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Sunday, March 26, 2023

Elite Eight vs Iowa, Lax Falls to the Cuse, SB Leads the Pack - Sunday Cardinal Couple

Elite Eight vs Iowa


(Photos by Jared Anderson, Cardinal Couple Photographer extraordinaire)

With UConn's loss yesterday to Ohio State, Louisville now holds the longest streak of consecutive Elite Eight appearances in the league at five.

That appearance will be tonight at 9pm against Iowa.  These teams have only met twice, in a home and home series in the 2013-14, and 2014-25 seasons.  The Cards won both games, with the most recent being at the KFC Yum! Center in December of 2014.  Both games had similar totals, 86-52, 83-53.  We can only hope today's results are much the same.

Iowa holds a 29-6 record to this point, with those losses to Kansas St., UConn, NC State, Illinois, IU, and Maryland.

We all know about Caitlin Clark, and with good reason as she is an excellent player, a 47% shooter, 38% from three point range, and 84% from the free throw line, averaging almost 27 points per game - just gaudy numbers.  Backing her up, is Monika Czinano, a 6'3" big that hits 68%, but don't expect any of those from range.  She does average almost 17 and a half points per game, though.  The only other player in double digits is McKenna Warnock at just shy of 11 per game, at 49% from the field, and 39% from three range.

The Louisville game plan for this one is pretty clear.  Stop, or at least slow down, Caitlin Clark.  That, of course, is easier said than done.  The National storylines will probably be pitting Hailey Van Lith against Clark, at least notionally, if not expecting HVL to be guarding Clark.  I posit that Mykasa Robinson would be the better player to guard Clark.  Either player gives up about five inches to Clark, but Kasa has never shied away from matchups like that, and her intense defensive play will be what's needed to counter Clark.  Perhaps we see the re-emergent Morgan Jones covering Clark some as well, as Jones' quickness could certainly be useful there.

Both tournament games tonight are on ESPN, with Miami vs LSU tipping off at 7pm, and our game vs Iowa starting at 9pm for another late-night game watch.

Softball Tames the Wolfpack

Another weekend of softball with it's schedule altered by weather.  After Friday's monsoons prevented play, Louisville and NC State played a double-header yesterday.  The Cards won both, 7-4 in the first game, and a five inning run-rule win in the second 13-0.
Ally Alexander at the hot corner.

Alyssa Zabala got the start in the first inning and pitches 4.1 before Taylor Roby took over the duties for the last 2.2.

NC State got started early with a run in the first inning, but UofL would answer just as quickly.  With Korbe Otis and Hannah File both reaching safely, Taylor Roby added to her already impressive home run tally put a three up on the scoreboard.

Korbe Otis sliding into third
NC State would tie it in the top of the 3rd with a solo shot on the first pitch of the inning, followed up by another run with some smaller ball play.  Louisville would re-take the lead in the bottom half of the frame when Hannah File took the ball for a ride to the right center field berm.  This would be the first of two home runs for File on the day.

In the bottom of the fifth, Louisville would finally get some separation that would stay.  Korbe Otis and Sarah Gordon would both reach with singles, and Otis would get back home on a Roby single.  A Daisy Hess single loaded up the bases, and Ally Alexander would get a single to score Mia Forsythe, pinch running for Roby, and Gordon to tack on another three in the inning.

Roby would walk a pair in the top of the 6th, and allow a run on a single, but then pitched three straight strikeouts to end NC State's scoring for the day.

Sam Booe got the start in the second game of the double-header and every inning of the game would see an out on NC State from a fielding play such as a fly out or a ground out, and two strikeouts.  Booe pitched four of those innings, and Cassie Grizzard pitched the 5th.  On the other side of the plate, Louisville would score at least two in all four of the innings that they batted in the run-rule decision.

(Hannah File finishes a trip around the diamond)
Korbe Otis started it all off with a triple and would score on a Sarah Gordon single.  Hannah File joined the basepaths with a walk, and she and Gordon would end up both in scoring position on a wild pitch.  Gordon would get home on a Daisy Hess sacrifice play.

