We report on the joy and excitement of UofL women's sports here. Thanks for checking us out! Click the picture of Louie to hear the latest Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast!!

Saturday, October 29, 2022

Field Hockey Drops Home Finale; Volleyball Sweeps -- SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Cards Fall to BC 4-1

Louisville field hockey hosted their regular season finale hoping to claw back some momentum before heading to Durham for the ACC Tournament next week. The plan got off to a good start, with Aimee Plumb giving the Cards the go-ahead goal just five minutes into the game. Unfortunately, the good vibes wouldn't last past the first quarter. After the break, Boston College tied the game and took the lead in the first five minutes of the quarter. When they came out of the locker room after halftime, BC pounced again, making it 3-1 two minutes into the second half. A fourth goal with five to go in the game was icing on the cake for the Eagles, and Louisville saw their third loss in as many games to close out the season.

Louisville outshot BC 14-8 in yesterday's game, but they were even in shots on target at seven. Sasha Elliott came back down to earth after an unbelievable season, posting just three saves against four goals, but hopefully she was just due for a less than outstanding game and she can put it behind her. Of BC's four goals, only one came on a penalty corner, an uncommon occurrence against what has been a stout Louisville defense this season.

The Cards offense didn't do quite as much to pull their weight as the defense would hope either. Just a 50% shot ratio is not a recipe for success, especially considering that the team had more penalty corner attempts than they did shots on goal. Louisville was 0-8 on corners in yesterday's game. Boston College was 1-1. The offense was fairly well distributed for the Cards, with five players taking shots, but only Aimee Plumb and Mattie Tabor put multiple shots on goal. To Boston College's credit, they had done their homework. Julie Kouijzer took three shots. As you might expect, they all came on corners. The Eagles were expecting it, too. All three of Kouijzer's shots were blocked by defenders.

You'll notice I'm not going line-by-line on yesterday's game like I do for many others. The truth is that it wasn't a very good performance all-around. Jared politely left a postgame interview with Coach Sowry off the table as she wasn't in much mood to talk about it. Louisville came in to yesterday's game with a chance to improve their seeding for the ACC tournament with a win over BC, and they didn't do it. Louisville takes the six seed (they have the tiebreaker over Duke), and they'll play either Syracuse or Virginia based on tiebreaker. We talked a bit last week about how you might want to be the sixth seed and make a run in the ACC tournament rather than be the five seed and draw UNC in the second game. 

My stance was, and is, that a loss to BC (who is now just 8-9 overall) hurts more than a pair of wins over Syracuse and Wake would help when it comes to NCAA seeding. After the clunker at Cornell on Sunday, Louisville may find themselves on the outside looking in come selection time. We'll all have to wait and see. The ACC tournament will air in full on ACC Network starting at 1 PM on Tuesday. Which games will be played in which slots are not finalized yet, but the quarterfinals are at 1, 3:30, and 6. 

Cards Sweep Duke at Home

After the tough loss against Pittsburgh on Sunday, Louisville recovered their busy week by taking care of business with sweeps of both Notre Dame and Duke. The two teams have seven wins combined in conference, so struggling with either would not be ideal. As it was, the Cards sat ND down against in front of a record crowd and returned to L&N Federal Credit Union Arena looking like they'd do just about the same thing to Duke.

Louisville opened with a 25-12 set win, posting a 0.529 hitting percentage with just one error. They held Duke negative at -0.083, and the romp looked as though it might be on. In that set, Louisville took a 7-1 lead and, after a bit of trading, extended it to 24-9. The Cards had two blocks and three aces to go along with their ten kills, but also benefitted from two service errors and a handling error by Duke. The Blue Devils looked all out of sorts, and Louisville was firing on all cylinders.

Right up until they weren't. The Cards took another 6-1 lead in the second, and they would later stretch that to 19-11, but their 25-20 set victory was much less convincing. It may have had something to do with the fact that they had 9 errors, only 9x their average per set. Duke had fewer errors in the second set, but Louisville still managed to outhit them 0.063-0.000. What I'm getting at here is that the second set of last night's match was not the pinnacle of volleyball performance. Despite the poor hitting, Louisville's win was never really in doubt, as the 19-11 lead was trimmed only to 20-16 before trades effectively closed the set.

