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Monday, November 7, 2011

Fields a possible 2012 recruit...Volleyball sweeps Marquette...Soccer falls to WVU


-Jenny reports on Nirra Fields

-Volleyball sweeps Golden Eagles

-Women's soccer drops 2-0 decision to WVU

(Cardinal Couple's Jenny O' Bryan fills us in on Nirra Fields)

As a fan who follows recruiting news, sure...I have heard of her. Hoopgurlz ranked her 11th in the country in the class of 2012 and third at guard. She is a 5-star guard, who hails from Quebec. She has international experience playing for the Canadian U16, U17 and U19 teams.

Most recently, she was noted as the "hottest recruit out of Ohio", when she was playing at South Euclid Regina High School in the Cleveland suburbs. The school recently shut down and Nirra found herself moving across the country with her guardian and LA Lakers coach Mike Brown to California and Mater Dei High School. Mater Dei is in Santa Ana, California...where 2011 top recruit and UConn Husky Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis attended school and 2012 #6 recruit Jordan Adams (committed-USC) is a senior. Mater Dei has won the girl's national championship title the past two years. Some big time ballers come out of Mater Dei.

Definitely heard of Nirra Fields. 

I have not, though, heard her name mentioned in the same sentence as UofL women's basketball until this past week. That's right! Louisville is one of her top five schools. She, at some point this fall, might make an official visit to Louisville. An official visit is paid for by the school and can only be taken in the fall of an athlete's senior year. An athlete can take as many as five official visits. An official visit obviously means there is interest by both the school and the athlete.

Fields a Bria Smith clone?
I am very pleasantly surprised by the recent revelation that Louisville is in the running for this superb athlete. Surprised...not because Coach Walz is attracting the attention of top caliber athletes...but surprised because I thought 2012 recruiting was over for Louisville.

Google Nirra Fields. You'll find a wealth of information.

Nirra is defined by Hoopgurlz as an explosive, first step player. Great on-the-ball defender. Penetrates and attacks the basket. Sound familiar? (A Bria Smith likeness is what I am thinking.) Her quickness allows her to get by any defender and she has the bounce to elevate over long defenders. It is noted her areas to work on are staying on defense when who she's guarding doesn't have the ball and increasing the range of her shot. She is a dribble drive, penetrating type of shooter. Think (again) Bria Smith. Charmaine Tay. Sounds exactly like the kind of kid that fits into a Jeff Walz system.

Nirra is deciding between Louisville, Oklahoma, Kentucky, UCLA and Miami (FLA). With the early signing period starting on Nov. 9th. and ending on Nov. 16th....and Nirra stating she will sign in the early period, looks like it won't be long until we know about her future plans.

(Great report by Jenny! Get this one on campus and in the jersey, Coach Walz! )


Cardinal Volleyball got 18 kills from Lola Arslanbekova yesterday in the KFC YUM! Center...leading Louisville to a 25-22, 25-19, 25-18 of previously conference unbeaten Marquette. Also credit the hard work of Taylor Brauneis with 33 assists and 13 digs for the Cards.

"I know it doesn't show up on the stats so much but Taylor Brauneis' defense helped us tremendously. We worked so hard this week and it was great to see her execute. She had at least two momentum changers when they were closing in on us." -Anne Kordes, UofL head volleyball coach.

Brauneis steps up big for Cards!
The Cards jumped out early in game one and led 5-1. That became 11-7 and eventually 21-15 before Marquette rallied to make it 22-19. The Cards got big kills from Brooke Mattingly and Lola to finish off the Golden Eagles and win the first by three.

Louisville once again jumped out to the early lead in game two but Marquette rallied to lead 8-7. Louisville re-focused and ran off the next eight points to put it out of reach, though. The Cards led 20-13 before taking the second game by six points.

After the break, Louisville roared out to a 10-4 early advantage and the Golden Eagles never seriously challenged after that...the Cards winning by seven.

With the win, Louisville goes to the top of the BIG EAST standings at 11-1 and 19-7 overall. Marquette is now 10-2. The Cards take to the road for the final two games of the regular season...needing one to clinch the regular season title. They face Villanova Friday and Georgetown Sunday.


WVU holds Exeter scoreless
Tough match on the pitch for Louisville women's soccer yesterday, losing to the WVU Mountaineers in the final game of the BIG EAST Tournament 2-0. Cards had several chances to net points, especially late in the second half, but couldn't penetrate the strong goal play of WVU's defense. Blake Miller and Frances Silva scored for the Eers...who get the automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament. It's the third year in a row WVU has taken the title.

Key to the WVU win was shutting down BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year...Louisville's Christine Exeter.  

The field of 64 for the NCAA Tournament will be announced Monday at 4:30 p.m. Most figure Louisville should make the tournament easily...with a strong showing in the BIG EAST regular season and by advancing to the finals of the conference tournament.

Congratulations to Christine Exeter, Katie McDonald, Jennifer Jones and Chelsea Hunter....named to the BIG EAST All-Tournament team. Exeter and Hunter are sophomores...McDonald and Jones seniors. Looks like Karen Ferguson-Dayes has plenty coming back for next year and don't count the Cards out in the NCAA Tournament.



  1. Jeff McAdams11/07/2011 9:31 AM

    This was a *HUGE* match for the volleyball team, with outright first place in the Big East on the line. I would have loved to have seen more people come out for the final match of the season at Yum!, but it was a great afternoon anyway.

    This is a great team, doing great things with a limited number of personnel.

    I hope we can pack Cardinal Arena (again) on the 26th to honor Gosia Lech and Maci Wachtel for Senior Day.

  2. Absolutely, Jeff! The Cards have just eight healthy players on the roster and are still tops in the BIG EAST.


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