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!!

Thursday, August 31, 2023


Good morning readers and welcome back to gameday! Daryl covering the Cards this Thursday for you.  

 There’s a 3-way shake up of this week’s posts as I will be heading out of town this morning, Jared and Case have graciously volunteered to move things around to accommodate my shenanigans. 

(Editor note...the Cardinal Couple staff is dong their best to keep this tottering old fart confused and disoriented, I spent the first two hours this morning thinking it was Friday because it was a Daryl article and Daryl writes on Friday. I'm  sure my neighbors got a big kick out of watching me roll our trashcan out to the side of the street, dressed in my blue boxer shorts and flip flops, hoping I didn't miss Friday pickup. The little old lady across the street DID give me a wink, though. I rest my case. --paulie)

Shoutout to the last day of August already. It seems to be true, the days are long but the years are short. Try to enjoy it while you can.
Fingers crossed Hilton Head Island is still there by the time we get to town or the bride and groom may turn into some notorious ‘Zillas.


Illinois vs Louisville
Lynn Stadium
7:30pm on ACCNX

WSOC welcomes Illinois to Lynn Stadium this evening. The Cardinals are still searching for a win on the 2023 season as they sport an 0-2-2 record while the Illini boast a 2-0-1 record. 

The two faced a similar foe in Xavier where the Cards fell 0-2 on August 20th and the Illini won a week ago 1-0 over the #17 ranked Musketeers.

Illinois midfielder Lia Howard connected on the goal on a pass from Sydney Stephens in the 42nd minute of the match. The Illinois defense held Xavier to just 2 shots on goal in the match and none in the final 20 minutes.

In the season opener against Indiana State, the Cardinals did not allow a shot as they shutout the Sycamores. It was the first time since 2019 that the Cardinals did not allow a single shot in a game. In the most recent game against Northern Kentucky, the Cardinals allowed only four shots and kept the Norse off the scoreboard.

The lone goal of the season for Louisville was by Ravin Alexander scored an equalizer for the Cardinals in the 59th minute vs the Dayton Flyers.

It should be a beautiful night for WSOC and Paulie and Jared will be there for Cardinal Couple crew coverage!


Louisville Softball announced Wednesday their fall matchups.  

The fall slate opens with a doubleheader on the road against Ohio State. The first pitch takes place at noon on Sept. 24 in Columbus, OH with the second game to follow.

The Cardinals will play host to Eastern Kentucky the following weekend to kick off the home slate. The first game of the doubleheader is set to begin at 1 p.m. on Oct. 1.

Louisville will then travel to Bloomington, Ind. to play rivals Indiana University in a doubleheader at 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 13.

Wrapping up the season, the Cards will host the Miami (Ohio) on Oct. 29 to face RedHawks in a doubleheader at 1 p.m.

Have a great Labor Day weekend, everyone!  

As Always, 
Go Cards

Wednesday, August 30, 2023




{The trophy presentation committee reconvened to deliberate and...drink.)

I GOT AN E-MAIL a couple of weeks ago asking me whatever happened to my Player of the Week designations I used to do here at the site. Truth be told, I just kinda forgot about the award and it took a reader to jolt my memory back to the award. Senility is the only excuse I can offer. 

Now that the fall season has sprung back into action and we have scores, events and results to discuss and weigh, I had a bit of indecision on who to give the inaugural 2023 honor to. Anna deBeer certainly was a contender, because of her big weekend in the Cardinal Volleyball Classic, but....I decided to go with Merlijn van der Vegt. She's the goalkeeper on the Field Hockey squad. 

The Cards pitched a shutout against #2 Northwestern on Sunday at Northwestern and Merlijn was a major part of helping produce that blanking with nine saves. 

van der Vegt is new to the Cardinals this season, coming in as a graduate student. She spent their previous collegiate eligibility at Hofstra. Merlijn also ran cross-country a couple years at Hofstra, in addition to finishing ninth in all-time saves on the turf.... with over 300. Hofstra, of course, is located on Long Island, the change in venue from Atlantic Ocean to Ohio River was probably pretty intense for van der Vegt. 

Merlijn is from Utrecht, The Netherlands originally and aspires to work in a clinic with minority and disadvantaged children when they hit the working world. Them was on the Dutch U18 teams from 2016-18 and majored in psychology at Hofstra. It is noted in the player biography at GoCards that the "they, them, theirs" for her non-binary identity should be applied.. They had two saves in the Cards season opener vs. Northeastern and  won the goalkeeping battle in the summer over freshman Emily Young. and sophomore Logan Jancerak. The way Merlijn played against Northwestern, "they" is an apt description, it seemed like their were three goalkeepers out, as busy as they was. 

