'S SOCCER


Karen Ferguson Dayes and the UofL women's soccer program carries on an ambitious summer camp schedule that offers quality instructions and several different facets of skills levels. They get underway today (June 18th.) with their Future Cardinals Camp. This camp focuses on mastering the rudimentary skills that make up the game of soccer. It's a five-day camp (June 18-22) and, although the registration is closed for this particular camp, information about future summer camps is available at the www.gocards.com website or from director of operations Jing Hughley. jing@gocards.com 

In past years, this camp has taken place at the practice field at the corner of Floyd and Warnock, across from McDonald's 

Other summer camps this year for WSOC include another Future Cardinals Camp from July 16-20th and a Summer Elite Camp on July 22nd. 

VOLLEYBALL


Get ready for a very busy July of camps hosted by UofL Volleyball, Dani Busboom Kelly and her staff. The first one is the High School Elite Skills Camp that begins July 5th and runs through the 7th. 

It's the first of four in July and following it...there is a Libero Camp (July 9th), Setting/Hitting Camp (July 10th), Serving Camp (July 10th) and High School Team Camp (July 11-13th). It's a busy summer for the Serve and Kill Cards...Volleyball has already had four camps this summer! 

These will be held at Cardinal Arena (in the S.A.C. building) and also at the S.R.C.  

Sarah Petkovic is the contact for these and available at sarah@gocards.com for questions and information. 


LACROSSE did not have any information available on camps, which is understandable due to....a new coach.SOFTBALL has cancelled all camps... a search for a coach, of course, is going on.

I found the Go Cards.com website a great source for information on these and, if you are interested in learning more about these camps, I'd suggest a visit there first...Other sports have camps as well. 

I wish there had been camps like this available when I was a kid growing up. They are excellent opportunities to improve your skills and knowledge in your sport and (who knows)...maybe you'll catch the eye "of a certain someone" and parlay that into a college chance to perform!!!!

There may not be conference contests, weekly pressers, stat releases or results to analyze and discuss on Floyd St. right now...but there IS still plenty of activity. The future Cardinals in many sports are getting a good long look at the facilities, staffs and workings of their sport of participation. The coaches and staff are doing some looking as well...making notes and getting a glimpse into the future. 

Good morning campers! Rise and shine...it's "go" time !!!


paulie
xxxxx