A foursome of Louisville women's sports are in action today.
Going in chronological order of start times here, the Women's Golf team will be the first in action today. They played their first round yesterday in Norman, OK in the Schooner Classic.
The armchair weather geek in me always thinks of Norman, OK as the home of the National Severe Storm Laboratories, which is the organization within the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administraion) that issues National Weather Service severe thunderstorm and tornado watch boxes.
Hopefully the weather will remain clear and pleasant out on the links in Oklahoma for the duration of this event. We haven't gotten any meaningful results so far, so nothing much to report on here, but we don't want to not give the golf squad their fair due.
Softball kicks off their fall schedule today. Softball is, of course, a spring sport so this is exhibition play.
They'll start it off with that University just down the road. No, not the blue ones, the scarlet and silver ones that are much closer. Yes, Bellarmine pretty much drives up Eastern Parkway to visit Ulmer Stadium with a noon start.
Don't worry, we'll get to the kitties, the fall schedule includes home and home scheduling with them with first leg being here in Louisville on October 9th, and in Lexington on October 29th.
Fall play for softball is a lot of fun to catch. Since it's exhibition, it's a bit lighter of an experience, but it's also a time to catch up with the development of the squad and get a first look at what the team should look like in the spring.
For Louisville, the big questions are going to be how are various players that were out with injuries in the spring recovering. We're looking for the return of Gabby Holloway in the pitching circle. We'll also be looking to see if Easton Lotus is back in playing shape as she was an infielder that showed a lot of promise early in the season last year before going down with an injury.
At 2pm, the women's soccer squad is going to try to bounce back from a 5-1 loss to 7th ranked Florida State Thursday, though it's going to be a tall order as the next opponent is 2nd ranked Virginia.
This is the middle outing of a three game road trip that will finish up at Pitt next week.
ACC Network Extra has the coverage on the pitch from Charlottesville. If you're not a fan of soccer, tune in just to hear the announcers say our goalkeeper's last name. Because Pratapas is fun to say. (pruh-TOP-us). I've also found it interesting to see where Ravin Alexander and Karsyn Cherry are lining up. Both are listed as forwards on the roster, but Alexander was playing in defense for much of the start of the season. In the last game against FSU, Alexander was in the forward position, with Cherry in defense. Both are a lot of fun to watch on the ball and are very offensively oriented, so lets see where they go.
Volleyball is the last team to get in action today. This match is part of ESPN's very recent infatuation...maybe experimental, with volleyball. After what was clearly an experiment for the four letter network of moving the Louisville vs Kentucky match up to the flagship network, ESPN was clearly happy with the results with over 300,000 watching that match on a Wednesday night.
As a result, quite a few other volleyball matches have been kicked upstairs to the flagship channel beginning with two today. The double-header will get underway with 11th ranked Purdue vs unranked Iowa at 1pm EDT (Purdue coming off of an mild upset over 8th ranked Minnesota). 2nd ranked Louisville vs unranked FSU will get underway at 3pm. So let's hope for a three setter, or a quick four, by Purdue and Iowa.
Lets hope, again, for some good viewership numbers on ESPN for these two matches to help grow the game of volleyball. It's a bit of a compliment that ESPN is picking volleyball in this ongoing experiment to put against NFL programming on FOX and CBS. No one expects volleyball to get more viewers than NFL, but it's a case of not needing to outrun the bear, just outrun the other people running from the bear. If ESPN can get the top viewership with volleyball behind NFL coverage, I suspect they'll be quite happy.
Florida State swept Notre Dame; 25-20, 25-18, 25-17 and is now 9-3 on the season. Their losses are not bad losses, really. With two coming to 15th ranked Florida, and 17th ranked Creighton. The third loss is the worst loss, dropping a four set match to Cincinnati in Cincy. The best win on FSU's schedule right now is probably a 3-1 decision over Dayton. Notre Dame is maybe the next best, but so far the Irish are sub-.500 on the season, so it looks like another season of strugglebus in South Bend.
The biggest offensive threats for the Seminoles are Audrey Koenig and Emily Ryan. Over the past few years we've gotten used to hearing Emma Clothier name called for FSU, and she's doing well, but is only 3rd on the kills list for the team.
I would typically expect a little stiffer competition from FSU than from Miami, but that has been a bit less consistent in the past couple of seasons. And based on what we saw in sets two and three in Coral Gables, lets hope not, or hope that this Louisville team comes out with their top level play.
Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast
And finally, after crazy conflicting schedules last week, the CCRHP was back on the air this week. Case, Paulie, and myself got together to talk about the couple of weeks in Louisville women's sports. We spent quite a bit of time on volleyball, including some discussion of the dynamics referenced above with ESPN scheduling it opposite the NFL. We also covered soccer and field hockey and just generally had a good time as we always do.
Check it out at anchor.fm at: https://anchor.fm/cardinal-couple/episodes/Volleyball-and-Field-Hockey-Continue-Winning-Ways-e1oa9la or your favorite podcast directory.