LIZ DIXON'S 15 LEAD LOUISVILLE PAST MUSTANGS
Defense was the name of the game for Louisville women's basketball Tuesday night in the 72-32, 40-point win over Cal Poly and Liz Dixon came off the bench to score 15 points in the win.
It wasn't the best of starts for the Cards, falling behind 4-0 early, but a 10-0 Cardinals run put them ahead to stay. 6-20 shooting won't win you many contests against good opponents, admittedly, but Olivia Cochran gave the Cards five first quarter point as the Cards ended the first ten minutes ahead 14-9. Louisville held the Mustangs to 25% shooting in the first session.
Louisville got a nice boost from the bench in the second quarter and Ahlana Smith and Norika Konno hit threes to help the Cards start to pull away from the Big West opponent. The defense was still spot on in shutting down the Mustangs offense and UofL used a 20-7 scoring margin in the second quarter to build a comfortable 34-16 lead at the half. The Cards were a little sloppy, honestly, in the offensive execution at times in the first 20 minutes, committing 11 turnovers, but Walz had already used 10 of his 13 players in the contest and, as a team, they had held Cal Poly to 19,4% shooting.
The Cards guards got untracked in the third quarter and came up with 12 of Louisville's 18 third quarter points as Louisville continued to increase the lead. Haliey Van Lith had five of her nine points in quarter three and Louisville shot 61.5% in the ten minutes after halftime. After three quarters, Louisville held a 52-23 lead and Cal Poly's shooting woes continues with just 2-14 shooting in the third quarter.
Walz rested Van Lith, Engstler and Hall in the final quarter, the Cards got 10 minutes from Merissah Russell and nine minutes from Payton Verhulst and coasted in with a 20-9 scoring advantage in the final 10 minutes to win 72-32. Russell nailed a three and Dixon added four more points to give her a team high 15 points for the game. And, she did it in just 13 minutes on the court. Verhulst, Schetnan, Russell, Konno and Parker closed the game out for the Cards, the crowd gave homecoming Kianna Smith a nice round of applause when she departed the game and Louisville had accomplished a convincing 40-point win...winning the 4th quarter 20-9.
THE FRED REPORT
|(The late Fred Rogers is our Fred today. It was a beautiful win in California-hood)|
FREE THROWS -- Not a lot of free throw chances for either team in the contest, Louisville went to the line just five times and made three of the attempts. The 60% foul stripe shooting falls below our 70C% mandate for a letter, so, no letter here.
REBOUNDS -- The taller Cards held a 49-36 edge on the boards overall, but only a 24-22 edge at the end of the first half. Engstler led the way with nine grabs and Cochran recorded seven. Outrebounding your opponent by 13 is good for a CAPITAL "R" by my reckoning.
EFFORT/EXECUTION -- 20 turnovers against a team like Cal Poly is too many, but 47% shooting is a nice effort on the road. Three pointers are still a quandry, the Cards made just 7 out of 26 (26.9%) but Kianna was hot, hitting three of her six. 19 assists on 31 baskets isn't bad, but Louisville missed way too many layups. I award a small case "e" here.
DEFENSE -- This is where Louisville shone Tuesday night. They held Cal Poly to 20% shooting, forced 23 turnover and had 12 steals and seven blocked shots. No problem in awarding a CAPITAL "D'' for the defensive effort.
FINAL FRED TALLY: -_R-e-D
So, a game that I thought the Cards would win easily and they di, after a bit of a sluggish start. The Cards are in mid-season form defensively and that's good to see. The offensive could still use a bit of work, but, wins are wins and this was a good one Tuesday night.
VOLLEYBALL AT PITT
The highly anticipated re-match between Louisville Volleyball and Pitt takes place tonight at Pitt's Fitzgerald Fieldhouse today at 5 p.m..today.
The match will be shown on the ACC Network. #1 vs. #3.
We've talked about this one at length, basically since the Cards took the first contest between the two that Louisville won in the LNFCU.
It's a match that has nationwide interest and should be a fun one to watch. Let;s hope our Cards can leave Pitt with the "W". I expect a five set thriller. Jared will recap it Thursday.