UofL WBB Semifinals Recap vs Syracuse

Pregame Notes:

Good afternoon Card Nation. Coach Walz and the Louisville Cardinals look to advance to play on championship Sunday. The Cards were able to finally put away a pesky Wake Forest team yesterday, despite having a low scoring outing from Dana Evans. The Cards won their only game vs Syracuse this season 67-54. Syracuse beat FSU (68-67) yesterday, in what was an incredible matchup.

Starting Lineup:

Dana Evans (8ppg, 7apg)
Hailey Van Lith (24ppg, 5rpg)
Mykasa Robinson (8rpg, 4apg )
Kianna Smith (6ppg, 2apg)
Olivia Cochran (6ppg, 1rpg)

1st Quarter:

A Kianna Smith 3 on a Dana Smith assist gave the Cards a brief 3-2 lead. With 6 minutes remaining in the quarter, Louisville already shot more free throws than they did all game yesterday. A Hailey Van Lith 3 gave Louisville a brief 19-10 lead. Despite struggling offensively again, the Cards took a 19-13 lead into the second quarter.

2nd Quarter:

Louisville continued to extend their defensive pressure as they pushed the lead to 11 (28-17) early in the quarter. Syracuse began to use their length to punish the Cards on the glass and cut the Louisville lead to 5. Dana Evans’ first basket pushed the Cards lead back to 7 (30-23). Konno’s 5 quick points and a couple free throws from Dana Evans gave Louisville a 7-point lead (37-30) heading into intermission.

Halftime Stats At A Glance:

FG%: 13-31 (41.9%)
3PT%: 5-10 (50.0%)
FT%: 6-6 (100.0%)
Assists: 7
Turnovers: 6
Total Rebounds: 15-19
Leading Scorer: Kianna Smith(9)

3rd Quarter:

Dana got the first bucket for the Cards, as Louisville started the quarter shooting 3/4. Both teams showed glimpses of offensive efficiency in the quarter. Louisville again got great minutes from their bench players. Two Dana Evans free throws gave Louisville their biggest lead (59-47) heading into the final quarter of regulation.

4th Quarter:

Syracuse broke out their halfcourt 1-3-1 defense and Louisville really struggled to score against it. There were a few defensive stops by Syracuse, but they couldn’t capitalize on the offensive end. Syracuse refused to go away, but Louisville continued to make timely plays. Dana Evans hit a free throw and hit a reverse layup that put the game out of reach. Louisville beat Syracuse 72-59.

Final Stats:

FG% 25-63 (39.7%)
3PT% 6-20 (30.0%)
FT% 16-17 (94.1%)
Assists: 10
Blocks: 0
Steals: 6
Turnovers: 9
Total Rebounds: 39-37
Offensive Rebounds: 14-12
Bench Points: 23

Post Game Notes and Leaders:

Louisville survives and advances to the finals tomorrow. The Cards got to the free throw line more this game than they did yesterday (16-17). Today’s game was a much more balanced attack from the Cards. Dana Evans had 13 points and 3 assists. Olivia Cochran added 10 points and 10 rebounds. Norika Konno came in and had 10 points and 1 rebound off the bench.

Next Opponent:

The Cards play tomorrow at noon for the ACC  Tournament championship. They will face the winner of NC State and Georgia Tech.

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