(Somewhere, my sophomore English teacher at UofL is holding her head in agony and filling her copy of my article with red "x's". yellow magic marker strikethroughs and wry, sarcastic comments...lambasting my incorrect pronoun assignments)

I'm going to try and make this a weekly feature.(the award, not praising Merlijn) here at the site and, if you have a nominee for any week, let me know by I can consider your case before my Wednesday article. 

The Louisville Field Hockey squad is riding high on that win and van der Vegt's performance was incredible. We've already started referring to them as "Merlijn the Magician". 

Peace be with you this Wednesday. It is National lemon juice today, so sent a squirt my way...



Tuesday, August 29, 2023

The Good, The Good, and The Ugly -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

The Good, The Good, and The Ugly

"Where's this Lynn Stadium they're talking about?"

There's no Clint Eastwood on Floyd Street, but for two of Louisville's fall women's sports teams, he's not needed. Both Louisville volleyball and Louisville field hockey have had strong starts to the year while Louisville women's soccer has had a tough first few weeks.

The Good -- Part One

Louisville Volleyball went 3-0 on the weekend, losing just one set the entire Cardinal Classic. Troy has an rpi way down towards the bottom of the league and the Cards disposed of them with little trouble. Ranked Washington State was the second time on the weekend slate. Not every set was easy but the Cards put on a show in the second set and had the volleyball world talking. Whether it was exhaustion or simply overlooking an opponent, Wright State proved to be the biggest test. The Raiders took the first set and played the other sets close.

A perfect start to the season and moving up a spot in the AVCA rankings to #3 is nice. They have another "warm-up" weekend over Labor Day weekend where UofL should be heavily favored in all three matches.

The Other Good

Louisville Field Hockey opened their season with back-to-back victories in about a 32-hour span. Friday night storms pushed the season opener against Northeastern to Saturday morning. Things were tight in the first half with a 1-1 score before the Cards cranked it up a notch with a pair of fourth quarter goals to secure the win. UofL then hopped on a bus to head up to just north of Chicago for a match-up against reigning Big 10 champs, #2 Northwestern. The defense shined (Wow! to the goalkeeping by van der Vegt) and Louisville needed just one goal to pull off the big upset on the road.

An assumed win and a surprise win showed how this Louisville team is capable of, relying on another strong defensive unit. The Cards continue their road trip for a while longer as they face #10 Princeton and Penn this coning weekend.

The Ugly

Louisville Women's Soccer has not been able to find a win after four games. Arguably their two easiest matches of the year came at home against Indiana State and Northern Kentucky. Both of those ended in 0-0 draws. Their road matches were a 2-0 loss to Xavier and a 2-1 loss to Dayton. Defensively, Louisville has looked decent with the exception of the occasional miscommunication on who is responsible for whom. The offense appears to have seen its shadow and gone back into hiding, something that needs to be addressed sooner than later.

Most of us believed the Cards would already have at least a couple wins on the schedule so an 0-2-2 start is surprising, disappointing and a bit frightening. The schedule doesn't get easier going forward and ACC play is never kind. Illinois is next on the schedule, when the Illini visit Dr Mark and Cindy Lynn Stadium Thursday night.

Maybe it's time to hold a séance for Italian film director Sergio Leone, who was the mastermind behind THE GOOD THE BAD AND THE UGLY and several other Clint Eastwood spaghetti westerns.  Maybe channel a script where the Cards WSOC gunslingers actually gun down an opponent on Floyd St. Maybe even at high noon...the town-folk are waiting. 

(PHOTOS FROM THE JARED ANDERSSON COLLECTION) -- except for Clint, of course...
Happy Tuesday and Go Cards!

Monday, August 28, 2023

Sunday successes for Field Hockey and Volleyball..WSOC Ties NKU -- MONDAY CARDINAL COUPLE



It was a quick turnaround for the #9 Louisville Field Hockey squad.. After knocking off Northeastern Saturday morning, the Cards got on a bus and made the five hour drive to Evanston, IL to face the Wildcats. 

Justine Sowry has been pretty proud of her defense so far this season and had all reasons to continue that pride Sunday, as the Cards blanked the Wildcats 1-0.

