Louisville Hosts Syracuse
In a semi-surprising move, Louisville Women's Basketball will be playing their scheduled game tonight against Syracuse at 7:00 p.m. The Cards are back after a one-game pause from a COVID-19 outbreak.
You can catch this game online on ACC Network Extra and it is rumored our favorite attack Yorkie, Jess Laemmle, will be on the call tonight. Let's hope those rumors are true! You can also tune into 790-AM WKRD to hear Nick Curran and AJ give you the most brilliant basketball radio call in these 50 states.
What we currently don't know is everyone available for the game. It's a long shot to see the full roster on the bench and active for the game in such a quick turnaround. We also don't know which players will be on limited minutes as they are still on the recovery process.
We don't know too much about Syracuse either. With a roster that's made up of mostly new faces for the Orange and a brand new coach, this is a much different team than we've seen in the past. The Orange are 8-7 on the year and 1-4 in conference play. They dropped 116 on Central Connecticut State and have won five games by 30 or more points as well as beating a ranked Ohio State team by six. They also have some really bad losses with four losses being by 20 or more points. Inconsistency has been their theme.
Syracuse has a strong offense, averaging 76.1 points per game, second in the ACC. They also rank last in the conference in points allowed per game at 69.0. They average a lot of steals (10.9), shoot well from three (8.2 made three-pointers per game), and have been fantastic from the free throw line (78.6 percent).
The Orange have four players averaging double figures in scoring. Teisha Hyman (14.8) and Chrislyn Carr (14.2) have been the top two scorers. Seven different players average 3.0 rebounds per game or better. Their assist-turnover ratio is almost 1.0 exactly.
It's hard to say how this game will go due to the fact of uncertainty on who is available for the Cards as well as the up-and-down season Syracuse has had.
Louisville's defense has been incredible this year and I expect will be the difference maker. The Cards have almost two starting lineups worth of players who can step in on a moments notice on defense and be fine.
Offensively, Louisville has still being trying to find themselves. We've seen many different players step up with hot shooting nights including Emily Engstler, Hailey Van Lith, Kianna Smith, and Payton Verhulst. Finding fast break opportunities from a strong defense will help the Cards get a rhythm going on offense.
If you choose to avoid going to the game due to your own COVID-19 concerns- numbers have skyrocketed since the holidays- we certainly understand and won't blame you. If you do choose to go, although masks are not required, I highly recommend wearing one. It's not just members of team that have been dealing with COVID-19 situations. Multiple members of the media/photographers and several spirit squad members have been dealing with issues too.
Let's see what happens at tonight's game and hope for a win!
Hailey Van Lith
The NIL regulations have afforded student-athletes great opportunities. Hailey Van Lith is one of those student-athletes. She is the first Louisville player ever to be able to sell and profit off her name on a Louisville jersey while being an active student.
HVL has her #10 jerseys for sale in a partnership with Retro Brand. At $135.00 for the hand-stitched numbered jerseys, it's a bit out of my price range, but to cover the Louisville Cardinals copyright, the price has to be high. She does have some t-shirts out there too for a much cheaper price.
Whether you plan to buy HVL's shirts/jerseys or not, it's cool to see this step taken for student-athletes to be able to take control of their own lives.