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Sunday, April 26, 2015

Becca and Hannah embody what commitment is about -- Sunday Cardinal Couple



SENIORS HELPED FIELD HOCKEY WIN CARDINAL CUP AND SHAPE PROGRAM


Becca Maddock and Hannah Boyle aren't household names when it comes to UofL women's sports. They spent their four years at the University of Louisville helping Justine Sowry build a strong Field Hockey program and excelling at academic and community involvement. It is time their story be told.

Becca...who will be long remembered by field hockey fans for the go-ahead goal against #1 UNC this fall. That 3-2 win qualified as the Upset of the Year at the recent Louie Awards Monday evening at the Palace Theatre.


Hannah...part of the back line defenders that were a steel curtain against opponent's attempts to score. A young women who wanted to be a jockey when she was little. She's in the horse racing industry now as a supervisor of one of Churchill Downs' premier rooms. Still providing assistance and help.

Becca Maddock was the individual CardsCARE Award winner and the Field Hockey squad took the team award. Both are awarded annually for exemplifying a commitment to community service. The squad also won the Cardinal Cup. It signifies the winner of the annual competition among the UofL sports squads that encourages involvement in the Cards CARE program on many levels including life skills, community service, academics, career development and athletic achievement.


Coach Justine Sowry prepares her young stick swingers for life after graduation. Like so many of the UofL coaches, Sowry well knows that the building blocks and fundamentals of life her student-athletes pick up on the Belknap Campus will be the foundation for their life journey and careers. 

An Assumption girl who won a state title and a Rhode Island resident who actually has a dual citizenship in Ireland and the United States. Two girls who overcame sports injuries to be a major part of arguably the best Field Hockey team in the history of the sport at Louisville

Hannah and Becca.

To see them at Churchill Downs on opening night was a extreme treat. Becca remembered when I interviewed her after the UNC win. I remember her euphoric...almost giddy account of the win. I recalled the charging off the bench and the on-field celebration when Louisville Field Hockey defeated Duke and UNC. I told these two young women how exciting that was to see and how proud I was of them on those two days.  Their smiles were wider and brighter than the massive scoreboard out in the Churchill Downs infield.


Hannah and Becca.

Two members of an elite group that won four awards Monday night at the Louies. Part of a team that captured the hearts and admiration of a fan base that will forever be grateful. Two young ladies who have flown out of the Justine Sowry nest and will make an impact on and better all who happen to chance upon them. 

Cardinals.  

paulie

Saturday, April 25, 2015

SOFTBALL DEFEATS BOSTON COLLEGE 3-1...DERBY WEEK IS UPON US...RADIO TODAY -- SATURDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


( Our Saturday CARDINAL COUPLE report will look at the UofL Softball win over Boston College. Our radio show is today at 11 a.m. and we'll preview that. Also, it is Derby Week in Louisville, KY. It's the most wonderful time of the year! Bats, microphones and horses...have I been to this party?) 

BECKER, SOLES LEAD CARDS PAST B.C.



Maryssa Becker delivered a three hit, one run allowed performance from the circle while striking out six and Kayla Soles two-RBI single in the second inning gave Louisville the momentum to down ACC Conference opponent Boston College 3-1 at Ulmer Stadium Friday night.

Louisville (26-16, 13-5 ACC) got a leadoff walk out of Brittany Duncan (no chance to deliver "the boom") and another Brittany (Sims) doubled to left to advance Duncan to third. (Insert your version of "WHOOOO!" here) 


That set the stage for the pride of New Egypt, NJ (Exit 5 on the Jersey Turnpike) ...Kayla Soles...to smack a drive right up the middle that scored the runners. In fact, it seemed like they both got to home plate at the same time. Duncan had scored and was turning around to give Sims the "slide" single...but Sims was standing there waiting to give her a high five. 

The Eagles retaliated with two outs in the top of the third with a run but Becker shut the door after those two hits and allowed just one more in the final four innings. 



UofL added an additional run in the fifth when Kelsi Jones doubled to left and scored on a Whitney Arion bunt and throwing error. The Cards got another strong effort out of Becker (12-5) and made some very spectacular fielding plays to back her up...especially Hailey Smith and Arion in the infield.

These two will get back together Sunday for a double-header that starts around noon. 

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HAPPY START OF DERBY WEEK!


It is the start of Derby Week in Louisville, KY. A great place to be for the many festivities an events. Today is the running of the Derby City mini and regular marathon, the Balloon race and Churchill Downs opens their spring racing card with night racing that begins at 6 p.m.



