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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Lady Cards fall on road to DePaul 86-61



-Cards start slow, DePaul bombs away in 25 point win.

Sometimes you produce a clunker. Remember the Lady Cards against Georgetown last year? 

 That's exactly what happened to the University of Louisville women's basketball team on the road tonight...falling 86-61 to DePaul. Except, in this one...there was no 11 point halftime lead.

For Louisville it was a case of being "the gang that couldn't shoot straight" while DePaul buried three 3-pointers in an early 11-0 run that had that Cards down 17-2 with 13:34 left in the first half.

After that, it was pretty much over...

Starters: Shoni, Vails, Smith, Burke and Taylor 

Anna Martin had 19 in the DePaul win.
The Cards missed their first seven shots and trailed 6-0 with 16:32 left in the first half. When Shoni Schimmel finally buried a jumper, it just seemed to infuriate the Blue Demons all that more.

A Jasmine Penny layup and then consecutive threes from Anna Martin, Megan Rogowski and Martin again had it 17-2 DePaul and the Cards looked lost, confused and demoralized. The McGrath Arena crowd was going crazy and they had every right to...the 2300 in attendance sounded more like 23,000.

A Cierra Warren tip-in and Bria Smith jumper got Louisville within 11...but Anna Martin scored on a layup with 10:12 remaining to make it 21-6. Louisville would battle back to within 10 after an Asia Taylor jumper made it 25-15 with 5:56 left, but DePaul took off on a 13-7 run over the next four and a half minutes, capped by another Rogowski three to lead 38-22 with 1:12 to go.

It remained that way until the first half buzzer.

Rogowski hit again...sinking a buzzer beating three to put DePaul in the locker room up by 18. The sequence leading up to her bomb saw Shelby Harper commit 3 fouls in eight seconds trying to force out-of bounds possesions and no more shots for DePaul. Katherine Harry's pass to an open Rogowski solved that, though.

"They scored again? Goof grief!"
 Harry was a rebounding machine in the first half...collecting 13 to go with six points. Anna Martin was the DePaul scoring leader with 10. Only five Blue Demons scored in the first twenty. They shot 6-13 from beyond the arc and 16-34 for a sizzling 47.1% in the first half.

Louisville was led by Cierra Warren's six points. Walz played all 11 available to him...but they could only produce 9-34 shooting for a dismal 26.5% and committed 11 turnovers. Asia Taylor had seven rebounds, Bria Smith went 1-8 from the floor. The Lady Cards were 1-5 from three point range.

Needless to say, Louisville had their work cut out for them in the final twenty minutes. Martin and Smith exchanged baskets to begin play...but DePaul took off on a 10-0 run over the next three minutes to lead 53-24 before a Becky Burke three stopped the bleeding with 16:23 left. The team traded baskets for the next couple of minutes before a brief Cardinal run cut the margin to 59-38 after a Shawnta Dyer putback at the 12:19 mark. DePaul took off again, though...enjoying leads of 65-38 and 69-40.

The Blue Demons led by 30 twice, the final time when Harry knocked down two free throws at the 4:58 mark to put it at 79-49 DePaul. Louisville managed to outscore DePaul 12-7 the rest of the way...Cierra Warren picking up eight late points on layups and free throws. Final 86-61.

DePaul placed 5 in double figures. Martin led all scorers with 19 points. Hrynko added 18, Jasmine Penny finished with 14, Harry had 14 with 20 rebounds and Rogowski totaled 11. DePaul played seven players for total of 198 minutes of a possible 200. The injury bug didn't affect them tonight. Not sure if we liked Ortiz and Hrynko launching four three point attempts when DePaul was up by 26 with three minutes left...but you play till the final buzzer. At least they missed three of them. Stay classy, DePaul.

For Louisville, Warren's late outburst co-led the Cards with 14 points. Shoni had nine second half points to finish with 14 as well. Taylor recorded a double-double with 12 points and ten boards. In the rest of the scoring...Dyer had eight, Burke five, Smith four and Vails and Slaughter two each. Jude, Hammond and Harper all played but did not score in the contest.  

