We report on the joy and excitement of UofL women's sports here. Thanks for checking us out! Click the picture of Louie to hear the latest Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast!!

Friday, January 31, 2020

WBB Cards Crush Irish 86-54 -- FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


Here's a flash for you. 

Notre Dame doesn't have a very good women's basketball team this year. 

Shocked at this obvious understatement? Let us present the case for you, then. The Cards held the Irish to 29.5% shooting last night in South Bend. Louisville had four in double figure scoring, three others knocking on that double digit door and rested the starters in the fourth quarter. A a 86-54 thumping of Muffet's student-athletes last night in the Purcell Pavilion, in front of 7719 patrons. 

It wasn't that close. 

The Cards WBB squad wasted no time in securing their 21st win of the season. The scoreboard read 9-0 visitors after three minutes. Dana Evans already had five points and the TV announcers were already making excuses for the woefully under talented home team. Evans would total 11 points in a blitzkrieg first ten minutes that gave UofL a 27-11 lead. The homecoming for Dana (she's from Gary, IN) was off to a fine beginning. 

Despite six turnovers, too, by the Cards. Mostly on run-out fast breaks designed to score even more points.  The Cards ended the quarter on a 13-3 run and shot 62.5% from the floor. To prove the balance statement, Bionca Dunham already had six of her nine points and the Irish did not score in the final 2:40 of the first quarter. 

If there was any lapse in the Cards domination, it occurred in the first five minutes of the second quarter. ND managed to find Sam Brunelle for seven points and the Irish used a 12-6 run to cut the Cardinal lead to 33-23. 

The Cards responded with a "enough of this nonsense" reply, though, and took off on a 7-0 run and when the second quarter media timeout at the 4:22 mark, the Cards had pushed the advantage back out to 17 at 40-23. Louisville would continue to outplay Notre Dame in the remainder of the half, their 10-6 run was fueled by four points each from Jazmine Jones and Elizabeth Balogun. A 50-25 lead with 1:21 left in the half was slightly dented by two ND scores, which equaled the number of blocks Kylee Shook had in those final 120 second and the Cards went to the locker room in possession of a 50-29 lead. 

Louisville put up 21-33 (63%) shooting numbers, had 15 assists on those made buckets and "Jonesie" had all eight of her points in a second quarter that the Cards won 23-18. Evans led all scorers with 14 points and Shook (9 pts.) and Balogun ( 9 pts.) weren't far behind. 

The only question remaining was whether the Cards could hit the 100-pt. mark for the game. 

Fortunately, for Notre Dame, the beating subsided somewhat in the final twenty minutes. 

Kasa, Ya-Ya and Liz were getting time on the court, the Cards started the third quarter on a 21-8 run over the first six minutes and the score stood at 65-37, after a Diop three, at the third quarter media timeout.

Katlyn Gilbert and Brunelle were trying to keep it interesting on the other side of the court. They totaled all of Notre Dame's 14 points in the third quarter, but Louisville countered with 24 points, seven different Cards scoring. A Robinson free throw with 35 secconds left set the end-of-third-quarter score at 74-43 Cards. All Louisville's starters were watching from the bench by now and it would be up to Jess Laemmle, Lindsey Duvall, Kasa, Liz Dixon and Ya-Ya to turn off the lights and run a dust mop over the floor. 

Somehow, in the fourth quarter, Lindsey Duvall magically became Molly Lockhart -- thanks to the transformation produced and imagined by the worst play-by-play guy in women's college basketball --  Adam Amin.

It must have been a precipitant for the former Miss Kentucky GBB to do great things with the double identity, she had five points in the fourth quarter, was involved in all of the Cardinal scoring in the first six minutes with an assist as well and the Cards reserves were holding on to the 31-point lead. How many she actually totalled while posing as Molly, we're not sure. 

Molly wasn't even in South Bend, still feeling the effects of the flu and back in Louisville. Network announcers....right?  

Look, I realize the Cards can't get Debbie Antonelli and Pam Ward for each broadcast -- I get it -- there are other great games to cover. Just send "Adam" to call lawn bowing, pickle ball or ants crawling across the sidewalk, not UofL WBB. I can hope, right? 

The pace had slowed down in the fourth period. No points for either squad in the first two minutes. A Dixon free throw, Jess jumper and bucket by Ya-Ya with 2:43 to go closed out the UofL point-production. The Irish weren't exactly "lighting it up", though...after a Brunelle three, Notre Dame went four and a half minutes without a basket, missing nine straight shots. 

While Walz made sure that all ten he had eligible for the game saw at least double-digit minutes, Miss Muffet didn't wave the white flag and empty her bench until just 59 seconds showed on the clock. Reserve Nicole Benz rattled in a three for the Irish with 39 second to play and the Cards walked off the court with a 86-54 win. 