The second inning started out at the very bottom of the lineup for the Cards, where Paige Geraghty put a nice single up the middle. 
Daisy Hess lays down a bunt.

At the top of the order, Otis drew a walk.  Gordon hit a hard hit shot right back at the pitcher that was caught, Otis had started running and needed to tag back at first but was most of the way to second already.  The NC State first baseman missed the catch however, letting Otis not only get back to tag first, but then advance to third.  Meanwhile, Geraghty scored.  Otis then scored on a wild pitch.  Next up, Hannah File got that second homerun of the day.

In the third inning, Geraghty and Otis both reached successfully and were brought home with Sarah Gordon's shot out to center field.

Paige Geraghty slides into home.
The fourth inning started with a walk for Easton Lotus, and a pair of singles by Ally Alexander and Pickle Winkler.  Lotus would be out at home with the force, but leaving the bases loaded.  An Otis single scored Winkler and Alexander.  Gordon reached on an NC State error, scoring Geraghty, then File would sacrifice to get Otis home and Roby would finish off the RBIs, with a double that brought Gordon home.

Softball will be back in action today with a 12:30 start against the Wolfpack.  Come out and enjoy beautiful Ulmer Stadium, or catch the action on the ACC Network Extra.


Lacrosse welcomed the number one team in the country, Syracuse, in to the Louisville Lacrosse Stadium, and the result unfortunately highlighted the quality of the opponent.

The Cuse's Emma Tyrrell had a hat trick in just over five minutes of play, and the Orange would lead 6-0 by about halfway through the first quarter before Louisville could break through for a goal.  Chalk that one up to Hannah Morris.

It would be almost two thirds of the way through the second quarter before the Cards would score again, with Nicole Perroni extending her now 30 game strong scoring streak. Syracuse would go to halftime with a 12-2 lead, however.

Hannah Morris would score a second goal in the last few minutes of the 3rd quarter. And some signs of life in the waning few minutes of the game, but far too little, and far too late, but Izzy Seikel would score a pair to bring the Louisville total to five, but Syracuse had scored five of their own for the final score of 17-5.  Small consolation, perhaps, that Louisville tied Syracuse in the second half of play.

Louisville will look to get back on the horse with a Tuesday visit to Ohio State in Columbus.  That game starts at 4pm and there is currently no listing for video for it.

Friday Volleyball

(Knee injury?  What knee injury?)
Some quick notes here with Volleyball starting their spring exhibition schedule on Friday.  They welcome in the Kentucky Wildcats and, of course, had to go to five sets to get the win, because it wouldn't be UofL vs UK in volleyball without a five set match.  A funny moment after the fourth set, with the set scores tied 2-2, the coaches asked the teams if they wanted to play the fifth as it's not uncommon in spring play to only play four sets, even if they end tied.  All of the players, pretty much in unison, responded in the affirmative, with a tone that suggests they thought the coaches were crazy for even asking - of course they wanted to see this one to the end.

Not going to do a real recap of this, but will throw out a few observations.

(Hannah Sherman (11), Charitie Luper (23) and
Elle Glock (5) celebrate together.)
First, Anna DeBeer's knee recovery is going great.  She has no complaints about any pain or motion limitation at this point.  She is still wearing the knee brace, but has apparently been instructed to keep wearing that for two year after the injury.  So the brace will be with her for a while, but at this point, it's merely preventative for any re-injury.

Charitie Luper is a sophomore transfer joining us from UCLA, and you're going to like her play.  At 5'9" she's rather undersized for an outside hitter, but if you weren't paying attention to that, you wouldn't have noticed.  She has a great bit powerful serve, plays all six rotations, blocks well, and of course, hits well.  Coming in effectively as a replacement for Claire Chaussee, she gives up three inches of height, but nothing else.