Sowry spoke after the game:

"I'm very proud of this group right now. This was a great win over a very good Northwestern squad. We absorbed a tremendous amount of pressure and our defense held strong throughout the entire game."

Emilia Kaczmarczyk. scored the lone goal of the contest six minutes into the third quarter off a penalty corner.  

A look at the stats would give one the impression Northwestern won this thing if you hadn't seen the score. They outshot Louisville 21-3 and held a 10-1 shots on goal advantage. A ton of credit goes to Louisville goalkeeper Merlijin van der Vegt, who had some spectacular stops to preserve the shutout.  Northwestern had eight corners, compared to just one for UofL

The Cards, now 2-0, will continue the road swing when they travel to Philly next week to face Princeton on Friday and Penn on Sunday.


"When DeBeer is flowing, good things happen"

No, this isn't a quote from my debauchery-filled fraternity days, it's a reference to Louisville Volleyball senior outside hotter Anna DeBeer (Assumption H.S.) who had 14 kills in the 20-25, 25-18, 25-20, 26-24 win over Wright State to sweep the Cardinal Classic. DeBeer was named MVP of the Cardinal Classic and her hard-hitting style was the main key in the Cards win over a stubborn Wright St, squad. 

The first set loss was a bit of a surprise. Cards were an 8-8 tie early but let that get away from them and trailed by six late at 24-18, A couple of nice kills from DeBeer and PK Kong got Louisville back within four but it was the first set the Cards have lost this season. 20-25.

Louisville looked much better in the second set, The Cards broke open a relatively close one with a four-point swing to make it 19-14, Hannah Sherman delivered the winning kill for the seven-point win. 25-18 

After the halftime break, Wright State came out energized and led early in the set. At 12-10 Wright St., though, the Cards went on a 8-1 run to build a commanding 18-13 lead and DeBeer's kill was the final tally in the five-point victory 25-20

The final set prove to be the most exciting of the match. Louisville went from a 14-14 tie to a 20-15 Wright state lead, but the Cards regrouped and battled back to tie the match at 21 and 23. Who ya gonna call at this point?  (No, not Ghostbusters...Anna DeBeer !! ) She got the final three points of the match for the 26-24 UofL win. 

Wright St. earned the respect to be feared in the Horizon conference. 


The Cards travel next to play in the Mizzou Invitational, where they'll meet South Dakota on Friday, then NKU and Missouri to finish up the weekend. 



In all honesty, there's just not a lot of good stuff to say about this one, except that it wasn't a loss. 

Louisville dominated the stat-sheet, like they did in their other home-game tie earlier this year against Indiana St., but the ball just did not go into the net. 

The Cards had a 21-4 shot edge and a 7-3 shot-on-goal advantage. They had a 5-2 corner kick advantage, Several near-miss opportunities on shots, but there just doesn't seem to be anyone on this team yet that is ready or chosen to step up, take control of the offense and be the go-to scorer. Ravin Alexander saw just 45 minutes of action tonight, she'd be my pick, but...obviously, I am not with the team every day and don't see all the play formation or strategy. Louisville has no problem taking shots, making them seems to be the major issue now. I think you can classify this as a rebuilding year.

It reminds me of the old Jeff Walz story of the youngster coming up to Walz and boasting..."Coach, I'm a shooter." and, Walz replied "Shooters are fine, I prefer makers."

Louisville has one "make" in four games. I'm not ever gonna try to add up the shot attempts. 

The Cards are running out of easy opportunities to get wins and the road ahead had some challenges. Four more non-conference games remain. 

Case, Jared, Sonja and I were at the match. It was decided we would not do a post-game interview with Coach Ferguson-Dayes. That was fine with us, we were trying hard to think of questions we could ask .after a tie .that wouldn't upset her and it appeared the team and the coaches were having a pretty intense meeting on the sidelines after the match.

Louisville (0-2-2) has one goals in 360 minutes this season. Chances are that won't get any better with Illinois coming to town Thursday. 



Happy Monday to you. Today is National Bow Tie Day. If you still have to don the neckgear at your place of work, why not "go with the bow"? 


