Good afternoon Card Nation, Louisville is coming off a 79-49 thrashing of Boston College for their first ACC win of the year. Our 3rd-ranked Louisville Cardinals took the road to Atlanta to have a top 20 faceoff vs Georgia Tech. Georgia Tech is currently 10-2 and ranked 16th in the Country. Both teams are currently 1-0 in the ACC. This game is also a matchup of two of the nation’s best defenses. Georgia Tech allows 45.3 ppg (1st in the country), while Louisville allows 48.3 ppg (4th in the country). Louisville leads the all-time series against the Yellow Jackets 8-0, including 3-0 in McCamish Pavilion.
Chelsie Hall (6.2ppg, 2.1apg, 3.4rpg)
Hailey Van Lith (11.3ppg, 3.5rpg)
Emily Engstler (10.3rpg, 8.7ppg )
Kianna Smith (12ppg, 3.4rpg)
Olivia Cochran (6.8ppg, 4.8rpg)
Georgia Tech showed early why they have the #1 opponent’s ppg in the country. At the first media timeout, Louisville had 0 points and 5 turnovers. Chelsie Hall finally breaks the scoring seal with a transition layup. All of Georgia Tech’s points came from beyond the arc or from the free throw line. Louisville shot 1/4 from the free throw line and trailed 11-3 after the first quarter.
The Cards continued to struggle at the free throw line early in the half (1-8), but the defense allowed them to keep the game close. Freshman guard Payton Verhulst hit a beautiful reverse layup for the Cards first field goal of the quarter. Ahlana Smith hit a corner 3 to tie the game at 20 heading into intermission.
Halftime Stats At A Glance:
FG%: 8-28 (28.6%)
3PT%: 2-9 (22.2%)
FT%: 2-10 (20.0%)
Total Rebounds: 23-21
Leading Scorer: Chelsie Hall(5)
The Cards started the quarter with a 3-ball that gave them their first lead of the game (23-20). UofL was called for a ton of fouls early in the quarter as Kianna Smith and Engstler both picked up their 3rd fouls. Georgia Tech went on a 7-0 run (23-27). Coach Walz then received a technical foul. Georgia Tech ended the quarter on a 12-4 run and took a five point lead (27-32) heading into the final quarter.
Louisville started the quarter with a top-of-the-key 3-ball by Kianna Smith. Louisville kept it close every chance they got, but every time they made a push Georgia Tech (Cubaj in particular) made key baskets time after time. A Hailey Van Lith mid-range jumper tied the game at 48 with 35.6 seconds left. Engstler, who had been quiet all game, ended up hitting the game-winning layup. The Cards win 50-48.
FG% 19-52 (36.5%)
3PT% 5-16 (31.3%)
FT% 7-16 (43.8%)
Total Rebounds: 40-41
Offensive Rebounds: 16-15
Bench Points: 9
Post Game Notes and Leaders:
Louisville improved to 2-0 in the ACC and gave Georgia Tech their first conference loss. Louisvile struggled in every facet of this game. I’ll give a little credit to Georgia Tech, but the referees kept Louisville out of rhythm all game with their horrid officiating. Louisville didn’t help themselves either with their turnovers and horrific free throw performance this game. However, in the fourth quarter Louisville found their rhythm and was able to come away with a ranked road victory. Louisville was led in scoring by Emily Engstler with 14 points. Hailey Van Lith, Hall, and Kianna Smith all added 7 points. Cochran led the team with 13 big rebounds and 3 blocks.
Louisville takes on the Pittsburgh Panthers Thursday, January 6th at 7 pm in the KFC YUM! Center.