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Monday, November 5, 2018

News on Volleyball, Field Hockey, Women's Soccer and Women's Basketball -- MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


In their second straight game without the services of Melanie McHenry, Louisville Volleyball suffered a four set loss to FSU Sunday in Cardinal Arena 25-27, 16-25, 25-21, 23-25. The Speedway, IN. junior appeared to have damaged a knee in warm-ups, according to witness, including our own Jeff McAdams and Jared Anderson, and was helped off the court...unable to put any weight on her leg. She was kept in the training room for the match.

No official word on the extent of McHenry's injury yet by UofL Volleyball. 

Without her, in the  "next one up" philosophy, freshman Claire Chaussee and senior Amanda Green tried to replace McHenry and recorded a total of 38 kills, but the Cards could not overcome the powerful net double-blocks by the Noles nor the 28 kills from Payton Caffrey. FSU hit .304 for the match...the Cards produced a .224 average and had 25 errors, compared to FSU's 15. 

The Cards had their chances. They engaged FSU in an "extra set action" in the first game before falling 27-25. UofL rallied back from an early 5-1 deficit to hang within two against Florida State but could not catch and pass the Noles.

Louisville fell victim to the strong FSU attack in set two, falling behind 4-0 early. Unlike the first game, the Cards could not roar back into contention and hit only .172 in the set.

After the break, the Cards came out renewed and took the fight to the visitors. The Cards jumped out to a 5-2 advantage, weathered a Florida State run that cut the advantage to 11-10 and got eight kills from Green to win the third set by four at 25-21. 

Louisville looked to be in position to even the match at 2-2 with a spirited effort that had the squads tied at 15-15. The Noles took control from there, though, and went on a 6-1 run that Louisville could not overcome. UofL made it close, climbing to within one at the end, but FSU took game, set and match 25-23.

The loss of McHenry had to play havoc with the Cards emotionally and mentally. McHenry, who is the Cards attack leader on the season with 311 kills, has 56 more than her closest competition, Green, who has 255. The play of Chaussee, Green and freshman Piper Roe off the bench was encouraging, but, in the was not enough to bring the Cards a victory over FSU, who takes over second place in the ACC standings with a 16-8, 12-2 record. Louisville is 2-3 in their last five matches. 

Dani Busboom Kelly's Cards (18-7, 11-3) return to action on Friday when they travel to Chestnut Hill, MA to face the Boston College Eagles.

(Today's Volleyball photos are from Jared Anderson. We totally appreciate his great work day-in and day-out. Did you know he does photo shoots for special occasions? Shoot him a text at @mrandersonjared if you'd like more information...or go check out his website at: )


As I watched the NCAA Field Hockey Tournament Selection Show on last night, a growing sense of dread and anxiety overtook me as the pairings were announced. And, as the field of 20 was revealed, the Cards never heard their name called in the pairings. 

I question several things.

First, why 18 schools? Couldn't a more reasonable number of 24 or even 32 be selected? With 10 automatic conference qualifiers included in the mix, that leaves eight "at-large" school berths.

Next, the ACC got a total of just four schools (out of the seven that participate in ACC Field Hockey) in the tournament. #1 seeded UNC was a "lock", with the ACC titles. Duke (who beat the Cards in the regular season) got in. I can see Wake Forest getting inclusion as well...they knocked the Cards out of the ACC Tournament, made it to the ACC Tournament Championship game and beat Louisville in the regular season as well. But, Virginia? Over the Cards? Wow...just, wow. 

The Cards defeated Virginia at Charlottesville 2-0 during the regular season.

The Cavs were 9-9 on the season and 2-4 in ACC Conference play. They were swooped by UNC 5-1 in the ACC Field Hockey Championship quarters. Still, they get the nod as the fourth ACC school. Someone explain this to me. 

It's non-nonsensical, surprising and very disappointing. Yes, Virginia did down Maryland late in the season and they did advance one game further than the Cards in the ACC Tournament but taking 9-9 over 12-6 is purely b.s. 

Against the eight schools who got the "at large" bids...the Cards were 1-2, all conference foes, with losses to Duke and Wake Forest and a win over Virginia. The other "at-large" ...Iowa, Michigan, Penn State, Rutgers (all BIG 10 schools) and Princeton did not appear on the Cards schedule. 

The NCAA committee seemed to view the Big 10 a stronger conference than the ACC this season, it would appear. In addition to the four "at-large" schools, Maryland will appear in the tournament as the automatic qualifier. 5-4. That's questionable, also. 

This isn't "sour grapes", mind you. This incredulous decision is just puzzling, head scratching and another slap to Louisville Athletics by the villains who run the NCAA in Indianapolis. You're leaving the best goalkeeper in the world out of the tournament? Yeah, that's a great idea.  

One could point to the Cards less than spectacular close-out of the season. They did lose at Albany (who is the America East Conference automatic qualifier) before beating Kent State to close out the season. Then, the a #3 seed to #6 seed Wake in the ACC Tournament.

But, know this. Virginia got the Cards spot...with a worse record overall and in conference and a regular season loss to Louisville. Explain that to me. 