Sunday, August 27, 2023

Volleyball Wins Top 25 Matchup, Field Hockey Wins --SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Two Wins Yesterday

(photos by Jared Anderson)

Field Hockey

Well, we weren't expecting to recap a Field Hockey game today.  The 9am start time yesterday was certainly unusual, but it was definitely making the best of a challenging scenario.  Originally scheduled for a 5pm start on Friday, with scorching temperatures expected, the teams decided to push back the game until 7pm to get out of the heat of the day and direct sunlight.  Alas, storms rolled into the area right at 7pm, postponing the game.  Eventually the teams decided to call it for the evening and play the next day (yesterday).  UofL had planned yesterday as a travel day to head to Northwestern for today's game, so the game had to be played early...before UofL hit the road.

With the scene now set, UofL took the stage and delivered a solid performance, beating Northeastern 3-1.  Converting penalty corners has been the biggest bugaboo for this team the past couple of years, but all 3 scores were off of penalty corners, or at least a rebound shot from one.  Let's not say the penalty corner conversion issue is completely solved, the team had 12 attempts and only converted the 3, but that is improvement.

The first came five minutes into the game, with Julie Kouijzer getting the goal.  Aimee Plumb provided the insert, and Minna Tremonti the stop, for Kouijzer to fire home the goal.

Northeastern answered in the 2nd quarter, and the teams would go into halftime tied 1-1.

With no scoring in the 3rd quarter, the Cards would get it going quickly in the 4th.  Mia Duchars was on the insert for this one, with Lara Niebler handling the stop.  Aimee Plumb took the shot and got the goal.

Four minutes later, Aimee's younger, but not smaller, sister Chloe Plumb would get her Cardinals score career underway by deflecting an Emilia Kaczmarczyk shot into the goal.

Jared was there for the game and got postgame comments from Aimee Plumb and Coach Sowry

The Cards are back in action today against the number two team in the country, Northwestern.  The game was originally scheduled for noon, but has been delayed slightly to a 3pm start.  I'm quite sure the harried UofL crew don't mind the delay.


The chaos train continued to roll through the Volleyball Top 25 in the opening weekend, but it didn't make a stop in Louisville as the #4 Cards were able to solidly beat the #21 Washington State Cougars in three last night.

Charitie Luper and PK blocking
Seven of the Top 25 lost Friday, with several more suffering that fate yesterday in what will likely result in rather drastic restructuring of the Top 25 rankings tomorrow.

In that context, the 4 vs 21 matchup took on major national significance, and nearly all eyes were on the ACC Network Extra to watch some of the best volleyball of the weekend.  The Cards took the win 25-19, 25-14, 25-23.

Steph Cantway, color commentator for the match on ACCNX last night, suggested that WSU is under ranked, and frankly, I agree.  The Cougars are a very good team, and likely to see a great deal of success in the fragmenting PAC-12.  I would predict a win, except they do need to get through Stanford to do that, and that will be a tall order.

Cara Cresse from the service line.
The Cards won every statistical category in the match, but most notably blocks at 5-1, and aces at 4-1.

Anna DeBeer led the team in kills with 17, with her fellow left side hitter Charitie Luper putting down 10.  Even more impressive is that DeBeer did that with only a single hitting error and on 29 attempts for a whopping .552 hitting percentage.  That's a high hitter percentage for a middle, PK hit .500 with six kills on 10 attempts with a single error, for comparison, but it is phenomenal for a left side.

Aiko Jones accounted for six kills on 20 attempts with but a single error for a very respectable .250.  Cara Cresse got the only solo block of the match, and joined in on a couple of others while PK, DeBeer, and Luper would all join in on a pair each.

Elena Scott tallied 16 digs in a performance that really should surprise no one that's been watching her play the past two years, but yet still manages to amaze.

Elena Scott one footed setting
If you go back and watch the replay of this one, and I heartily recommend that you do so, definitely check out the nearly minute long rally at 13-11 in the first set.  It starts with an Elena Scott serve, finishes with a Cara Cresse kill.  There's a good bit of awareness by Scott that I was particularly impressed with, though.  The first set for the Cards gets taken by Scott and she was standing just about on the 3 meter line.  As a libero, Scott is not allowed to overhand set from in front of the 3 meter line, so as the ball is arriving, you can see Scott lift her left foot off the floor, leaving her right in contact with the floor, and sets the ball with only one foot on the floor.  It's just an impressive bit of awareness and skill from Scott that is earning her chatter as being one of the, if not the, best libero's in the country.

