UofL Women’s Basketball’s NCAA Tournament run starts today. The game tips off at 8pm on ESPN. You can listen to the game locally on 790-AM WKRD.
The #2 seed Cardinals take on #15 Marist Red Foxes. The Red Foxes enter the tournament at 18-3 and winners of the MAAC championship.
The all-time series is tied 1-1, with both games being played on a neutral court. Louisville won the last meeting between the two teams 65-53, November 27th 2015.
Tale Of The Tape
Scoring: 78.7 ppg 63.6 ppg
Shooting%: 41.6% 46.9%
Free Throw%: 68.4% 79%
3-point %: 33.4% 35.1%
Rebounds: 38.2 39.4
Assists: 16.2 15.2
Steals: 8.2 7.6
Blocks: 3.2 4.8
Turnovers: 13.7 12.0
The Red Foxes hold opponents to only 50 ppg, with opponents shooting a rough 34%. Marist always outrebounded their opposition by an average of 4.3rpg.
The Red Foxes have 2 players that average double figure scoring and a third player very very close (9.9ppg).
Jr guard Sarah Barcello is the team’s leading scorer with 12.9 ppg. Senior forward Willow Duffell is right behind her with 12.5 ppg, but Duffell leads the team in rebounding with 9.2 rpg.
Ali Best is the team’s 5th leading scorer (7.6ppg), but she leads the team with 110 assists. The 5’8 senior guard is the head of the Red Foxes attack. Besides decision making, one of her best strengths is her ability to take care of the basketball. Best only has 23 total turnovers in over 700 minutes of playing time.
The Cards need to be locked into the scouting report defensively more than they have ever been before, starting with Marist. The Cards have not only Final Four aspirations, but National Championship hopes as well. They must get past the first two or three rounds and use them to get better for the better opponents. Louisville will obviously have a huge advantage talent wise, so sharpening their defensive intensity in these early rounds will go a long way.
If the Cards can use their speed and athleticism to speed up Best and the Red Foxes, the Cards will be able to force some turnovers and make this game a track meet.