The Cards shot 35.2% (25-71) for the 40 minutes...DePaul actually got better in the second half and finished at 50% (32-64). Louisville went 3-17 from 3-point land, DePaul 10-25. The Cards finished with 14 turnovers, DePaul had 26 assists to Louisville's 11 and each team had 41 rebounds. 

Asia's play one of the few bright spots
in the DePaul debacle.
Disappointing? Yes, in many ways. The runs by DePaul to start each half show that Louisville didn't come prepared to play, either at the start of the game or coming out of the locker room to begin the second half. Louisville got only 23 points out of their starting guards tonight, and 26 from Taylor and Warren combined. A case of a bad shooting night for the Cards and a incredible shooting performance from the Blue Demons. 

Not that it really means anything...but Louisville has scored 70 or less points now in nine straight games.

It's hard to get fired up when you're down by 29 with 3/4ths. of the second half to go, I guess. Tough to respond when your opponent keeps drilling threes and getting away for fast break layups. Chalk it up as a learning experience. Hot team in front of a fired-up home crowd. No one said that second half of the season would be easy...the road remains tough with a Saturday visit to WVU.

On a night where Rutgers got demolished by Notre Dame...the Cards followed suit and got out-played by an inspired DePaul squad. Welcome to the BIG EAST...

At least this one wasn't drug out over the final few minutes with free throw attempts. Gotta look on the bright side.


(Not much about this one to recall fondly, but...)

-Asia Taylor with another strong performance. Until you look at Katherine Harry's 20 grabs (17 on the defensive boards...)and 14 points. Still, three good efforts in a row for the Columbus, OH junior. A solid 12 and 10. She needed a little help tonight...though.

-Cierra Warren going to the boards and scoring. We expected she'd have a good night against the DePaul front line and she responded.


(We could spend the next two hours on this, so we'll keep it short and sweet)

-3-point defense. DePaul was averaging eight makes in 24 attempts coming into tonight's game. Louisville allowed 10-25. Tough when multiple players are sinking them...but no reason for giving them wide open looks time after time.

-Slow starts. Coming out to begin halves and getting outscored 29-4 isn't going to win you any intensity points. If DePaul can do that, imagine what UConn or Notre Dame, forget it. Never mind.

Coach Walz's postgame remarks pretty much summed it up. Louisville didn't play a lick. It was an old-fashioned butt whuppin'. (We'd describe it more as Nazi Germany invading Poland in 1939.) Coach Bruno, on the other hand, spent the last minute of his post-game presser speaking of "s'mores".

Whatever it takes, Doug.

A rough night against a good opponent. It happens. Tear off the rear-view mirror and look ahead. Add any non-sequiter you wish as well. 17-5 isn't a bad year, so far. We're pretty confident the Lady Cards can reach the 20 game win plateau before BIG EAST play. Anything after that...could be challenging. The Cards head to wild and wonderful West Virginia Saturday for another tough one. Let's hope they remember to put the defense in their luggage. It got left in the Louisville International airport terminal yesterday.


  1. The Lady Cards got "Providenced" UGLY.

  2. What time do the Lady Cards play? I just had a horrible dream that they went to DePaul and got out-played in every facet of basketball. Popcorn sounds good...

    David "defend the three-point shooter" Watson

  3. Just gotta chalk this one up to "one of those games", and hope it was a fluke game. Guess we'll see if they are really that much better than us when they come to the YUM!. I don't believe they are that much better. Even so, can't sit around worrying about it as another tough one is coming, at WV.

  4. Ok, so they come back down here the 25th. Get the big girl outta there. She can't rebound if she's sitting on the floor after getting knocked down by a "agressive" blockout. Walz designated three fouls for Harper last night. How about designating 15 for the big girl from Asia, Cierra and Sara? Try to draw the charge, climb into her sports bra and guard her. Slam into her every time the ball goes into the air. 20 rebounds is ridiculous. Identify, activate and eliminate. And, someone guard the three. Please. This isn't a "horse" game.

    Blue Lou


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