DBK has, very uncharacteristically, lost all of her
coaches challenges so far this season.
Overall, from this match, as well as Friday night's, the balance of this team is impressive.  It's reflected in the stats sheet as well.  While we had definite go-tos last year, mostly DeBeer, and then Claire Chaussee later in the season, the depth and balance of the attack this year is noticeable.  That extends to setting and right side hitting.  When the coaching staff wants to have a quick chat with Glock in the setting role, they don't sub Brigitta Petrenko for her, instead they wait until she's about to rotate to the front row, and sub Reese Robins for her, and bring in Petrenko for Aiko Jones.  Essentially they shifted into a 6-2 offense briefly, keeping the 3-across attack across the front line, and then swapping back when they've had their chat with Glock and are ready to bring her back in.  That speaks to the depth at multiple positions to be able to do that.

UofL will be back in action this afternoon at 2pm against Wright State to wrap up The Cardinal Classic.  As is typical for UofL volleyball at home, it is a sell-out, and can be watched on ACC Network Extra.

Soccer In Action Today

Karen Ferguson-Dayes Soccer squad will continue to look for offensive production this evening at Dr. Mark and Cindy Lynn Stadium, when Northern Kentucky University comes to play.  First kick is scheduled for 7:30pm and the forecast looks great for an evening out at Lynn stadium

This may not be a pushover game.  The NKU, in exhibition, tied UK 1-1, absolutely blitzed Shawnee State (Ohio) 8-0, and had a scoreless tie with Cincinnati.  They started the season with a 0-1 loss to Western Michigan, tied Bellarmine 3-3, and beat Miami (OH) 1-0.  The Norse aren't exactly set to go with the National Championship, but they are a respectful team, and given the offensive challenges we've seen from our squad, I could easily see this ending in a scoreless tie, or potentially worse.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

Jeff and Case...30 years from now...carrying on without Paulie  

Case, Paulie, and I had a great discussion yesterday, with coverage of Field Hockey, Soccer and Volleyball as you might expect.  But we also had a chat about bikes in Northern European countries, and cargo bikes, and their usage, in particular.

You can check out the fun at or any reasonable podcast directory:

-- JMcA


Elena Scott being everywhere, all at once

Elle Glock wins a joust

Kamden Schrand celebrates with Charitie Luper,
along with Elle Glock and Cara Cresse

Another on-target set from Elle Glock

Phekran "PK" Kong attempts to salvage a
misdirected set

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Volleyball Sweeps; Field Hockey Waits -- SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

FH Season Opener Postponed

After delaying their game from the original afternoon start time due to the heatwave, UofL Field Hockey found themselves at the mercy of another weather event. Right at around the time Friday Night Lights were coming on around Louisville, a massive storm rolled in. Lightning delays cleared high school football stadiums around the area, and the winds, rain, and sometimes hail kept on for a couple of hours. As a result, the news reported game after game was being rescheduled to today or Sunday or canceled outright. One of the postponements that slipped under the radar was the Louisville field hockey game. Louisville and Northeastern moved their game to this morning at 9:00 am. We'll keep you updated on the result and Jeff will give you more information in his write-up tomorrow. The big thing to watch for Louisville is that their road game against Northwestern tomorrow will now begin just about 24 hours after today's game ends. 

Volleyball Sweeps Troy in Chaotic Day 1

While the sky opened up with the air cooling off outside, the action heated up inside the L&N Federal Credit Union Arena. Louisville opened their season by hosting Troy in the first game of the Cardinal Classic. Louisville will get Washington State and Wright State later in the weekend. The Cards were one of the teams that took care of business yesterday on a day when many teams saw themselves on the wrong side of a result. Three results were of major note to Louisville fans, but there were plenty of other upsets. The biggest of all was #1 Texas, who lost 3-1 to unranked Long Beach State. Another major upset was Kentucky's 3-1 loss to Colorado State. Louisville's conference rival, Pittsburgh, fell to BYU 3-1. More results that fans might be interested in include two from WKU, as they upset 12th ranked Marquette 3-1 before being swept by the hosting Dayton Flyers later in the day. Big ranked matches saw #11 Florida beat #8 Penn State 3-1, #9 Oregon swept #13 San Diego, and #2 Wisconsin took down #15 Baylor. While it's not a major upset, Syracuse had a rough day, being swept by both Navy and UAlbany.

I think that's enough of the chaotic results, so let's take a look at Louisville's match. As expected, Elena Scott was back in action this weekend after missing last week for a minor knock. It was an inauspicious start for her, as she committed an attacking error to give Troy a 1-0 lead in the first set. After each team won another point, Troy saw their last lead of the match disappear when Louisville tied it 2-2 and then went up 3-2.  Troy would later be able to hold ties in the third set up to 6-6, but Louisville was pretty well in control from early in the first. Troy was able to string together three 3-point runs in the match, but all three were late in fairly decided sets. One of which came late in the first, but it served only to stave off set point from 24-15. After those points, a service error ended that game at 25-18.