It all culminates with the running of the Kentucky Derby next Saturday. In the interim, all kinds of events are scheduled in-between. The Pegasus Parade, The Great Steamboat Race, the Run for the Rose' and the Chow Wagon festivities...just to mention a few. 

As "locals"...sometimes we can be a bit jaded about the cornucopia of activities and events. All it takes, though, is one first-time visitors wide-eyed wonderment over the mega-festival atmosphere that goes on for eight days here to remind us that Louisville, KY has the eyes of the world on it for those eight magical, non-stop and fun-filled days.

Happy Derby Week to you! 

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MAMA...THOSE MEN ARE TALKING AGAIN!

We'll be doing our regularly scheduled radio show today on WCHQ 100.9 FM and on the Internet at:

www.crescenthillradio.com


It starts at 11 a.m. and we'll cover news and items about Louisville softball, hoops, lacrosse and more! We have an exclusive interview with Jude Schimmel at her Sunday book-signing and a WorldWide Quiz you can take. Don Paulie might be popping in to deliver one of his rambling, disconcerted oratories and free pizza for the first 100 in the studio viewing area! 

(OK...we're not giving away free pizza...but you could order a pizza and eat it while you listen at home. Don't eat the pizza while driving, please...)

Radio, radio...we're on a Crescent Hill Radio. See ya there!

paulie
xxxxx 




Friday, April 24, 2015

Duke knocks Louisville LAX out of ACC Tournament....Changes for Softball this weekend -- Friday Cardinal Couple



(We'll take a look at the 14-7 loss #3 Duke put on the Louisville LAXers yesterday in the ACC Quarterfinals and preview the weekend changes for Louisville Softball against Boston College at Ulmer Stadium. A typical weekend for softball...dealing with rain threats. Maybe the next promo for Louisville Softball should be pocket umbrellas...FRIDAY CARDINAL COUPLE is coming at ya...in rain gear and rubber boots!) 


TYPICAL PATTERN EMERGES AGAIN IN CARDS LOSS TO DUKE. 


We've reviewed the basic anatomy of a typical Louisville Lacrosse game in the ACC here several times before. Students, refer to your previous notes and follow along. 

- The Cards stay close early in the contest, even lead. This held true again yesterday against the Blue Devils. Louisville lead 3-1 with about 11 minutes to go in first half action.

- Here Comes the Boom. Duke went on a 5-0 run to take a three goal lead. 

- Cards fight back but fall short. Louisville made a run to get back in the contest twice. The Cards cut it to 6-5 with goals from Kelli Gerding and Hannah Koloski. Duke responded with Here Comes the Boom: The Sequel...four straight Blue Devils scores put them up 10-5. The Cards did cut it to three on Cortnee Daley and Carlissa Corbett scores but a few defensive lapses and thefts allowed the Durham school to post the final four net-finders...including a "really...you needed that?" score with one tick left on the clock from one of the Duke subs.


Seven different Cards had a goal each in the loss. Anna Kopecka, Heidi Smith, Kaylin Morissette, Gerding, Koloski, Daley and Corbett all beat the goalie once. 

Louisville has a 10-7 record and now waits to see if they'll get an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. 

In typical, "why do anything normal?" NCAA Lacrosse fashion, 26 teams will vie for the 2015 NCAA title. 13 conference qualifiers and 13 at-large teams. These will be announced Derby weekend. 

May 8th. features 10 first round games at higher seed sites. The May 10th. second round matchups will be contested at eight different sites. So...six teams get first round byes. 



Here's a stellar FINAL FOUR...Sonja, Tillie, MArkie and Poobah  
May 16th and 17th will be the quarter-finals where four games will determine who the FINAL FOUR are and they'll meet in Philly at PPL Park on May 22-23 to determine a national champ. 

Couldn't the NCAA just added six teams and have sixteen first round sites were everybody plays...like the basketball and soccer tournaments do?  Or even eight first and second pods where you send four teams?  You need seven hands (or four people) to count to 32. I guess they were a selection committee planner short...Moe, Larry and Curly couldn't find a "fourth".



"WE got 'next'"
Are the Cards a bubble team? My opinion is "No". i think they are in the NCAA Tournament comfortably. They'll probably drop a spot or two in the national rankings...but should easily be selected for an at-large. I see seven of the eight ACC schools that play Lacrosse getting in and Louisville just might get to host a first round game if things go their way. We draw well, in terms of a fan-base, for Lacrosse. Whether they would stick a admission fee on this because it is NCAA Championships related and they are money-hungry fools remains to be seen.

