Battle Of The Bluegrass Preview: Cards vs cats

Our Louisville women’s basketball team takes on their rival in Louisville at 1 pm Sunday. If you haven’t got your ticket or tickets yet, please support our student-athletes.

Coach Walz is 7-6 at UofL vs uk, winning the last 4 games. With a win on Sunday, Coach Walz will tie Louisville’s longest winning streak in the series at 5.

Louisville has 3 players that average more than 10 ppg, led by Kianna Smith with 11.5 ppg. Louisville has multiple players that can go for 20 points in any given game.

Before the Belmont game, Louisville’s defense had held their opponents to single digits scoring in 14 out of 28 quarters. Louisville is ranked 4th in the country in scoring defense, only allowing 46.4 points per game. In contrast, the school to the east is ranked 8th in the country in scoring averages with 83.8 per game.

Player Spotlight:
Emily Engstler
10.6 ppg
8.6 rpg
2 bpg

Engstler might get the first crack at slowing down Howard for uk. Engstler has the size, strength, athleticism, and length to make life difficult for Howard. I would imagine Mykasa Robinson coming off the bench would get the second shot at Howard.

The cats have 4 players averaging double digit scoring, led by All-American Rhyne Howard. Howard shoots over 50% from the field and 40% beyond the arc.

   UofL                                             cats          

 69.6            Total PPG:               83.4
46.4.         Opp Total PPG:        63.3

46%               FG%:                    48.7%
34.7%            3PT%:                  35.2%
72%                FT%:                    62.3%
41.5                 RPG:                    37.5
14.9                 APG:                    19.6
15.9                 TO/G:                   12.8

Projected Starting Lineup:
Rhyne Howard
Dre’una Edwards
Robyn Benton
Treasure Hunt
Jazmine Massengill

Keys To Victory:

Take Care Of The Ball: The other team forces almost 20 turnovers a game, Louisville needs to stay in the 11-15 range or this could get ugly. Louisville needs to handle the uk press. Their press will provide UofL with multiple opportunities to score in transition, Louisville just can’t turn the ball over.

Offensive Execution: The team from Lexington plays an aggressive style of defense, UofL needs to utilize the ball fakes and backdoor cuts to take advantage of uk’s over-aggressiveness. When uk goes to their zone, UofL needs to be patient and find the open spots in the zone.

Control The Backboard: This uk team tends to give up their share of offensive boards, so players like Engstler, Robinson, Hailey, Cochran, and Dixon should take advantage on the backboard.

Rhyne Howard: Don’t allow Rhyne Howard to beat you. Howard is 0-2 in her career against Louisville. uk is a good team, but not good enough to beat Louisville without a strong showing from Howard.

Be the better team in transition: uk will run on every opportunity, make or miss. The blue team has the tendency to give up easy buckets in transition, if Louisville can capitalize on a few opportunities and limit the blue folks opportunities all should be well for the Cards.

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