After the men's basketball team (and women's basketball team to some extent) became known for "booming" their opponents in the early-to-mid 2010s, the volleyball team inherited that mantle a bit when Coach Dani Busboom Kelly came on board. Troy got a taste of that in the second. Louisville jumped to a 10-2 lead, traded about 6 points each, then won seven straight to go to 23-8. Brigitta Petrenko led the charge there with two aces, as Louisville played a 6-2 formation. A service error ended the run, and Troy won four of the next five points including that one. The brief run from Troy moved the score to just 24-12, as they again staved off three set points, but Cara Cresse sent the winning kill to the floor. 

The third was tight early, but Louisville used two separate five-point runs to stretch their wings a bit. Troy's short run came a bit earlier, as they weren't on match point during the run. Those three points moved the score to 21-15, but Louisville closed the door by winning four of the next six points. The final in the third was 25-17, giving Louisville a sweep with 25-18, 25-12, and 25-17 scores.

The big performer last night was Cara Cresse. She led the team with 11 kills, doing so on 12 attempts with no errors. Her .917 came alongside four block assists. The visitors definitely keyed on Louisville's pin hitters, opening the way for Cresse. Anna DeBeer was able to find the most space, finishing with 9 kills on 17 attempts with just two kills. Charitie Luper and Aiko Jones were on the back foot, combining for just five kills on 21 attempts. As a team, though, Louisville committed just eight errors to finish with a team hitting percentage of .403. 

Louisville was also positive in the serving game, scoring 11 aces (Petrenko and Elle Glock with three each) and only committing nine serving errors. Charitie Luper and Elena Scott had two aces each. Freshmen Hannah Sherman (redshirt) and Reese Robins both took advantage of their opportunities, as they combined for seven kills on 11 attempts. Defensively, Louisville swamped Troy, as they put up seven blocks to just one for Troy. Troy also managed just one ace to nine errors. They committed 17 hitting errors to finish with just a .138 hitting percentage as a team. 

Louisville is back in action tonight against Washington State at 7PM. The Cougars are ranked 21st and took care of business with a sweep of Wright State yesterday afternoon. The Cards will look to stay off the list of first weekend upsets.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

We're back this week with three in the studio. Jared is out as he covers the field hockey game, but Paulie, Jeff, and I will discuss all the results from the week. We'll have plenty to talk about to be sure, and we'll do our best to keep it positive as we bring the joy and excitement of Louisville women's athletics. As always, you can check out the live stream of the show by going to the Cardinal Couple YouTube page and clicking on the live video. Jeff usually creates that about an hour before the show, which officially starts at 11 AM Eastern. If the live time doesn't work for you, there are plenty of playback options, so be sure to check out whichever is best for you!

Cardinal Couple YouTube: Link
Anchor (podcast host): Link
Apple Podcasts: Link
Google Podcasts: Link
Overcast (free account required): Link
Pocket Casts (free account and app required): Link
RadioPublic: Link
Spotify: Link

Until next time, Go Cards!


Friday, August 25, 2023

Soccer Scores, Volleyball and Field Hockey Kick it Off

Soccer Scores

We've been saying that the soccer team needs to find some offense, and they did last night.

Ravin Alexander got the scoring underway...for the season... for the Cards with a 59th minute score to the top corner of the goal.  Give Addie Chester and Fiona Gaier the assists.

Unfortunately, the good news ends there.  Ravin's goal was an equalizer after Dayton got on the board early, in the seventh minute with a shot to the top center the goal.  Dayton then got the go-ahead goal in the 87th minute of play with a shot to the bottom right corner, taking the win 2-1.

0-2-1 is definitely not the start anyone was hoping for with this schedule, but the Cards will have a good chance to get in the win column on Sunday with a 7:30pm game against Northern Kentucky

Volleyball and Field Hockey Get Started


Volleyball gets the regular season underway with the Cardinal Classic, which brings in the Trojan from Troy, the Washington State Cougers, and the Wright State Raiders.  First up is Troy, from Troy Alabama.  Last year the Trojans went 18-13 and 11-5 in the Sun Belt conference, they lost in the second round of the Sun Belt tourney to James Madison, and lost in the opening round of the NIVC tournament to Tennessee Martin.  With all respect to the players and coaches of Troy, we're not exactly talking about a national powerhouse team, here.

