Good evening Card Nation. Coach Jeff Brohm and the 11th-ranked Louisville Cardinals took on the Virginia Cavaliers. The Cards are coming off a dominant 34-3 performance against Virginia Tech just 4 days ago. Louisville was led offensively by tailback Isaac Guerendo with 3 touchdowns and 146 yards on 11 carries. The defense was solid like they have been for most of the year. Even though the Cavaliers are 2-7, they’re 2-2 in their last four games, including a 31-27 victory over UNC and heartbreaking 26-29 OT lose to Miami in Miami Gardens. There is a lot on the line for Louisville in this game, mainly a trip to Charlotte for the ACC championship game.
Virginia won the toss and elected to defer. The Cards received the ball first and went three and out. The Louisville defense was able to force a punt after UVA was able to get 1 first down on the first series. After having great starting position, Louisville was able to capitalize on a 42-yard run by Jawhar Jordan with a 4-yard completion from Plummer to Gatewood for the touchdown. Louisville took a 7-0 lead heading into the 2nd quarter.
The Cards squandered a couple of early possessions in the quarter, mostly due to sloppy play (botched snap on a field goal) and a bunch of penalties. However, the defense continued to do their job and just as UVA was threatening to get some points, Watts forced a fumble on a reverse. The Louisville offense still wasn’t able to find the end zone and was forced to punt. After a punt that landed at the two yard line, the defense forced UVA to punt. That punt was later blocked by D’Angelo Hutchinson and recovered by Jadon Thompson in the end zone. Louisville took a led 14-0 at the half.
Passing Yards: 129
Rushing Yards: 96
UVA came out, moved the ball down the field, and was threatening to cut into the lead before an interception by Devin Neal ended their drive. Again, the offense failed to produce any points, this time with a missed 36-yard field goal. UVA used an 11-play 80-yard drive to cut the Louisville lead in half (7-14). On the ensuing Louisville drive, Plummer threw a pick six that tied the game at 14. Just as the defense thought they had a stop, a UVA fumble was recovered by the Cavaliers and returned 42 yards for a TD to give the Cavaliers a 21-14 lead. The Cards trailed 14-21 heading into the final quarter of regulation.
The Cards started the quarter off with a Travelstead 36-yard field goal to cut the UVA lead to four ( 17-21). UVA, as they had done all half, answered UofL’s field goal with a 38-yard field goal of their own to push the lead back up to 7. For the first time all half, the Louisville offense found the end zone with a 52-yard pass from Plummer to AHB to tie the game at 24 with 6:20 remaining. Defense once again came up big and got a stop to get the ball back to the offense. Isaac Guerendo then made UVA pay with a 73-yard run for a touchdown to give the Cards a 31-24 lead. On UVA’s final possession of the game, the Cards defense came away with a big fourth down stop. Louisville wins 31-24.
Post Game Notes:
Louisville improves to 9-1 on the season and will now turn their attention to the Miami Hurricanes next Saturday in Miami Gardens, FL. The Louisville defense continues to come up huge for the Cards this year. They forced 2 turnovers this game, came away with 4 sacks, and a huge fourth down stop to help seal this win for Louisville. Plummer and the offense, more specifically the passing game, need to continue to improve and capitalize on their openings. This game proved why football is the ultimate team sport. The defense held their own for awhile, special teams contributed a touchdown, and the offense was able to come alive in the fourth quarter as they contributed to the complete team win. Plummer finished with 243 passing yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 really bad pick six. Jawhar Jordan had 95 yards on 17 carries and Isaac Guerendo totaled 94 yards on 6 carries with 1 touchdown.