BETHANY RUSS GOAL IN O.T. SENDS CARDS PAST MIAMI
In cool and damp conditions and for the second straight contest, the Louisville Field Hockey squad found themselves faced with overtime in their Sunday contest at Trager against Miami (OH). This match had been a scoreless affair, much like the Friday tilt with Duke, until the RedHawks capitalized on a penalty corner with no time left in the first half.
Louisville drew even with about eight minutes gone in the final half. Meche Pastor sent a baseline shot net-ward that Madison Walsh corralled and put past the RedHawks goalkeeper. For Madison, it was her first score of the season.
Miami was relentless on the attack, though, and with about 12 minutes of action remaining, drew a couple of penalty corners. The RedHawks found success on the second corner and Leonor Berlie got her second score of the contest to put Miami in the lead.
As the end of regulation drew near, a succession of green and yellow penalty cards (four in all) started stacking up on the RedHawks and the ultimate came when Miami head coach Inako Puzo received a red card for comments and was ejected from the contest with 32 seconds remaining in regulation. Just a few seconds earlier, the Cards had earned a penalty corner and Bethany Russ got her first score of the contest to tie action at 2-2.
Miami nearly won it at the end of regulation when their leading scorer on the season -- Paula Portugal -- found herself in front of Cardinal goalkeeper Ayeshia McFerran with the ball. Her shot sailed high over the net, though -- the Cards had escaped the last ditch effort by the RedHawks and this bird battle was headed to overtime.
With the 7v7 format in overtime in place, Miami (OH) actually had just six players on the turf because of the late yellow card on attacker Noor Breedijk and Louisville used the player-up advantage to control action, ultimately getting a penalty corner chance just a minute-thirty into extra action, where Russ delivered again, her ninth goal of the season...this time on a pass from Alli Bitting to end the sudden-victory session.
More on Puzo...you could hear the Miami skipper's comments and complaints up in the press box and his continuous dissatisfaction and belittling of the officiating crew caught up with him. It's the first time I can remember a coach getting ejected from a field hockey contest that I've seen. He watched the remaining action through the fence on the McDonald's side of Trager. I did see him after the contest back on the field surrounded by his wife and children -- an unfortunate loss of control and decorum by him...earlier...which, although may have not cost the RedHawks the contest -- his assistants seemed in control of the situation out of the field -- but his unfortunate actions certainly didn't help the RedHawks chances.
Louisville hits the highway for their final three games of the regular season. The Cards will visit ACC foe Syracuse on Oct 21st, swing over to Albany on the 23rd and end up at Kent State on Oct. 28th.
Paulie caught up with Coach Sowry and the four seniors...Ayeshia McFerran, Maria Gomez, Taylor Stone and Katie Walsh...after the contest and you can hear those interviews below:
MIAMI POST GAME JUSTINE SOWRY
SENIORS AFTER 3-2 WIN OVER MIAMI
LORETTA KAKALA LEAVING LOUISVILLE WBB SQUAD
The tweets started surfacing Sunday and my voice mail, inbox and texts started piling up in an rapid fashion.
Redshirt freshman Loretta Kakala had made public via her Instagram account and Twitter feeds indicated that she was transferring from the University of Louisville women's basketball squad. Heading to Pacific (CA) University.
And the question came up.....why?
I guess we'll never really know. Indications seemed to lead to the stated desire to play closer to home and get a fresh start with the possibility of more playing time at school very close -- fifteen minutes -- to her home town of Manteca, CA.
Speculation developed after the Cards 2017-18 season what role she would play on the 2018-19 Cardinal WBB squad. Most figured she'd contribute a few minutes on the front line, with returnees Sam Fuehring, Kylee Shook and Bionca Dunham getting the majority of the minutes at power forward and center and incoming transfer Yacine Diop from Pitt definitely contributing there.
Reports from a source near the program indicated that her conditioning wasn't exactly going as planned but these reports were not confirmed by me and the announcement of her transfer on Sunday caught many Cardinal WBB fans by surprise. The bottom line is, as it is in most transfer situations, is that you want to do the right thing for the player and their student-athlete experience and if it's determined that the player might be more comfortable and receive more playing time elsewhere...then they should go pursue those desires and goals.
The 6'2" center played in four games in 2017 for the Cards...a total of 43 minutes (10.8 a game average). She totaled 12 points on 6 for 16 shooting and had 12 rebounds. She red-shirted after the fourth contest.
Pacific has a D-I women's basketball program and competes in the West Coast Conference. 10 conference members...maybe best known for Gonzaga, BYU and Pepperdine. The Tigers were 15-17 last season with a 7-11 conference mark and finished sixth in the conference.
So, "Retta"...we barely got to know you and wonder what might have become of your career at UofL but...as women's college basketball fans...certainly wish you good times, a great career and the best of luck at Pacific.
Transfers in. Transfers out. All an increasing part of the college basketball games these days. The bottom line analysis is that any college basketball roster is going to change throughout the year and those changes, whether they be injury, red-shirt or transfer...have to be dealt with in terms of what is best for the student-athlete and the team must move forward.