DANA EVANS CAREER DAY LEADS LOUISVILLE TO 96-61 WIN
Dana Evans had a career high 29 points and her #2 ranked Louisville Cardinals easily handled the rematch against visiting UT Martin SkyHawks Tuesday afternoon 96-61 in the KFC YUM! Center. Evans nailed her first two three-point attempts in the contest and had 11 points in the first 5:40 of the first quarter to propel the Cards to an early 15-9 lead.
Louisville cruised out to an early 21-13 first quarter lead and the Cards showed no signs of slowing down in the next ten minutes. And, Evans remained hot. In a 28-11 Cardinal edge in the second quarter, Evans added 11 more points and UofL WBB went into the locker room comfortably ahead 49-24. Or, you could look at it as Evans 22 - UTM 22. She took nine first half shots. Eight went in. She took five three pointers. All of those went in. Add three assists and two steals to her performance and you had a very decent game for anyone for 40 minutes. In basketball, finding the "hot" hand and feeding the hot hand is paramount to success. And, when her teammates "found" her...Dana delivered.
The Cards were also getting it done defensively, allowing just 30.4% shooting for the visitors from Martin, TN. Louisville had shut down leading scorer Chelsey Perry to just two points on 1-5 shooting and former Card Seygan Robins still hadn't put one through the hoop after 20 minutes, The Louisville transition game was running on all eight cylinders, the Cards were dominating in the paint (a 22-6 scoring edge) and UTM already had 11 turnovers, which led to 14 Cardinal points.
And, it wasn't a case of Walz just using his starting five to inflict the damage. 10 Cardinals in all saw action in the first 20 minutes and nine of them saw at least five minutes of court time.
One wondered if Louisville's intensity might drop off a bit in the second half, but it did not. The Cards put together a 29-19 third quarter performance to hold a 78-43 lead with 10 minutes remaining. Kianna Smith and Hailey Van Lith picked up the scoring attack and the Cards shot 61% in the third session and made five of their seven three point attempts.
The newly activated Malea Williams decided to thrill the fans in the final quarter. She scored Louisville's final seven points of the game, grabbed three rebounds and blocked a shot in her six minutes of court time. Louisville maintained the 35-point advantage and picked up their eighth win of the season in front of an announced 2754 fans in attendance.
It was a nice win, thanks to UTM for agreeing to the game and keep 'em coming, Cards.
THE FRED REPORT
|It was a beautiful day in the neighborhood|
for UofL WBB yesterday.
FREE THROWS -- A good day from the charity stripe for seven Cards who attempted them. 17 for 19 is 89% and very acceptable by our standards. Evans, Van Lith, Cochran, Williams and Dixon were perfect in their combined 15 attempts. NO HESITATION IN AWARING A CAPITAL "F" HERE.
REBOUNDING -- A 39-28 advanatage for the Cards in grabs. No one had more than six (Cochran). What is most impressive is that the Cards had 12 offensive rebounds compared to just five for UTM. Liz Dixon and Norika Konno had three offensive rebounds each. WE'LL AWARD A CAPITAL "R" FOR THE BOARDS SUPERIORITY.
EFFORT/EXECUTION -- Louisville shot 49.3 % for the afternoon (33-67) and a much improved 13-26 (50%) from beyond the arc. Besides Evans 6 for 7 accuracy, Kianna Smith was on target as well, making three of her four threes. The Cards had just nine turnovers and any time you can keep that stat under double digits, a tip-of-the-hat is in order. A CAPITAL "E" FOR THE ACCURACY AND PRECISION.
DEFENSE -- Allowing 61 points was a bit better than the 67 allowed the first time the two squads met. Louisville had 10 steals, forced 18 turnovers and held UTM leading scorer Perry in check for three quarters with just 11 points for her. A team effort that WILL EARN THEM A CAPITAL "D".
FINAL FRED TALLY: F-R-E-D
It was announced during Jeff Walz's post-game presser that the Cards would be travelling to Blacksburg, VA to face Kenny Brooks' 6-2 Virginia Tech squad for a Thursday 8 p.m. contest. Louisville was originally scheduled to host the Hokies on Jan. 28th., but in this card-shuffling, free-for-all scheduling circus that COVID has brought about, the Cards pick up a game against a VT squad that has lost their last two (at Notre Dame and hosting FSU). We'll always take a "game-added" instead of a game cancelled.
We also got news of two games being re-scheduled, Miami and FSU. Those two will visit the KFC YUM! Center (let's hope...)
We'll take it. It's games, it's good opponent and it's a conference foes -- When the Cards face VT tomorrow, it'll be only the second ACC member Louisville has played this season.
Jared will prep you for it tomorrow. Have a wonderful Wednesday!