(Aiko Jones and Hannah Sherman say, "Nope.")
Elle Glock got the lion's share of the setting duties, but we did see Alexis Finnvold in control some, as well as much of the third set where they were running a 6-2 offense.  So who was the other right side in the 6-2 as a counterpart to Aiko Jones?  Nina Moorer.  In addition to playing some time on the left side, she slid over to the right to provide the extra hitting option in the 6-2 and did a fine job.

We got pretty much even playing time in the middle between Cara Crese, PK, and Hannah Sherman.  All looked great.  Sherman had a few missed assignments on blocks, still learning the blocking schemes, I guess, but she did have several very impressive roofs.

Otherwise, it's mostly rinse and repeat.  We still have a transfer setter set to join the team probably in June, but we're in good shape for another good season of Volleyball in the fall.

The spring schedule continues this Friday at 6pm with a team from the Athletes Unlimited Pro Volleyball league continuing their spring exhibition schedule against various college teams who have players playing in the AU roster of players.  Erin Fairs is expected to be in the AU starting lineup for this matchup.  I got the chance to speak with Fairs in Omaha at the Volleyball Final Four and she was very excited about getting to return at play back in Louisville.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

(no...Kim did not join us for our podcast but she sent
her outfit with plumes over. We couldn't get it to talk...)

We had four of us on the call yesterday, with Jared heading out to try to get pictures and avoid getting blown away by the winds at Lacrosse.  We talked a lot of basketball, softball, lacrosse, and touched just a bit on volleyball.

Always a good time, check it out at any decent podcast directory or at it's home link, now at Spotify, at:

-- JMcA


  1. Curious to see if we play or standard switching type defense or if the mad scientist digs into his bag of gimmicks and does a box and one type of defense for a stretch?
    At any rate, we're going from a team that relied more on their defense to one that relied more on their offense, because Iowa gives up I think over 70 ppg.

    And softball is looking pretty darn good this year, working on another sweep. Not sure how many they had last year but going for two in a row👍

  2. The formatting IS pretty rough to get through in some sections, I think most of us have come to realize that the Saturday and Sunday articles here are almost always mid-morning and I usually go to other websites to get my information before it appears here.

    At least the photos are unique and quality. You guys definitely need to step your weekend game up.

    Nick O

  3. no cardinal couple pick 'em update?

  4. All I can do is offer my tally on the top 25 in the Pick 'Em. Our bracket czar is busy taking selfies...

    43-13 Karen J, Jared
    42-14 Jason, KStark, Jeff, Wahoo Card
    41-15 Kenny S, Katy, Daryl, Sonja
    40-16 Paulie, David W, Joe Hill, Thomas, Faris
    39-17 Arthur, Case
    38-18 Blue Lou, Vivian, Curtis, Mike D
    36-20 Cindy
    35-21 Nick O, Becky, Chimps


  5. It's crazy all year long I'm watching to see if the cards get ranked in the AP top 25.
    The crazy thing about rankings like it determines how far your team's going to make it how good your team is how good your team is playing it's amazing the things when you're ranked and then you accomplish the same things when you're unranked wow!

    Cards are playing well as a team everyone has stepped up big time the bigs are playing well we got people making clutch shots Go Cards go
    The mission key to Victory slowing down the Dynamic Duo Catalina Clark & Monika Czinano!

  6. Hate the late game, was there not an option to start these around 1 or 2 PST?

    1. It's SUNDAY, why so late???

    2. ESPN has college softball, mock drafts and other far less interesting crap to air beside women's basketball. Now that Geno and UConn are gone, they don't care. Rebecca Lobo has probably locked herself in a room and won't come out until the results of the game are changed. LSU, Miami, UofL and Iowa don't mean crap to ESPN. No ratings there for them there on the East Coast.

  7. Watching the softball on ACCNX. Holly's a horrible base coach. Neither runner she sent had a chance of scoring.

    Blue Lou

    1. See they walked off in the ninth👍

    2. She really like aggressive baserunning, and generally, it works out pretty well for them. Definitely a couple of misses there, but they got it done in the end.


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