The third set was the nail-biter, with both teams hitting in the 0.160s. Louisville cleaned up their errors, cutting them to just four, but Duke found more gaps than anyone had all match, picking up a match leading 12 kills in the final set. Louisville didn't have the benefit of a big run in the set and actually played from behind for most of the race to ten. The Cards took the lead at 9-8 following a service error and an attack error, but they wouldn't take the lead for good until the same sequence gave them a 12-10 advantage. After a Duke kill, Louisville won three straight points to take a 15-11 lead that they wouldn't yield. The Blue Devils pulled to within two on multiple occasions through the rest of the set, but Louisville's resolve (and their own struggles) kept the Cards out front. After Cara Cresse committed an error to give Duke hope on Louisville's first match point attempt, she made up for it by combining on a block with Raquel Lazaro to win it.

If you didn't know better, you would have thought some practical joke moved the service line in the third set, as the two teams combined for 13 service errors in the final frame. Five of Louisville's nine errors came in that set, while Duke committed 14 overall. Louisville was vastly superior at the line for the entire match, finishing with six aces to Duke's three for a net advantage of eight points in the service game. Louisville's blocking wasn't as dominant in this one as we've seen in the past, with Louisville winning just 8-7. The impact on Louisville was large, as seven blocks represented half of the errors they committed, whereas Duke committed 24 errors on the evening. Louisville's blocking defense usually has that effect on teams, forcing more errors than the stat sheet recognizes as blocks, but Duke also just isn't very good. 

Aiko Jones led the team in kills for the first time in awhile last night, picking up seven. She committed five errors, but her role leads to more errors than others. More concerning was her carrying a third of the team's service errors, but it was a good match for her overall as she added an ace and 1.5 blocks. Claire Chaussee and Amaya Tillman, as you might expect, were tied for second at six kills apiece. Nena Mbonu continued to carve a role with four kills, but the big surprise came from Lazaro. She finished with five kills on seven attempts while picking up 17 of Louisville's 23 assists. Adding four block assists and seven digs, it remains obvious that Lazaro is a star.

Speaking of stars, Anna DeBeer returned to the floor last night... kind of. DeBeer was fully dressed and participated in warm-ups last night before coming out of the locker room in street clothes ahead of the match start. This was apparently planned, and not a setback during warmups. It's good to know that DeBeer is close to returning as the season gets ready to hit the home stretch. The Cards have a week off before beginning their final third of the conference season. After the three match week culminating with Duke last night, Louisville will have tomorrow off. The Cards will welcome in the two state schools of North Carolina next weekend in their penultimate home stand.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

With another non-noon kickoff for Louisville football, we'll have a robust crew in house for the show this week. While there are some downers to talk about, we'll keep the optimism up as we discuss the joy and excitement of Louisville women's athletics. Maybe if we talk nicely enough about him, Coach Walz will let us go down the new slide at the basketball practice facility. As always, you can check out the live stream of the show by going to the Cardinal Couple YouTube page and clicking on the live video. Jeff usually creates that about an hour before the show, which officially starts at 11 AM Eastern. If the live time doesn't work for you, there are plenty of playback options, so be sure to check out whichever is best for you!

Cardinal Couple YouTube: Link
Anchor (podcast host): Link
Apple Podcasts: Link
Google Podcasts: Link
Overcast (free account required): Link
Pocket Casts (free account and app required): Link
RadioPublic: Link
Spotify: Link

Until next time, Go Cards!



  1. What is the deal with this Walz slide ? It's nice to know little sister isn't taking WBB very seriously and UK is. UofL's slide begins.

    Cats, Cats, Cats

    1. Sorry, not sorry, but this will be the dumbest comment I read on social media today🤣🤣🤣

    2. and its only 11am haha

  2. Well, good morning to you too, UK fan. See you Dec 11 at Rupp. Go Cards!


  3. We do now know that Field Hockey will play Virginia in the opening round of the ACC Field Hockey Tournament at 6 p.m. in the quarters.

    As for Cats Cats Cats... I can only assume the intelligence of the commenter is equal to the chances and success of UK WBB to become relevant in the national picture. Nothing there and no hopes of something coming.

    Shooo, lil kittie...shooo. Our coach may slide, but your WBB program has been on a slide for numerous years now.


    1. great response paulie the kitties are nervous no doubt now that crying rhyne is gone.


Please leave your comments here. We ask you be respectful of other posts, no matter how ridiculous they may seem to you. After all, it is CARDINAL COUPLE.

Any attempts to advertise a product or other website here in the comments section without the prior consent of CARDINAL COUPLE will result in a bill rendered for advertising services and possible legal action. We're serious. No more bots.

Now, have your take...