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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Thursday Cardinal Couple -- Cards find Houston no problem 81-62


- Shoni's 2000th career point highlight of 82-63 win

(Photo by Charlie Springer -
In what has become a predictable trend, the University of Louisville basketball team struggled with the opponent early in Wednesday night's game, made a late first half run to create some distance and embellished upon that with a run in the second half before allowing the opponent to cut into the lead over the final four minutes.

Houston tonight...but it could have been Temple, SMU, Memphis or several others in the AAC. Houston had a problem tonight and it came in the version of Sara, Shoni and "E". addition to their own cold shooting.

Shoni Schimmel scored the 2000th point of her illustrious career with 18:11 remaining in the second half.

The affable and engaging Howie Lindsey
I set the "over/under" at 18 minutes on when she would reach the total...I took the "under" and LSR/CSR's Howie Lindsey picked the "over" and won the bet. I'm shaving my beard off on St. Patrick's Day. If I had won, Howie was going to challenge Emmonnie Henderson to a 100 yd. dash...

Louisville did lead early...a Sara layup had the Cards up 7-3 with three minutes gone. It stretched out to 13-3 after Sara hit a "plus one" at the 14:33 mark. Houston wasn't going to surrender without a battle, though and used a 12-4 run to make it 17-15 halfway through the half.

The Coogs were still in hot pursuit and had a chance to tie it at 21-21 but Yasmeen Thompson clanged both free throw attempts with 8:05 on the clock. Louisville took off from there...outscoring UH 17-8 the rest of the half. Nita Slaughter contributed five of the points and two Sara jumpers had Louisville leading 38-27 after twenty minutes.

Sara led the Cards with 12 first half points and Shoni added 10. The Cards were a perfect 5-5 from the line and were winning the second chance stat 12-1. Despite 39% shooting and patches of tough to watch three-point shooting (3-13), the Cards looked in control.

And, control was the mission statement of the second half. Louisville steadily added to the lead...a Sara layup gave the Cards a 47-31 advantage four minutes into action. The lead stayed around that mark until UofL pieced together a 11-0 run over a two-minute stretch.

With the score 65-50...beginning at the 6:38 mark on a "E" free throw... an A-Tayy free throw with 4:18 to go made it 76-50 UofL. It was the Cards largest lead of the night. Houston did manage to outscore Louisville 12-5 the rest of the way...Walz using a myriad of combinations on the court...including four minutes for Starr Breedlove.

Sara led Louisville with 17 points, Shoni ended up with 15 and Emmonnie completed the double-figure Cards with 12.

A workable win for Louisville (26-2, 14-1) against the cellar dweller of the conference. This one never in any danger...Shoni the only Card with more than 30 minutes. Walz used every combination available except me in the paint, Worldwide firing threes and Jenny at point.

Houston got a large performance from 6'1" soph. forward Marche' Amerson who led all scorers with 23 points. The Coogs fall to 5-21 and 1-14 in the AAC.

Shoni admitted that she wasn't for sure how many points she needed to reach 2K last night and gave credit to her teammates over the past four years who helped her achieve the goal. Perhaps the most touching post-game comment came from Sara...who said that someday when she becomes a mom and grandmom, she'll be able to tell her kids and their kids that she played with Shoni Schimmel.

Coach Walz's post game comments were mostly directed to her achievement...but declined on ranking her a position in the top five or ten players that he has ever coached....stating that he doesn't rank players in categories like that.

Walz did mention that the team had a lot to work on and he was concerned that they seemed to be making a lot of the same mistakes. Mistakes he and the coaches have worked to correct. He related that he told them they were running out days and games to get better and left it up to them to decide if they were going to come together and achieve what last year's squad achieved.

Coach also commented that a performance like last night's would translate into a loss against Rugters.

That is who is on tap next. The Scarlet Knights come to town Sunday for a pivotal game in determining the AAC standings. Rutgers is on a five game win streak and will be looking for some revenge when they enter the YUM.

Let's hope it's not on the menu...



  1. I guess a win is a win but I witnessed some individual defensive effort / performances by several of our players last night that I didn't think I'd ever see. Not gonna call them out here as there is no point but anyone that watched the game knows who I'm talking about.

    Walz is right. A repeat performance like that against Rutgers will get us thrashed.

    1. The Cards are a false three. The only two schools that are good in their schedule both beat them. They would be a midpack ACC or SEC school this year and defenses in either conference would shut down your Shoni just like UConn did. You better hope UCon is not the top seed that gets sent to Louisville for the regionals. If you get that far.

    2. Listen Tool. I don't know who you are but you've got a poor memory. We were a five seed last year, lost 8 games during the season and still knocked out a higher #1 than either UConn and ND will be rated this year. We eat higher seeds for breakfast.

      We can only beat who we play. We DGAS when we meet UConn or ND or anyone else in the Tourney. We're a better team this year than last and we'll be ready to rock. Don't forget to bring your crying towel when the games actually matter.

  2. It makes me a little nervous, but I am fairly confident they will hit their peak in the tournament. (They always play their best at that time.) It is a little nerve wracking when you watch the other top 5 teams play and then watch the Cards. They do not even seem to compare. Especially, when you consider the level of competition outside of those in the AAC.

  3. There are so many reasons I look forward to next year in the ACC, but one of the main ones is that the games will be competitive and the team will be challenged to play well all conference long, instead of this complacency. To be playing overall as poorly as they have in long stretches of games, and to still win by double digits speaks volumes to the level of competition. Bring on the ACC.

    1. Good Points. Big changes coming next year. Much Much stronger competition. No Shoni. Will be a huge challenge. It will be interesting to see how Walz responds to the changes. From a tactical coaching standpoint it will be a big change from having one baller that has carte blanche to putting a club out there that can compete as a cohesive team at the higher level on a consistent basis.

  4. I am unsure of the reasoning but it appears that in Ohio folks are voting for the player of the year selection.
    Link below takes you to the correct page where we can vote for our UL recruit, Sydney.

    1. Good link. Just voted. It's close so Card fans need to put their vote up.

    2. YES! Let's all vote for Syd the Kid!

    3. Paulie put this on right side of the site for all to see.

    4. Will do tonight when I get home. Tell a neighbor, share with a friend


  5. I was just talking about the game with a friend that also played HS and college ball. We were laughing about how a baller used to get destroyed by their teammates and coaches when they played "Miss America" or "Prom Queen" defense. If you balled you know what I'm talking about. That's when you just wave at the ball handler as they drive past you for another lay up.

    Hopefully we're getting this nasty habit out of our collective systems now and will actually be ready to play the real game when it matters.

    Love my Cards but lets get real.

  6. Just in case anyone didn't think that Rutgers was taking Sunday seriously...

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