For those who wondered, Walz is still being careful with Norika Konno after her knee procedure, and did not play her. If she's up to it, she might see action Sunday against the USA National squad. 

A good-as-expected effort from the Cards starters, none of them saw more than 26 minutes. Ya-Ya Diop saw 30 minutes and stuffed the stat sheet with a nine points, nine rebounds, seven assists, four rebounds and three blocked shots.

Wow ! 

Kylee added six blocks to go with her 12 points and six just 22 minutes. Dana ended up with a team-leading 17 points, just one turnover and six assists.  

It was a one-sided contest, and the side representing Derby City was that side.


Would the late, great Freddy Mercury have changed the song
line to "We are the champions, in South Bend' after last night?
FREE THROWS -- The Cards were a less than average 11-16 for 68.8%. The starters, however, were nine for ten from the charity stripe. Dana and Jaz nine for nine. "Fred Rules" dictate, however, to be considered for a letter, the number must be 70% or higher. So, no letter for the performance from the line.

REBOUNDING --  Louisville took a 45-32 advantage on the boards and every Card but Jess was responsible for at least one. The stats folks at South Bend must have been pre-occupied, a total of eight Irish rebounds were credited to "other". I have no problem in awarding a CAPITAL "R" for UofL's domination on the boards. 

EFFICIENCY/EXECUTION -- Louisville scored 34 points-in-the-paint, had 25 assists on 34 baskets and committed 16 turnovers, with six of them coming in the first quarter. The Cards got 24 bench points and 18 points off turnovers. 54% from the floor shooting for the game, after that sizzling first half. Team execution and efficiency was quite outstanding and I can easily assign a CAPITAL "E" in this category.

DEFENSE -- A stoppage of Irish production, indeed. ND shot 29.5%, the Cards forced 16 turnovers and Notre Dame managed just seven second chance points. Kylee's six block were a big part of the 10 total the Cards blocked. Besides Gilbert and Brunelle, the Irish couldn't accomplish much when they had the orb. The Cards had 10 steals and the Irish ended up with just 54 points. Let's close out the FRED report with a CAPITAL "D" for the Louisville defensive effort. 







One game at a time, one win at a time and check off another "W" on the Walz refrigerator . A fun one to watch, heightened even more by McGraw's sarcastic and irrelevant comments after the beat-down. She thinks Louisville deserves to be in the top 10. (Sit right there and don't move while I alert as many media outlets as I can)

No one likes a soggy sandwich. Muffet is dining on them nightly now and seeing how the other half of women's college basketball lives.

Spare me any "poor Muffet" dialogue. The "boomerang" has died in mid-flight. Losers out of the last six of her seven, she still talks of winning the ACC Tournament. 

Yeah, sure. 

Some early turnovers got Walz to call a timeout to send a wake-up message and the Cards cruised after that.

Notre Dame is not a good basketball team this year, I'll say it again. In their remaining nine conference games, I'm setting the over/under on Irish wins at two. Pitt, they'll probably beat, they could win at Boston College. After that, it doesn't look good for the blue and gold. 

Louisville impressed me again with the "one-for-all" team concept for the second game in a row. It's much tougher to have to worry about guarding five players than a selected three or four.

Jaz barely missed a double-double with 14 points and nine rebounds. Ya-Ya was close with nine points and nine rebounds. Adding to the pleasure, Lindsey and Jess saw plenty of minutes, both scored and...well...this was a fun one to just sit back and enjoy on ESPNEWS without stressing over things and worrying about a late collapse. 

I hope this Cardinal team that I saw last night continues to play like this in their final eight conference games, against the USA National team and in the ACC Tournament. 

("Thanks" to Tom Farmer, of The Crunch Zone, for putting his post-game presser videos on YOU TUBE) 


Thursday, January 30, 2020

Cards Visit Notre Dame -- Softball Upgrades -- Spring Sports Media Day II -- THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Cards Visit Notre Dame

Ah, one of those games we really look forward to each year is once again upon us.  Coach Walz and his squad travel to the Purcell Pavilion in South Bend to take on Muffet McGraw and Notre Dame.  This rivalry has really heated up over the past couple seasons.

Notre Dame is having a horrid year.  The Irish are 7-13 and hold a 2-6 conference mark.  They are 14th (of out 15 teams) in the ACC.

The two conference wins for the Irish come against Pitt on the road and Miami at home. Not much to hang a hat there...Pitt is woeful and Miami has plummeted since Bea Mompremier hasn't been playing with a foot injury

Scoring just 64.6 points per game, Notre Dame is near the bottom of the barrel in the ACC in scoring.  The 3.7 three-point shots made and 23.9% three-point shooting are dead last in the league and an uncharacteristic mark for Notre Dame.