The month of May is one that Kellie Young and her girls hope keeps them busy to nearly Memorial Day weekend. 

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WEATHER NECESSITATES SOFTBALL CHANGES



This was one of the designs we considered for the site
until it was pointed out that we don't have a
women's football team at UofL. Yet. 
Our meteorological prognosticators are calling for rainy weather Saturday. So, the scheduled ACC Softball series against Boston College this weekend has been altered. There was a Saturday doubleheader scheduled against the Eagles and a single game Sunday. This has been re-arranged to a Friday 7 p.m. single game tonight and a doubleheader for Sunday that will start at noon.

BC comes in with a 20-19 record and is 3-13 in the ACC. This places the Eagles tenth in the eleven team conference standings. Louisville (25-14) is fourth.


This will be the first ever meeting between the two schools. BC is on a roll...having won their last four games and most recently shut out Connecticut 5-0 earlier this week. I guess "Stewie", "The Mosquito" and "Moriah" don't play hit and pitch in Storrs. The Cards are fresh off a 8-0 trouncing of the Kittie Kats in Lessington.

With the day off...Louisville should be able to use staff pitching ace Maryssa Becker twice. If Madi Norman and Shelby McCombs can step up and deliver a strong third game...Louisville could sweep the series. A sweep could allow the Cards to move up in the ACC standings...Notre Dame and UNC face each other for three games this weekend also. Here's the top four in the conference:

Florida State     17-3
UNC                  15-4
Notre Dame       16-5
Louisville           12-5

The best case scenario would be if Notre Dame beat UNC twice. It would give both schools six losses. If the Cards sweep, they would still have only five conference defeats and bounce ahead of both schools in the loss column. A #2 seed in the ACC Tournament would be great and keep the Cards out of Florida State's path until the finals. 

Let's just hope the weather guys and girls haven't misread the future...

pauiie
xxxxx





Thursday, April 23, 2015

Lacrosse starts ACC Tournament play today...Walz to coach on U19 team -- Thursday Cardinal Couple



( In the Thursday edition of CARDINAL COUPLE, we look at Lacrosse heading to the ACC Tournament and Walz headed to Russia. An international flair mixed with free position shots for you as we move toward the weekend!) 


LAX FACES DUKE IN ACC TOURNAMENT


No one said the first year in the ACC for Louisville Lacrosse would be an easy affair...and the Cards ended up right where the preseason prognostications put them, in seventh place...as they move from conference schedule to conference tournament today.

Charlottesville, VA is the home of the University of Virginia and it is where Louisville will look to survive and advance in the ACC Tournament against #2 seed Duke today at 4 p.m.

The two did hook up in conference play at the Louisville Lacrosse Stadium on March 14th. The Cards led early in this one and took it to the wire before falling to the Blue Devils 10-8.

Faye Brust, Kaylin Morissettte, Hannah Koloski and Cortnee Daley had two goals each in the loss. Two Duke goals in the final 1:20...including one with a second left...were the difference. We also had a great post-game interview with the Duke head coach Kerstin Kimel, who started the program in 1996, after the game. The recap with Coach Young was...well...a bit subdued and very short. 


The Cards finished regular season play 10-6 and are currently ranked 11th in the nation. Without Faye Brust (knee injury) the attack has suffered but Louisville did knock off #10 Notre Dame to end the season. The Blue Devils ended the regular season with a loss to top-ranked North Carolina in Durham, NC. Louisville could use a win here, or at least a very close game to bolster their hopes to play in the NCAA Tournament this year.

Kaylin Morissette was the sole Card to be selected to the All-ACC Lacrosse team and was a first team selection. 

It'll be on ESPN 3 if you want to play along at home...

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WALZ RETURN AS USA BASKETBALL COACH

The headline may be a bit misleading...Jeff Walz never left the USA to coach anywhere else.

 (imagine Walz coaching the Chinese National team)


What we're trying to say is that the mad scientist will hook up again this summer with Dawn Staley head coaching and Kim Barnes Arico keeping those two in check as they select and take a team to Chekhov, Russia for the USA U-19 World Championships.

The trio won the FIBA Americas U18 title in Colorado Springs last summer. One would surmise that those girls (including Louisville's Mariya Moore) might have the inside track to make the U19 squad...but approximately 30 girls will be involved in the tryouts. You have to be born on or after Jan. 1, 1996 to be considered...CARDINAL COUPLE'S Sonja just missing the cutoff date...