Oh, by the way, the NCAA Field Hockey DI Championships will be held in Louisville again this year. (Nov 16-18) Great idea, decision committee...excluding the host school from a chance of getting there and potentially boosting the attendance.  


The Louisville women's soccer team will find out if they are NCAA bound at 4:30 today when the Selection Show and brackets appear at 

The Cards have a strong resume with a 12-6, 6-4 record. They are receiving votes in the weekly top 25 rankings and  are #47 in the RPI rankings. 64 teams (a reasonable number) receive invites to the tournament. 

Louisville lost their final two games of the year (to Virginia Tech and Virginia) and finished in a tie for fifth place (with Clemson) in the final ACC standings. 

We think the Cards are "in" here at Cardinal Couple, but, knowing the NCAA...anything is possible and they could strike another blow to Louisville Athletics again this afternoon. 


The Louisville WBB squad starts the regular season Tuesday night in Bowling Green, KY against WKU. We'll have a full preview of that in the Tuesday Cardinal Couple. For now, know that it's being shown on ESPN Plus, which means you gotta buy a subscription to watch it. We recommend listening to the radio all of Nick Curran and A.J. on 790 AM. WKRD. Or driving to Bowling Green. It's not that far away, you know. 

Also, check out Asia Durr's website! Go to:

You're going to like it. It's ultra cool, just like the player. 


We're not going to belabor the loss to Clemson that much. Regular reader Curtis Franklin made the journey and was treated like a king by another regular reader (Arthur) for the tailgating and such.

Tough times, yes....for the Footballin'  Cards. Lots of questions about coaching, players and the like. None to be settled until after the season, but, with Syracuse, NC State and Kentucky has to wonder how competitive any of these last three will be?

Football has endured tough times before here at Louisville. I remember the days when you could stop at a local "convenience" store and just pick up passes that would get you in free to home games. When the athletic department considered dropping out of DI Football. The Cooper and Kragthorpe years. 

Hang in there, Cardinal Football fans. I couldn't resist putting the picture here. 


I'm not going to take a lot of time today with our daily requests for you to help us out in this November Donation month.

I'm just going to lay it out there.

I've dug deeply into our own pockets (me and Sonya) for the last 12 years to make Cardinal Couple financially solvent as a non-profit. I am not a rich guy. I was encouraged by our 2018 donation results. I spent less out-of-pocket in 2018 than any previous year. I hope for the best this drive. 

I appreciate all the support and sponsors we've received over the past 12 years. I am not going to further damage my financial status in 2019, though. I'm retired. Money is tight. Sonya wants to retire, also. She and I are getting old, and some days, quite tired. You tell us, are me and the boys doing something here that you want to see continue? 

I would appreciate your help for the site...if you believe we are worthy.

Send checks to: 

Cardinal Couple
PO Box 91521
Louisville, KY   40291

To donate via  PAY-PAL:  CLICK HERE




  1. That's great FB pic, Paulie.

    Stunned like you that FH didn't get in.

    Got no words.

    Curtis "Thinks the NCAA is stupid" Franklin

  2. Oh, and I am gladly and proudly sending my check today, Paulie.

    I couldn't imagine not having this site to read daily. You guys are the heart and soul of women's sports at UofL and I appreciate ALL you, Case Jeff, Jared and Sonya do. Love the guests you bring on the radio and I hope everyone else does, too.

    Readers, send the Cardinal Couple crew a donation. They are always here for you. Be there for them.

    Curtis "Money where mouth is" Franklin

    1. Thank you, Curtis!

      We couldn't imagine not having your comments to read daily.


  3. Hey, ho! Dave O here!

    I, too, am utterly surprised by the NCAA Field Hockey's decision to exclude Louisville from the NCAA Tournament. I seem to remember about 80 schools that participate in DI Field Hockey. So, the ratio is about 4-1 in teams of schools participating to schools receiving bids.

    For comparison sake: The NCAA has 335 schools playing DI women's basketball. And 64 get bids to the tournament, or, roughly 19%.

    It would be quite easy to create a 28 team tournament. Have "play-in" games, (2) per region, to see who advances to the round of sixteen and seed the winners of these "play-in" games against the #1 and #2 seeds in each of the four brackets. It's not rocket science, planners. Call me, if you need me to walk you through it. We could do lunch and maybe a round of golf (at your expense, of course).

    The NCAA, in their unspectacular vision, Three Stooges approach to formatting and incredible lack of knowledge about how to re-grow a sport that is losing ground to lacrosse -- still prefers to stick their collective "heads in the sand" and shout out "All is well!".

    Incompetency, coupled with archaic governing committee members and apathetic organizational stuffed shirts makes for very questionable "bedfellows".

    In the terms of overused axioms, with an addendum, it's time for the NCAA Field Hockey gurus to "take a long walk off a short pier". We can only hope that there are sharks circling in the water at the end of the walk.

    -- Until we meet again --

    Dave O.

    1. Ding, ding, ding, ding! We have a winner for comment of the day!



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