Danielle Cosgrove
89% of the offensive production has come from the starting five.  Sam Brunelle averages 14.1 points per game to lead the charge.  Destinee Walker (who transferred from UNC) and Katlyn Gilbert have nearly identical numbers, averaging 13.9 and 13.8 points per game, respectively.  Anaya Peoples averages 12.6 points per game and Mikayla Vaughn rounds out the top five with 11.1 ppg.

Peoples will not be a factor since she tore her right shoulder labrum in the second quarter against NC State on Jan. 12.  Vaughn has filled the void since then.

Marta Sniezek (a Stanford transfer) rounds out the current starting five, but has not proven to be an offensive threat this year. Highly sought-after Danielle Cosgrove is in her second season at Notre Dame. The  6'4" forward has contributed little to the Irish attack in her two seasons on campus.

For a novelty, the Irish also have the twin sisters Maggie and Cate Murdock on the roster. Neither of the sophomores have scored this year and have played in five games each.

Notre Dame has averaged over 18 turnovers per game.  The 290 assists (14.5 per game) on 486 made shots is a nice mark to have and shows good ball movement.

Defensively, Notre Dame has given mixed signals.  Allowing 69.3 points per game, they sit second-to-last in the league.  However, their 18.6 forced turnovers per game and 9.2 steals per game are a league best.  They have allowed opponents to make roughly 30% of their three-point attempts.

The Irish have been dominated on the boards this year.  While they average 38 rebounds per game, opponents have averaged a whopping 44.5 per game.

The overall head-to-head record is pretty ugly as Notre Dame dominated the series for a long time.  The Irish defeated the Cards by 14 in the regular season and 20 in the ACC Championship.  The year prior, the Cards took the Irish down by two in the ACC Championship and had the 100-67 party during the regular season.  Remember the three-point buzzer beater by Nite-Nite to close out the third quarter?

The Cards are 6-16 all-time against the Irish, but 2-2 in the last four meetings.  It has been nearly 11 years since Louisville last won in South Bend.

You can tune into ESPNEWS if you're trying to catch this one on TV.  The contest was originally scheduled for "the Mothership" ESPN, but got bumped. Network executives probably looked at this one, said, "Not as interesting as we once thought it might be" and moved it to an obscure channel.  It should also be available on the ESPN app or website for a live stream option.  There's always the option to tune into Nick Curran and AJ call the game on 790 AM (WKRD).  7:00 tip-off for this one.

Softball Upgrades

Social media gave us a preview of the new softball uniforms that came out for this season and they are a sight to see!  Celene Funke and Maddy Newman showcased the different uniform options.

Also, other upgrades include new seating inside Ulmer Stadium as well as new lights.  Similar to the KFC Yum! Center lighting, the lights at Ulmer will be brighter.  If you drive by at nighttime you can see the light poles glowing red.

The upgrades come in time for a season that will include hosting the ACC Tournament.

On a side note, if you're an Instagram user, check out the NCAA Softball page (@ncaasoftball) today to see Funke take us through a day in her life.  Yesterday, Claire Chaussee and Tori Dilfer took over the NCAA Volleybal Instagram (@ncaavolleyball) to show us the insides of Louisville Volleyball.


The showcase of UofL Spring Sports continues today with five programs met with the media.

Softball, Lacrosse, Rowing, Men's Tennis and Men's Golf gathered at the Koerber facility on Floyd street. Coaches and players from each program discusses the season ahead and developments with their squads. The activities got underway at noon.

Last week was Swimming and Diving, Women's Golf, Women's Tennis and Track and Field.

Paulie attended and captured the words and ask questions. Added below the comments from each group.  All the squads and their coaches were factual, informative and entertaining -- the 90 minutes seemed to fly by.








Happy Thursday and Go Cards!  Beat Ms Muffet!


Wednesday, January 29, 2020



We are halfway through the ACC Conference slate, and after nine ACC game, only Louisville Women's basketball can point to an undefeated conference record. 

At 9-0, the Cards are a game ahead of North Carolina St. (8-1) and three games up on Florida State (6-3). Both Louisville and NC State have just one loss in their 2019-20 schedule results...the Cards at 20-1 fell to Ohio State on Dec. 5th and NC State (19-1) tumbled at North Carolina 66-60 on January 9th. Florida St. has complied a 17-3 record, with all three losses in conference. They fell at Syracuse, in overtime, 90-89, hosting Georgia Tech 67-52 and at NC State 68-51. 