Consider this a warmup before the Saturday night matchup against 21st ranked Washington State.  WSU, in addition to being famous for always having their flag at ESPN's Football College Gameday, earned a respectable 23-10 record last year, including an impressive 14-6 in the PAC-12.  This is, of course, the PAC-12 pre-plundering, so including UCLA, USC, Washington, Stanford, Utah, Colorado, Oregon, and more, all quite impressive volleyball programs.  UofL fans will certainly remember the quarterfinal matching at the KFC Yum! Center where Oregon had match point in the fourth set.

Tonight's match against Troy will give us the first real idea of what the coaching staff is thinking in some position battles for the Cards, with the middle blocker position being again one of the biggest battles, but maybe a bit of a battle for the setter position as well.  There's an outside chance we might see a 6-2 offense, using two setters and two right side hitters, but I wouldn't be expecting it.

First serve is scheduled at 7pm, but there is a match before hand (between WSU and Wright State) and they will be clearing out the arena between games.  ACC Network Extra will carry the Louisville vs Troy match for those who can't make it in person.  It should be a fun romp, and I think we get Stephanie Cantway for color commentator, who is one of the better analysts we see on ACCNX.

Field Hockey

Field Hockey also gets their regular season underway at 7pm, which is a changed start time, against NorthEastern.  The game was originally slated to start at 5pm, but due to the extreme heat in Louisville over the past few days, it was moved back a couple of hours to get out of the peak heat of the day, and hopefully to get the sun off of the turf field a little bit which should also give a little relief.

Northeastern, much like Troy above in volleyball, is best considered a warm up.  They do sport a new head coach, who was promoted from Associate Head Coach after the previous head coach resigned with a literal "best wishes on her future endeavors" from the athletic director.

While soccer is looking for just about any sort of offense, field hockey is capable of generating offense from the field, but they still seem to be challenged in converting corner penalties.  Otherwise, though, the Cards aren't missing a beat from past years, with the defense and midfield still playing well, and the open field offensive production doing well.

And hey, here's a fun note for field hockey.  You've almost certainly heard about Aimee Plumb from England, who is a senior on the squad this year.  Well, her younger sister joins her this year, and be careful that you word it as "younger" sister, rather than "little sister.  While height isn't a major consideration, generally, in field hockey, the younger Plumb looks down on her older sibling by about four inches.

Field Hockey will also be on ACC Network Extra with the later 7pm start time meaning the Floyd Street is going to be at near peak chaos levels.

-- JMcA

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Cards Visit Dayton -- NIL Store Goes LIVE -- THURSDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Women's Soccer Visits Dayton

Louisville women's soccer looks to earn their first win this season when they travel to Dayton for an 8:00 pm ET kickoff. This one will be streamed on ESPN+. For myself, I utilize ESPN+ for streaming, featured articles, and some fantasy football activities, but I don't blame you if you don't want to dish out the money for it.

The Cards began the season with a 0-0 draw against Indiana State and followed that with a 2-0 loss at Xavier. The offense has had no shortage of shots in the two matches, but few of those were on target, and none of those found their way to the back of the net. Offense was a concern we mentioned prior to the season and so far those offensive woes have grown.

Defensively, Louisville has been above average. They shut out Indiana State and even limited the Sycamores' possession time. One of the two goals by Xavier was a penalty kick so they only allowed one goal during real time.

The Flyers enter the match 2-0 with a pair of 4-1 wins against Loyola Maryland and Cincinnati. Dayton has surrendered the same number of goals as Louisville, but allowing one goal per match isn't bad when you've scored eight goals in two matches.

This is a difficult road trip for a Louisville team still trying to find its feet, but the Cards show hopefully get a little fire lit under them coming off a loss.

NIL Store Goes Live

As the world of NIL continues to grow around the NCAA and college sports, Louisville's NIL store has officially launched. On the website, you can go to your favorite student-athlete's page and view products for sale. Most players currently have a few t-shirt and sweatshirt options. These tend to have their name and jersey number listed but might also carry a Louisville logo.

Not every student-athlete is listed as they have to agree to be a part of the Louisville NIL Store program. With it having just launched, we may see more players pop up in the coming weeks.

You can go to to check out the merchandise if interested.

Happy Thursday and Go Cards!

