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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Five to remember

Jeff Walz applauds Sonja's OAKS selections...OK, not really, but I had to start the column somehow.

(Note: SONJA'S DERBY SELECTIONS will appear Friday instead of today. I'm taking an extra day to pour over the post positions and past performances since there are quite a few possible candidates for the bouquet of roses. I was very big on ESKENDREYA and ENDORSEMENT...but both have dropped out of the race)

Jeff Walz will be holding a team camp for girls' hoops players from June 18-20. Girls in grades 9-12 will have the opportunity to participate in 6 games over the three day event, play in a Final Four tournament and receive instructions from Jeff and coaching staff. Contact Becky Bonner at 502.852.8355. Cost is $160 for overnight and $110 for commuters.

While we are on the subject of Lady Cards basketball, the word is that high school star Shoni Schimmel will be announcing her college pick next Wednesday. Louisville is in the running for the talented Portland (OR) guard, along with UCLA and several others schools. Schimmel could turn out to be one of the best guards to play at UofL should she choose the Cards.

I've listed below five of my favorite guards to ever put on the red and black and work the ball for Louisville Women's basketball. They may not necessarily be the five best guards in the history of the school...but,'s my list and feel free to comment on your favorites. Angel is not on this list...she was a forward sent from heaven.

1)SARA NORD. The Jeffersonville, IN. point guard led Louisville in assists all four years she played for the Lady Cards. She could also lead the fast break and hurt you from outside if you left her unattended. Nord was a pretty decent softball player, too.

2)PATRIKA BARLOW. Another assist machine, the Barren County star swung a pretty mean softball bat in addition to leading the Cards in assists her final two years. "PB" played the game hard and had a smile as big as her game.

3)DEZ BYRD. The best is yet to come for the Cincinnati, OH point guard. Two strong years directing the offense for Jeff Walz were enough to show me that Dez is fearless, talented and knows the game. She's recovered from her knee injury and she'll have two more years to delight Cardinal fans with her fiery, take charge leadership on the court.

4)CONNIE NEAL. The Louisville, KY. shooter had one of the best releases and shots in Lady Cards history. When Connie was "on", she was automatic. A tireless defensive stopper as well, Neal was one of those blue collar, overtime and a half players that didn't have the words "tired","lazy" or "defeat" in her vocabulary.

5)KRISTEN MATTOX COX. The original "mad bomber"...Kristen could and would shoot from anywhere on the court and always believed that it was going thru the net. You didn't want to foul her, she has the highest free throw % in Lady Cards history. She was an early version of Angel McCoughtry...all over the court, involved in every aspect of the game. If the dictionary had a picture of "effort" next to the description...the photo would be hers.


Hats off to the Uofl baseball team for their dramatic 10-9 over Kentucky last night. What a crazy ninth inning! Louisville leads 6-4 going in to the final inning, the Cats put up 5 runs and Louisville counters with 4 to win. Paul called it "the best college baseball game I have ever seen." Over 4000 in attendance. MAKE SURE and check out the photos and commentary over at Cardinal Dominance and UofL Card Game.
Well done, Zach Wasserman!

Finally, special shoutouts to Shannon...who probably blew out an artery in the final frame (the "Irish mafia" says "top of the morning to ya!") and also to Charlie, who refused to let Paul sit next to him and Barbara. A wise move, Charlie...

Written by Sonja


  1. What is your opinion of our incoming 2010 Lady Cards class?

  2. I like this incoming class a lot. Charmaine Tay is a tough as nails point guard that will add speed and good shooting to the back of the best high school seniors.

    Antonita Slaughter, out of Christian Academy, an all over the court player that will help on the wing...or wherever Walz decides to use her.

    Sherrone Vails at 6'4" gives us height and rebound ability in the paint plus scoring.

    Polly Harrington is a talented forward, good at scoring under the hoop and has a great mid-range jumper plus rebounds well.

    HOOP GURLZ, a highly respected recruiting source, has this class ranked third behind Connecticut and Duke. We're in the top five with all the other sites I've seen that analyze incoming classes.

    The addition of Schimmel would only increase the value. Schimmel has the skills and game to come in here and start as a freshmen for the Lady Cards.

    These new players. plus getting Dez Byrd back from injury and Tia Gibbs back on the court after sitting out a year because of transfereing from Vandy and the returning Lady Cards suggest UofL will be a force in the Big East and on the national scene next year for years to come.



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