The way the ACC Tournament sets up allows the top four finishers in conference a bye until Friday games. If the tournament were to start tomorrow, Louisville, NC State and FSU would be three of those teams. #4 seed would (as of now) go to Virginia Tech, who is 5-3 in conference and 16-4 overall.  Georgia Tech, UNC, Wake Forest and Duke are all knocking at that "double bye" door, though, with just four losses. 

With at least nine conference games left for the majority of the teams that participate in the ACC (Va. Tech, Boston College, and Pitt still have 10 games to play in conference), it's way too early to make predictions on final seeding, obviously, of today... the first three games, on Wednesday, (comprising of seeds 10-15) would match some sort of combination between Pitt, Notre Dame, Virginia, Clemson, Boston College, Miami and Syracuse. 

Here's the ACC WBB standings, going into Thursday's action: 

Louisville           9-0, 20-1
NC State            8-1, 19-1
Fla. State          6-3, 17-3
Va. Tech            5-3, 16-4
Ga. Tech           5-4, 14-6
UNC                  5-4, 14-6
Wake Forest      5-4, 12-8
Duke                 5-4, 11-9
Boston College  3-5, 10-10
Miami               3-6, 11-9
Syracuse           3-6, 9-10
Virginia            3-6, 8-12 
Clemson           3-6, 7-13
Notre Dame      2-7, 7-13
Pitt                  0-8, 3-16

The Cards have not faced Fla. State, Notre Dame, NC State, Georgia Tech, or Virginia Tech yet and four of these five teams are the second through fifth ranked teams in the conference. The battle ahead for Louisville, quite frankly, is a tough one. 

Four out of Louisville's nine remaining conference games are at the KFC YUM! Center. Fla. St, Notre Dame, Boston College and Virginia Tech are the visitors. 

Louisville gets the advantage of hosting Fla. State at home  on Feb 6th. A tough match awaits the Cards on Feb.13th. when they travel to Raleigh, NC and take on Ms. Wuf and her gang of Wolves. A week later, the Cards land in Atlanta to visit Buzz and the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Both are Thursday contests. There will be ACC Network coverage for NC State and, from what I'm understanding... RSN (Fox Sports something-or-other) will show the Georgia Tech game. This stuff changes, though, so check here on game days and we'll provide the viewing option. 

Thank goodness only one of the final nine are on the ACC Network Extra. The Cards and Pitt on Feb. 20th. go to the internet-only broadcasting source.  

A conference-season ending tilt, bringing in Virginia Tech on March 1st, could have big implications on the ACC Conference Tournament pairings.  

If you're a fan of Bracketology, the ESPN "experts" have six ACC teams getting invites to the "Big Dance".  Currently, the Cards are the lone #1 seed for the ACC. Others listed in the Bracketology guess are NC State, FSU, Ga. Tech, UNC and Va. Tech. I think Wake Forest and Duke should merit a little consideration as well, and if they finish strong and have good showings in the ACC Tournament, I think they'll earn NCAA Tournament bids.

If Miami can ever get Bea Mompremier healthy, watch out for the Canes, too.  

It also looks like, for now, we'll have an NCAA Tournament without "Q" (Syracuse) or "Muffet" (Notre Dame) unless either can win the ACC Tournament and get the automatic bid. When was the last time that happened...both of those usually very successful programs being shut out of the field of 64? 

Thursday, January 30th. action involves Virginia at North Carolina, Georgia Tech goes to Miami and Boston College travels to Tallahassee to face FSU. The NC State Wolfpack invade Clemson, UofL at Notre Dame (an ESPN game!), Wake visits Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech sojourns to Syracuse. 


Coach Jeff Walz met with the media today at 12:30 p.m. in the Media room at Planet Fitness Koeber Center. We have the audio link from P.F.K.C. here at the site for you to hear. A hard pitch for USA vs. Louisville, a little Notre Dame discussion and whatever else crossed Coach's mind. 

No players appeared with him. I wonder if USA WBB has started moving their travelling show into the P.F.K.C. yet? They practice Fri. and Sat. on Floyd Street and we found out more about availability today.




Five student-athletes from the 2019 Louisville women's soccer team were honored Tuesday afternoon by being named to the 2019 All-ACC Academic Team. 

Seniors Ariana Ferraro and Brooklynn Rivers made the list. It's the second time for Rivers. 

Juniors Emina Ekic and Gabby Kouzelos achieved the 3.0 GPA from the previous semester as well. Ekic has been named to the team all three years she has been here at UofL. Kouzelos makes her second appearance on the squad. 

Sophomore Delaney Snyder rounds out the list of Cardinal WSOC student-athletes honored. 

A 3.0 GPA from the previous semester and cumulative 3.0 GPA during the student-athletes academic career are the criteria for making the squad. Athletic achievements are also considered in selecting the team.