Tryouts are May 14-17, in Colorado Springs at the US Olympic Training Facility and action begins on July 18th against Spain. 

16 nations will quest for the title...a title won by the USA the last five consecutive times. 

Oo-da-chee! (Which is 'good luck' in Russian)

paulie  

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Softball Cards run-rule Cats 8-0 behind Becker's one-hitter -- Wednesday Cardinal Couple


( In today's Cardinal Couple...we look at Softball's huge win over the Cats and WBB is headed south for Thanksgiving!) 

CARDS SHUT OUT UK IN LEXINGTON

Louisville banged out ten hits against three different UK pitchers and Maryssa Becker allowed just one hit in a six-inning, 8-0 run-rule win over UK Tuesday night in Lexington.

Becker gave up a 1st inning single to UK leadoff batter Nikki Sagermann and that proved to be the only hit UK would muster against the Oregon sophomore.

The Cards, meanwhile, were having a hitting spree against UK.

Louisville took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second when Becker helped her own cause with a two-run homer to left on a 1-0 pitch with two outs...scoring Hailey Smith.

She pitched her way out of the only serious threat by UK in the third inning...the Cats had runners on second and third from a walk and throwing error with two outs...but Becker fanned UK's Christian Stokes to get out of the inning.

The Cards would add two more in the fourth when Whitney Arion singled and came home on a Becker single...her third RBI of the game. After Kelsi Jones reached on a fielder's choice Tiarra Sanabria delivered a two-out double down the right field line to score Jones.

Louisville almost reached a run-rule scenario in the fifth...scoring three runs. A single by Jordan McNary and walks to Brittany Duncan and Whitney Arion set the stage for Kelsi Jones' 3 RBI double to deep center. Jones was left stranded on third...but the score was 7-0 UofL.

The Cards tacked on a run in the sixth...Brittany Sims singling to start the inning and scoring on a Duncan single.

Becker retired the Cats in order in the bottom of the sixth to end the contest.



Louisville (25-14) returns to action Saturday at noon. ACC Conference foe Boston College comes to town for a doubleheader and then a single game on Sunday.

The Louisville win breaks a four game losing streak to UK.

Becker was magnificent in the circle for the win for the Cards and it was good to see Louisville get out the bats for this one. Maybe a bit strange that the Cats didn't use Kelsey Nunley...who has had Louisville's number as of late...but it's still a nice win for the Cards and is the first UofL women's sports win over UK in the 2014-15 season since golf took down the Cats in the Battle of the Bluegrass challenge back in late February.

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WBB SLATED FOR GULF COAST SHOWCASE


The Louisville WBB squad will be playing in the 2015 Gulf Coast Showcase early on in the 2015-16 schedule. 

The three day event takes place in Estero, FL and will be held Nov 27-29 in Germain Arena. Estero is on the gulf coast side of Florida...north of Naples and south of Ft. Myers. 

Eight contestants will vye for the title that UConn won in 2014...Louisville, Dayton, LSU, Stanford, Maine, Marist, Missouri and Purdue. 

A good early test for a young Cardinal squad to play three games in three days. Nine of the players on Jeff Walz's squad are freshmen or sophomore. 

Out of the eight teams...four played in the 2014 NCAA Tournament (UofL, Dayton, Stanford and LSU) and three participated in the WNIT. 

paulie
xxxxx

Cards v Cats Softball -- Round II...Tuesday Cardinal Couple



CARDS LOOK TO BREAK FOUR GAME LOSING STREAK AGAINST UK TONIGHT

If the University of Louisville Softball team shows up at John Cropp Stadium in galoshes, rain slickers and carrying umbrellas...you really can't blame them. Three out of the last four scheduled games for the Hit and Pitch Cards have been cancelled due to rain. 

Fortunately, the weather forecast for Lexington tonight is rain-free with highs in the mid 60's. Should be a beautiful night for softball against #14 UK and the Cards should be well rested.



They'll need every advantage they can muster...the Wildcats have won the last four outings against UofL. Last time out, the Cards were shut out in Ulmer Stadium on April Fools Day 4-0. A game that was scoreless through four innings in a pitchers' duel between Maryssa Becker and UK's Kelsey Nunley. A three-run homer was the blast that sent Louisville to defeat. Louisville left seven runners on the bags in the contest while suffering only their third shutout of the season.

