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Sunday, December 17, 2023

WBB Falls to UConn 86-62 - Sunday Cardinal Couple

Basketball Falls to UConn

There were several storylines in this contest between two good, and at least based on various polls, very evenly matched teams.  UConn has been injury plauged, seemingly for several years now, and thus has some question over who will be playing game to game.  UofL is still putting their team identity together with so many transfers, though the overall contours are starting to be seen.

UConn takes the overall victory 86-62, and the second half went about as you'd expect from that score.  The first half, however, remained pretty close, with only a one point lead for the Husky's after the 1st quarter (28-27), and four points at half (46-42).  Also looking at that score, it seems both teams came out of the before-game locker room trying the no-defense strategy, and it sure made for an exciting game.  But with good coaching, and for the Jeff and Geno show, you knew you were going to see good in-game coaching, the no-defense strategy won't last.

And, yes, the numbers back it up.  The Cards shot 73% from the field and 50% beyond the arc in the 1st, but mostly those numbers tumbled from there.  41% from the field and 25% from the arc in the 2nd, 20% and 0% in the 3rd, and 29% and 20% in the 4th.  UConn's numbers followed a similar, though not quite as steep, decline.  Neither team made a successful three point shot in the the 3rd quarter.

Kiki Jefferson lead the Cards with 19 points, along with five assists, three steals, and an block.  Sydney Taylor and Olivia Cochran joined her in double digit scoring with 13 and 12 respectively.  Chalk up a trio of assists for Taylor, and a trio of steals for O along with a pair of blocks.

Subjectively, Paige Bueckers is back.  After what I'm sure felt like a decade to her, she is back playing and it's as if she never left.   And stop me if you've heard this one before, Aaliyah Edwards is pretty good, ya know?  Despite being in a less competitive conference, Geno continues to find a way to attract good players and be competitive on a national level.  Part of that is scheduling good teams out-of-conference, teams like Louisville, to be that competitive, iron sharpens iron, material, because they're not going to find a whole lot of iron to sharpen themselves on in the Big East.

Louisville is starting to figure out who they are, and was able to play competitively for 20 minutes, but that's just not enough.  The drop off in the 2nd half was scary, and they're going to have to find a way to dig in a play a consistent 40 minutes of good basketball.

The Cards will bring another set of Huskies, from Washington, into the KFC Yum! Center Wednesday night for a 7pm tip on ACC Network.

FRED Report

Let me introduce you to Fred Baker.
Baker has been a major figure in
developing many of the standards
upon which the Internet is built.
He has worked with an alphabet
soup of standard's setting bodies
including the IETF (Internet
Engineering Task Force - who define
most of the standards that define
the Internet). He has also worked with
The Internet Society, the FCC, ITU-T,
and NIST. He has co-authored or edited
over 50 RFCs (the standards documents
of the IETF).
photo by Вени Марковски (Veni
Markovski) via Wikipedia

OK, let's get this over with:

F - Free throws.  The Cards have been a pretty good free throw shooting team this year, earning a bunch of "F"s so far, but they won't add to the collection today.  66.7% from the charity stripe isn't enough for a letter.

R - Rebounding.  29 rebounds for the Cards, which is a pretty good number, particularly with the score-fest that was the first quarter, but UConn clocked in with 33.  I'm on the edge on this one, despite the overall number, as 11 of UofL's boards were on the offensive end, and only five of UConn's were.  I do weigh offensive rebounds a bit higher, and I'd like to at least award a letter today, so we'll go with the lowercase R for the offensive boards.

E - Execution/Effort.  13 assists for the Cards vs 22 for UConn...well that's not a great start.  41% field goal shooting, and 25% from three isn't terrible, but it's not great, and obviously fell short of UConn's numbers.  And with 20 fouls to UConn's 15, with UofL's top three scorers all finishing in distinct foul trouble with four apiece.  I just don't think I can award an E for this.  Maybe if we were only judging the first half...

D - Defense. Steals and Turnovers are just about even between the two teams, 12 steals each, Cards with one less turnover, 19.  UConn got 7 blocks to UofL's 3.  Again, I just don't see how I can come up with a letter on this one either.

So, - r - -.  That's not pretty, is it?

They Said It:

Jeff Walz spent a lengthy time talking to the media after this one:   LINK 

Geno postgame

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

(From the early days...Jared was out taking a "selfie")

Four on the floor, as Paulie put it, for the podcast yesterday, with Case sneaking in just under the wire to get on the call to start the show.

Plenty of basketball chatter, and a wrap-up of the Volleyball season.

You can listen at:


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