Virginia had eight student-athletes named to the squad, Duke seven, Clemson and NC State placed six on the roster and Louisville, FSU, UNC and Wake Forest added five players each to the prestigious list.  

Congratulations to these five Cardinal student-athletes for their awards and achievements !  


Interested in the 2020 Cards WBB signee Hailey Van Lith? Here's a video below you might enjoy !

A wonderful Wednesday to you!


Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Rankings -- Spring Sports Countdown -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

New Rankings

Not much changed changed in the latest  AP rankings minus a couple switches here and there.  The Civil War had the biggest effect, causing Oregon to move up to #3 and knocking Oregon State down to #10.

South Carolina remained #1 and was the heavy favorite for the top spot after they improved their record to 19-1.  Baylor remained in the #2 spot after moving to 17-1 on the year.  They did received three first place ballots.  UConn, who took down rival Tennessee earlier in the week, dropped to #4 and only sits six points behind the Ducks.

UConn fell to the USWNT last night 79-64 after trailing by a single point entering the final quarter.

Louisville remained at #5 and received a first place vote again.  The Cards had a solid victory against Virginia on Thursday and trounced Pitt on Sunday.  They head to Notre Dame on Thursday night, which will we preview that day, and host Team USA on Sunday.

Have you got your USA vs Louisville tickets yet? Coach Walz has asked the media to help him promote the exhibition and you don't want to miss our Cardinals going up against the best in the world!

There are lower bowl seat available, last I heard, and after last night's UConn vs, USA game, we need to show the Huskies that we can pack our arena, too. That was a good game, UConn hanging in there after a slow start until the very end.

OK, back to the rankings.

Stanford, NC State, UCLA, Mississippi State, and Oregon State round out the Top 10.  Other notable rankings are Kentucky at #13 and Florida State at #14.  The ACC has had somewhat of a down year with just three teams sitting in the Top 25.

Speaking of Wildcats, UK struggled a bit with Auburn last night in Memorial Coliseum before getting a 68-61 win.

If you haven't seen Unique Thompson play for Auburn yet, do yourself a favor and catch her action. She blistered the Cats for 27 points last night!  The 6'3" junior forward also had 15 rebounds and held Rhyne Howard to just 10 points. Unique is fun to watch, and she's got Dana/Kylee- type eyelashes !!

Spring Sports Countdown

Some sports like tennis and swimming and diving have begun already while others are swiftly approaching.

Lacrosse is nearly upon us.  Their season opener at Cincinnati is just 12 days away.  Their home opener is 18 days away.

Softball is a tad closer to their season when they begin the NFCA Leadoff Classic in Clearwater, Fla in 10 days.  They won't be at Ulmer Stadium until March, however.

Golf has a little more time before they begin their spring season, with the Moon Golf Invitational in Melbourne, Fla coming in mid-February.

The second Spring Sports Media Day is scheduled for Thursday at the Cards WBB practice facility. This time, Softball, Lacrosse, Rowing, men's Tennis and men's golf will take the stage.

Thank You, Kobe

Paulie already mentioned this yesterday but I want to also pay my respects to Kobe Bryant.  Besides his legacy in the NBA and his character he has made a lasting impact on the women's basketball community.

To those who don't know, Kobe was coaching some of his daughters' basketball teams and has been a big advocate for women's basketball at the high school and collegiate level.  Less than two weeks ago, Kobe went to visit UofL commit Hailey Van Lith and the two took a picture together, which we have featured for you.

Imagine 20 years with just one team. It sounds ridiculous in today's free agency, but Kobe was a Laker all those years and meant so much to LA. They say he built the Staples Center and, after his retirement, worked non-stop to promote women's sports.

He and his daughter also had a close relationship with Geno the UConn WBB squad and at last night's game they paid tribute to "Mambacita" with a UConn jersey draped over a chair on thee UConn bench and other tributes to 13 yr. old GiGi. Gone too soon, Kobe, Gigi and the seven others on that helicopter that definitely should have been grounded.


Already yelling at the refs for not calling her way
There are no women's sporting events for the next couple of days, giving us a slight rest in event coverage. We're guessing Walz will hold his usual Wednesday presser, so we'll have that to post for you in Paulie's article tomorrow. 

Thursday, we will get to see the Cards destroy Notre Dame. It's an ESPN game. I'll preview that more on Thursday. Paulie won't be attending in South Bend, he's 0-3 up on the Notre Dame campus for sporting events and doesn't want to jinx the Cards WBB squad

The Irish are 7-13 on the season, 2-7 in ACC play and got blown out Charlottesville Sunday by the 8-12, 3-6 Virginia Cavaliers by a 90-60 result.

Happy Tuesday and Go Cards!


