Louisville Unable to Handle Purdue; Fall 3-1
Playing in the "Lipscomb Tournament" in Nashville, Tennessee this weekend, Louisville Volleyball is getting their first taste of action outside of the L&N Federal Credit Union Arena. Unfortunately for the Cards, their road record this season started the same as their home record: a tough loss against a strong opponent. This time, Louisville was able to take a set off of Purdue, unlike the match against Florida, but it ultimately wasn't enough. The Cards held on to a tight lead and went in to extra points to win the first set 26-24, but the Boilermakers were overpowering for the remainder of the match, winning the next three sets to end it.
Louisville was primarily hampered by two factors: Purdue's blocking and Caitlyn Newton. Purdue finished with a listed 14 blocks, all assisted, showing that they were not just getting into the right position for blocks with one player, but that they had a full answer for Louisville on a large number of attack attempts. Comparatively, the Cards finished with only 6 blocks, 1 solo. Louisville also had three blocking errors, one more than Purdue. Louisville was just outperformed in that area.
The other deciding factor in the match was Newton and her 26 kills. Newton finished the match with just one less kill than Aiko Jones and Melanie McHenry combined, which is never going to be a recipe for success. She finished with 8 errors, the same number as McHenry, and she wasn't the only player with double digit kills on the Boilermaker squad. All in all, Purdue finished the match with a .261 hitting percentage, while Louisville finished at just .141. With the Boilermakers earning a point on more than one out of every four attack attempts, Louisville just could not keep up.
As for the match, Louisville took a pretty healthy lead in the first set, looking like they might be in for a good day. Purdue brought it back late, forcing the extra points before a Purdue error ended the set. Louisville won the first set 26-24. The second set was Purdue's chance to run away. The Boilermakers took a big lead before Louisville was able to come back to within three at 14-17. That would be the end of that threat, though, as Purdue went on to finish the set 16-25. The final two sets of the match were big battles throughout, and Louisville looked to be in line to make it 2-1, but the Boilermakers went on a run to take the set 21-25. Purdue went on to win the final set 18-25 and that was that.
Purdue was ranked 23rd in the country entering yesterday's match, and Louisville could have really used the win to boost their confidence and their own ranking. However, they'll still have one more match this weekend to build a bit more road mojo before they get a week off to prepare for Kentucky. The Cards will take on the Musketeers of Xavier today at 4PM in a match that has no live video listed. Tune in to Jeff's article tomorrow for more on the Cards.
Cardinal Couple Radio Hour
As Jared mentioned yesterday, we'll be thin in studio today as Jeff and I man the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour on our own while Paulie and Jared head south for football. Of course, we'll have plenty to talk about as Louisville has had a busy week in women's athletics. Tune in at 11AM for breakdowns of field hockey, soccer, and volleyball as well as looks ahead to the upcoming matches this week. The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour is brought to you thanks to WCHQ FM, which you can find at 100.9 FM, wchqfm.com, the WCHQ App, or watch us online at Facebook Live.
Until next time, Go Cards!