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Sunday, October 29, 2023

Volleyball Set to Face Miami -- SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

Cards Host Canes at 1PM

With the soccer and field hockey teams wrapping up their regular seasons, Louisville volleyball lays claim to Sundays for a few weeks. This afternoon, Louisville takes on Miami in a match with more at stake than it may seem. Miami haven't been world beaters this season, but a victory over Notre Dame on Friday moved the Canes to 8-3 in conference play. With Louisville at 10-1, a win by Miami would put them just one game back of Louisville, and one game back of the league lead if Pittsburgh were also to fall.

Louisville currently sits atop the league with Pitt (stop me if you've heard that before). Georgia Tech and FSU are tied for third (thanks to Louisville's sweep on Friday) at 9-2. Miami is alone at 8-3, and they'd very much like to not go down into the clutches of teams like Wake (7-4), NC State (6-5), and Duke (6-6). No other team in the league is better than 4-7. 

Miami has been curious this season. One of their conference losses is a five-set match against rival FSU. Their other two, though, came against Wake and Clemson. Similarly, they have a non-conference loss to then-ranked #1 Wisconsin. The Canes were swept in Madison, but they also lost five-set matches to Indiana and South Carolina. The close losses aren't the only thing this Miami team has to hang their hats on this season. While the non-conference slate was relatively unimpressive, Miami does have a win over Georgia Tech in conference play: a sweep on the road.

Despite winning their last two on the road, Miami's road record hasn't been great. The Canes are 3-4 in true road games with the losses to Wake and Clemson coming away from home. Louisville will have the home-court advantage, which is not insignificant in L&N Federal Credit Union Arena. Miami does have quite a bit of height, rostering 14 players 6'-0" or taller. Louisville has just ten such players, but the Cards' shorter players, particularly Charitie Luper, have shown plenty of ability to compensate for standing height with leaping ability. Miami is outblocking their opponents by just 0.05 blocks per set (2.119-2.069) while Louisville is averaging 2.3 blocks per set this season (0.6 better than their opponents). 

Volleyball had a ring ceremony for their runner-up
finish during Homecoming yesterday.
The serving game will be an interesting one to watch. Louisville has struggled at the service line, which is nothing new, but Miami hasn't been stellar either. Louisville averages 1.8 aces per set, which seems pretty good, but they're averaging 2.5 service errors per set. Miami is negative as well, but less so. The Canes hit 1.76 aces per set with just 2.16 errors. Where Louisville may be able to gain an advantage here is in serve receive. The Cards are allowing just 0.8 aces per set from opponents. Miami, on the other hand, gives up 1.39. If the Cards can avoid errors themselves, they should be able to take advantage of the Miami defense to win points while mitigating Miami's ace opportunities.

Critically, the Cards need to avoid overlooking Miami. Louisville gets GT next, which will be a critical matchup on the road. Fortunately, this is a Sunday match with the big match being on Friday. If the two were reversed, I would be more afraid of a "trap game" situation. With plenty of time to review film and prepare for Georgia Tech over the next week, Coach Dani Busboom Kelly should be able to keep the team focused on the task at hand this week. The match gets underway at 1PM on ACC Network Extra.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour Podcast

If you've been looking for the show, fear not; it has been posted. Due to some technical issues, we had a bit of a delay with the podcast. The episode was available via YouTube, but you can now find it anywhere you might wish to listen. There was plenty to discuss yesterday, so be sure to check it out. 

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!



  1. One of the volleyballopponents ( Carolina maybe) had a special slot mo camera which allowed those at the net tips to be seen clearly. Any chance Lou will get one or that the NCAA will soon mandate them?

  2. My typing... slo motion camera


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