Monday, January 27, 2020



With six in double figure scoring (almost seven) and a defensive effort that allowed just 29.7% Pittsburgh shooting, Louisville had no trouble Sunday against the Pitt Panthers in the KFC YUM! Center with a 83-49 win. 

The crowd of 11624, bolstered by over 1500 Girl Scouts, saw Louisville jump on the Panthers early, maintain the pressure throughout the entire contest and go to 20-1 on the season and 9-0 in ACC play. 

R.I.P #24 and Gianna. We will always remember you.
Shocking news of the death of Kobe Bryant and his daughter, plus seven others, in a helicopter crash broke as Sonja and I were in the media room, having our pre-game meal and doing our pre-game preparation. It tempered the aspect of the game and our enthusiasm level, knowing that a guy who had spent all 20 of his NBA years in Los Angeles and had meant so much to women's basketball was no longer with us. 

Louisville came out to find that the Panthers were OK with being competition early, and the Cards fell behind for the first 3-1/2 minutes. Two Liz Dixon free throws evened the score at 7-7 and started a three-minute, 13-0 run for Louisville that put them up 18-7 after Kylee Shook was on the receiving end of a fast-break pass from Elizabeth Balogun. A Dana Evans three-pointer bumped the advantage up to 21-13 with 1:55 left in the first, and that's how the first ten minutes ended. 

Evans had seven of the UofL points after one, the Cards had taken advantage of a 5-0 edge in fast-break points and second chance opportunities. Louisville forced the visitors into six first-quarter turnovers. 

Louisville and Pitt played pretty evenly for the first half of the second quarter. A Bionca Dunham set the tally at 26-17 and kicked off a 13-5 Cardinal run that developed over the next four minutes. Kasa Robinson, Louisville defensive stalwart, got the crowd up and cheering wildly when she went on her own 4-0 run with a jumper, steal and resulting layup to push the Cards to a 36-22 advantage. That sequence started a half-ending 9-2 Louisville spurt that sent the Cards to the locker room holding a 41-24 lead. 

Louisville won the second quarter 20-11 and Evans led all scorers with 12 points. Elizabeth Balogun was having a productive first half, as well, with seven points and six rebounds. And, how about our own Philly Fanatic Dunham...putting in a fantastic 15 minutes that netted her eight points, five grabs and three assists. The Cardinal defense had held Pitt to just 10-34 shooting (29%) and Pitt had committed 10 turnovers. 

Would the Cards keep up the impressive defensive tenacity and continue to score at will in the final 20 minutes? 

Coach looking one way, everyone else the other way. Hmmm. 
They certainly did. As she has done in the past several games, Jazmine Jones used the second half to make her mark on the contest. Her eight points led Louisville to a 25-11 win in the third session. Six of the eight Cardinals that played in the third hit the scoreboard and UofL started the session with a 12-3 run that covered the first five minutes. The score was 53-27 and Walz went to a lineup with both Shook and Dixon on the court at the same time to see what they could do inside.

Dunham, Evans and Jones were pretty much done for the afternoon, the Cardinal dual-posts tallied the next six points and Balogun capped off the quarter by nailing a three as time expired on an exciting sequence.  Dixon grabbed a missed free throw attempt from Robinson, quickly got the ball to a wide open "E" and she drained the attempt with a second on the clock.

66-35 after three quarters. Nine Pitt turnovers in those ten minutes had led to 12 points-off-turnovers for the Cards and the only real question that remained was if UofL would go into one of their recent fourth quarter swoons? 

It kinda didn't happen but it was a tale of two stories in the fourth period.

With Diop, Shook, Balogun, Dixon and Robinson on the court to start the fourth , the Cards built the lead to 40 at 75-35 after Ya-Ya finished a fast break with a layup at the 7:34 mark. Pitt hadn't scored yet in the fourth and Walz emptied the bench after that, bringing in Jess and Lindsey for Balogun and Shook. The Cards largest lead came seconds after that at 77-35 when Dixon connected in the paint off a Laemmle pass. Thus concludes the first story. A 11-0 Cards happy success.  

The theme of the second story of the fourth quarter concerns Louisville's shooting. It wasn't very productive in the final five minutes, going just two for eight, and Pitt did take the latter part of the final period 14-6.  The contest had been long since over, things were well-in-hand for a Cards "W" and no UofL starters were left on the court. Jess scored Louisville final bucket, with a nice hesitation move and drive to the hoop with 26 seconds left and, at the buzzer, the board read Cards 83- Panthers 49.

Despite the final five minutes, Louisville won the fourth quarter 17-14, Diop leading the way for Louisville with six points in the fourth. Freshman Dayshanette Harris had a huge final period for Pitt, hitting three buckets and three free throws for nine of her total 18 points. 83-49 was the final and Walz ended the evening on court with a passionate plea for the fans to buy USA vs. Louisville tickets. We stand with him on this one. 