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Cards FH ranked #9 in first poll -- WEDNESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE



The Penn Monto/NFHCA preseason poll is out and Louisville comes in as the #9 ranked. Yeah, I know...the season has already started, but, who's counting?

The "flock" will face seven team in the top 10 and nine in the top 20 this season. 

UNC has the top spot, even with new head coach Erin Matson, The rest of the Top 5 are below:

#2 Northwestern

#3 Maryland\

#4 Michigan

#5 Penn State

The above look pretty solid with Big 10. We'll see if that lasts. #6-10 are below

#6 Virginia

#7 Iowa

#8 Syracuse


#10 Princeton

And, if you're interested...the #11-20 schools are...St, Joseph, Wake Forest, Harvard, Liberty UConn, Rutgers, Boston College, Old Dominion, Albany and Duke

Rankings this time of year are not season-changing important's after the heat of the battle has been ongoing for a few weeks and we see who's a early contender and who's a pretender. Basically, early rankings are so media types like myself can point out that "so and so college is #17 in the polls this week and should give #4 ranked who's that university a real battle." 

It's like saying a cupcake had icing. We expect that. we're pretty sure that's gonna happen. The only question is, do you eat all the icing first or get some cake in with a bite of icing? I once got dressed down for eating a cupcake "the wrong way". In the viewers eyes... 

I've never heard of a team practicing any harder because of their ranking or any less harder because they're satisfied with where they are ranked and where their next opponent is ranked. The coaches will tell you that they don't like their players reading ranking article or stuff about other opponents, Or, as Jeff Walz is fond of saying..

"We don't care who it is, or where their ranked or how they play. We are going to play Louisville basketball, not their style.."

So, what do we know about this Field Hockey squad so far? They handled Bellarmine pretty easily in preseason with a split line up.  We still haven't heard how they did in their final scrimmage at Ohio U.  They'll meet Northwestern at home Friday.

 Yes, #2 ranked Northwestern. 

That one looks to be quite the early season test for the Cards. Will "the flock" be able to play Louisville style Field Hockey?

The Cards are 8-3 all-time against Northwestern and 4-0 on their home turf at Trager Stadium against those northern Wildcats. I'll say that last one again. The Cards are 4-0 at home versus Northwestern. 

Usually, in a lot of sports, the pre-conference matches are designed to help a program build up a lot of wins before conference play begins. In Louisville Field Hockey's case, they'll play four top 10 schools before they start ACC play...versus #1 UNC Sept 15th. 

In any aspect, it should be a fun season....for quality Field Hockey and hard fought battles. 

The temperature could also be a very big factor .I've heard it'll reach 100 degrees Friday. Add about 20 degrees to that when you are down on the field. You try running for 60 minutes in 120 degree heat. I'll pass, thank you. 

Nevertheless, I think the Cards can pull this one out and win it. That'll mess with the Penn/Monto Rankings. 

I hope to see you out there at Trager Friday. It should be a barn burner.. Literally.


Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Pre-Season Field Hockey Honors -- TUESDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


Julie Kouijzer and Aimee Plumb have been named to the 2023 ACC Preseason teams.

Julie Kouijzer (pronounced COW-WISER)

Julie, a fifth-year senior, logged six goals, mostly from set pieces, and helped the defense produce five shutouts last year.

Plumb enters her true senior year after having been one of the top offensive producers over the last couple seasons. She recorded eight goals and seven assists en route to an NFHCA All-American Second Team appearance last year.

(The elder Plumb on the roster -- Aimee)

Louisville was selected to finish fourth in the ACC this year out of seven teams. North Carolina, even with new head coach Erin Matson,  was once again the favorite with 45 votes, but Virginia was hot on their tails with 42 votes. A 1-6 finish in the conference placed the Cards sixth last season. They won the regular season title the year before with a 6-0 mark in conference play.

Justine Sowry just completed her 12th season as head coach and prepares for her baker's dozen year. She's helped lead Louisville to 165 wins, three conference titles, and eight NCAA Tournament appearances. They've made it to the Big Dance four straight years.

With how Louisville looked in their exhibition against Bellarmine last Friday, the defense is as strong as ever, but they have an added touch of what appears to be a more aggressive offense with more weapons.

The Cards open up the regular season this Friday at 5:00 p.m. against Northeastern. Admission is free at Trager Stadium, but prepare for paid parking across the street. Paulie and I both hope to be there for this one.

Happy Tuesday and Go Cards!