Listen up, knuckleheads. This is the team that will represent the USA in the Olympics. Angel is coming to town. A 2 p.m. start ensures you won't miss any Super Bowl action and why are you interested in a football game without Satterfield or Lamar, anyway?  


Former Pitt three-point specialist Fred Potvin
saw this coming, left Pitt to go to Canada.
FREE THROWS -- The refs really didn't get n the way too much in Sunday's game. Pitt is a foul prone squad due to youth and inexperience and that led to 19 Cardinal free throw attempts. They sank 14 of them for a 73.7%. Liz led the way, going 4-4, and the Cardinal starters were 9 for 11 (83%). Based on these numbers, we can grant a CAPTIAL "F" for foul-stripe accuracy. 

REBOUNDS -- Louisville controlled the defensive board 29-22 but Pitt took the offensive boards 18-13. "E" stood tall for the second game in a row, co-leading Louisville with eight, but huge props to Kasa Robinson for ending up with eight also. Jaz with just one grab in 22 minutes is a bit disappointing, but she led everyone on the court with five steals. Louisville won the game, barely took the rebounding battle, but I'm offering just a small case "r" here...when an opponent shoots just 29%, I'd expect a lot larger "grab" differential than two.

EFFICIENCY/EXECUTION -- When you build up a 42-point lead and win by 34, a lot of things are going right for you. The Cards shot 47.7% from the floor, has 23 assists on 31 made baskets and committed just 10 turnovers. And, only three of these were from the starters. They went to war in the paint most of the game and won points-in-the-paint 32-20. Taking the categories points-off-turnovers (19-13), second-chance points (13-9) and fast break points (17-2) easily allows me to deem a CAPITAL "E" in this category. 

DEFENSE. It was spectacular for 30 of the 40 minutes played. Getting 15 steals. Pitt had 22 turnovers. The visitors shot 29.7% and 21% from the three-point range. I could go on-and-on, but this one was an easy decision to make. CAPITAL "D" for the defense. 


Pitt's head coach Lance White beat almost all of the media except me to the press conference podium and I neglected to bring my auto recording device, so we didn't capture his brief post-game remarks. I asked all the questions after his opening statement, confused him with a couple of, maybe it's good that we didn't get his remarks.

I've put Jared on "Cardinal Couple official post-game social media probation" for lollygagging around and neglecting this important service we try to provide for you. (He's actually been on watch since the start of the season for possible infractions and discrepancies).

i may start looking for someone who can beat my old, hobbled carcass to the media presentation room after a game and record this stuff.  OK, Pitt's head coach was quick on the draw because of radio obligations that followed, but, I need someone who follows the Lion King song title. 

Be prepared. 

@mrandersonjared did manage to show up in time for the Louisville players and Walz. Give him grief on Twitter for me. Those links below. 




Cardinal fans showed up in huge numbers and got what they came for, a exciting game and a dominating Cardinal win.

Despite, Walz's glib post-game comment to my question about the pre-game objective and whether the squad met it of not...(he responded with that the pre-game objective was to score one more point than the foe)...he did go on to say that Louisville did distribute the ball well, get balanced scoring and play shut-down defense. Four player with 12 points each in Shook, Dunham, Balogun and Evans....Jones with 11...and Yacine knocking on the double-digit door with eight. 

So, an expected trouncing of the worst team in the ACC happened. Turn the page, let Lola and Lucy write a "W" on the schedule on the refrigerator.  

Next, is Muffet's mediocre crew in south Bend. Yes, Walz wlll tell you they are a dangerous team, Louisville must be ready and so on and so forth. He gets paid to prepare his team in that "one-game-at-a-time, all-foes-are dangerous" fashion. But, Notre Dame is not dangerous this year and a great opportunity lies ahead to give them a beat-down like Virginia did yesterday afternoon 90-60. 

Cardinal fans are sharks in the water for this one. They smell the out-of-control bleeding going on within the South Bend swimmers and are ready for a Cardinal WBB attack. 

Let's hope the Cardinal players are focused, ready and can give the Irish a significant thumping, despite Walz's carefully thought-out "win by one" pre-game emphasis. 




Sunday, January 26, 2020

Pitt today -- W Tennis downs SEMO St -- Swimming at the YUM -- Batter Up Brunch -- SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE.

Pitt Comes to the Yum!

0-7 in conference, 3-15 overall.  Honestly, and trying to be a respectful as possible, that may be about all you need to know about Pitt before today's later afternoon matchup.

The Panthers come in with wins only against Central Connecticut State, Fairleigh Dickinson, and Ole Miss.  UCF beat them by 14, Georgetown by 10, and Duquesne by 19.  None of these are strong teams in overall NCAA play.  In conference, loses have come by margins of eight to UNC, eight to Notre Dame, nine to Boston College, 12 to Virginia Tech, eight to Clemson, 18 to Syracuse, and to NC State?  Well, that one may have gotten an R rating for being just gruesome.  The Wolfpack ran off with a 22-0 run to start the 3rd quarter and won the overall quarter 30-4 on their way to a 88-44 finish.

The only main statistical category that Pitt is beating it's opponents is rebounding.  They do have that edge on both the defensive and offensive side, though the offensive rebounding margin is razor thing on the season.  Aysia Bugg is the scoring leader, averaging 13 per game, close behind is a committee of Amber Brown, Dayshanette Harris, and Gabbie Green, all scoring between 9.9 and 9.5 points per game.  Starting in the post, look for Cara Judkins, she's good for the highest scoring percentage on the team, but it's only 4.5 per game.  At 6'2", I don't think she'll provide a huge challenge for Kylee or Bionca.

Wins are what is looked for in the season, and this should be a relatively easy one.  I hope that Coach Walz can use this one for some teaching time with a little less pressure on getting the team into the winning side of the scoreboard.  We've all watched and cheered as this team has started to "figure it out", but there's still quite a ways to go on that journey.  While the level of competition plays into some of that, it can also be nice to have a less pressure filled game to give players a chance to make mistakes, play through them, and learn from the experiences.

A feel-good romp should make for a fun time in the KFC Yum! Center this afternoon.  It's a 4pm tip and is on the ACC Network, so there is no need for streaming today.

Tennis Back in Action

South East Missouri State comes to Louisville for a double-header today vs Mark Beckham's Tennis squad.

I haven't caught up much with the Tennis team this year, but they are transfer-laden, with seven of the 10 players on the roster listed as having transferred from another University, and also have a significant international flair, having a pair of Argentinians, a Russian, a Canadian (Toronto), and a Bosnian.

The first matchup starts with the doubles as always at 10am, and the second matchup will be at 1pm.  Live streaming of the matches should be available at:

At the time of this writing, it appears only one of the six courts actually has live video up and running.

Swimming and Diving

It was a the Battle of the Bluegrass, pool party style, yesterday at the Ralph Wright Natatorium.  Our intrepid photographer, Jared was in attendance early, before scooting over to the Cardinal Couple Radio Hour recording.  All reports was that it was an absolute jam packed house, with at least parts of 5 or 6 other sports teams in attendance to cheer on their colleagues against the Wildcats.

The teams split in the results, with the Kentucky women getting the best of the Louisville women with total scores of 160.5 to 139.5.  The Louisville men managed a similar margin of the Wildcats with a total score of 165 to 135.

On the women's side, we got wins from Arina Openysheva in the 100 free, Christiana Regenauer in the 100 fly, and Lainey Visscher in the 50 free.  The three of them, plus Casey Fanz narrowly edged out the wildcats to get the win in the 400 free relay.  The margin of victory was less than two tenths of a second in a nearly three and a half minute long race.

In (well, mostly above) the diving end of the pool, Molly Fears was just edged in the 1 meter board competition, but did come out on top in the 3 meter.

You can see more of Jared's pictures from the event below.

The Swim and Dive team will be back in action Friday with Indiana coming to the Ralph Wright.

Softball Batter Up Brunch

Louisville Softball held their pre-season Batter Up Brunch at the PNC Club yesterday and Paulie and Sonja were there to attend and catch the words.

Sean Moth handled the P.A. duties in his always informative fashion

A great time it was. Here are some audio links from the event:  Vince Tyra made some opening remarks, Alicja Wolny delivered the keynote speaker address and there was a great video about the squad that the attendees got to see while they dined. Celene Funke did a Q&A with selected members of the squad, including Eden Mayo, Catlin Ferguson, Chardonnay Harris and Holly Aprile ended the program with her comments about the event, team and upcoming season.

It was a splendid time for all, and a silent auction was also available for attendees.









Cardinal Couple Radio Hour

It's a little bit of two steps forward and one step back.  We had four of us in the recording booth at the Louisville Northeast Regional Library branch, and with the added input, I found a new technical glitch.  Poor Jared, the audio interface they have had the 3rd and 4th channels turned off.  Case, Paulie, and I started on channels one and two, plus a separate USB mic, meaning for the first part of the show, Jared is awfully hard to hear.  I did give him my mic to use as I struggled to find the cause of the problem (and you can tell in my extremely distracted responses to prompts from Paulie).  We did find, and fix, the problem after the show.  So this continues to be a learning process.  In any case, you can check out the show below.