Louisville got in one game of a planned three against Ole Miss earlier this week in Oxford, MS. They fell to the Rebs 5-2...Kayla Soles' two-run blast the offense for UofL (24-14).

Leading the way at the plate for Sandy Pearsall's club this year is Kelsi Jones with a .386 batting average and Jordan McNary follows with a .378 success rate. Maryssa Becker has a 10-5 record from the circle and freshman Shelby McCombs has eight wins in twelve decisions. 

We hope to get another matchup in the circle between Becker and Nunley...but the Cards will need to find a way to get some runs across the plate against the 11-11 hurler who has fanned 126 batters. The Cats are 28-16 on the season and dropped two out of three last time out against South Carolina. 

This one will be shown on the SEC Network+ (which we understand is available on digital TV). Game time is 6 p.m. and will also be detailed on UKAthletics.com gametracker.
Both schools will keep you in the know on Twitter as well.

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ROBERSON VISITS CARDS


While Jude Schimmel was autographing books Sunday, Jeff Walz was busy seeking an autograph of his own...hoping that Colorado transfer Arielle Roberson would find the UofL campus to her liking during a visit...she's also touring Purdue and West Virginia. 

A two-time All Big 12 honorable mention...Roberson will technically be a fifth-year senior but might possibly have two years of eligibility left due to missing time with an ACL injury. Others say just one year...we say let's get her here first and then work on the time-frame. 



The 6'1" forward could add some depth to the projected Cards front line in 2015-16. With Cortnee Walton, Emmonnie Henderson, Myisha Hines-Allen, and Syd Brackemyer returning (two out of the four sat out 2014-15 with injuries) and Erin DeGrate and Sam Fuehring hitting campus...there are a few questions about how effective this group might be. A seasoned, veteran paint-dweller could be a welcome addition to a team that does appear to have plenty of fire power at guard and the wing spots. 

Word also gets to us that Christian Academy's China Dow is leaving MTSU and former Jeff Walz camper Haley Bodnar has departed from Purdue. Tis the season for changing address...



paulie
xxxxx

Monday, April 20, 2015

Jude Book Signing Sunday night a huge hit...Lacrosse beats Notre Dame -- Monday Cardinal Couple


LONG LINES, PLENTY OF SMILES FOR JUDE SIGNING


Jude Schimmel signed her book Dreamcatcher Sunday night at the Cardinal hall of Fame Cafe and the fans came out in droves for the chance to buy a copy, have her sign it and pose for pictures. 

Crowds were already starting to form when Sonja and I arrived at the restaurant around 5:45 p.m. for media interviews...before the signings started. 

When the autographs began shortly before 6:30 p.m., the line stretched from down the hallway leading to the Coach's Room to the entrance of the restaurant. When we left after the interview and a bite to eat (around 7:45 p.m.) the line was still stretched back to the door. 

We got to talk to the author for a few minutes before the signing began. We'll play the full interview on our weekly CARDINAL COUPLE RADIO SHOW on Saturday...but here are some of the highlights:

-- On the crowd response:  "I'm really excited to see the people waiting for see me so I can discuss things and the book with them. One thing I have learned in four years here is that the people of Louisville are passionate about their sports, especially women's basketball. I'm grateful for having been a part of it"

-- When the idea first struck her to write a book:  "In the seventh grade is when I think it first occurred to me about writing a book but I never thought it would become a reality. Last fall, though, I started it and it started becoming a reality." 

-- The motivation behind the book: "I wanted people to learn...through what I've been through in my life and hopefully go out there and be successful in their lives."

Jude's book is available at her website:

www.judeschimmel.com


There is also a link to the site on the Right Side of THE Site here at Cardinal Couple.

We heard that Jeff Walz was scheduled to appear with Jude also...but was with a basketball recruit. He hadn't arrived by the time we left but we did see Myisha Hines-Allen headed to the signing room. 

(A special thanks to Charlie Springer -- UofL Card Game -- for his photos!!) 

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RAINS WASH OUT SOFTBALL


Softball cancelled on Sunday for Pearsall's Pulveriers. The rains came again to Oxford, MS and the Ole Miss softball diamond.  They head to Lexington Tuesday to battle the Cats...

Louisville got in just one game of the scheduled three...it's going to throw a wrench into the April Contest here at Cardinal Couple...what was 11 games now looks like eight...barring any other weather cancellations. 


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LAX KNOCKS OFF IRISH 10-8

Louisville Lacrosse traveled to South Bend for the final regular season game of the season and pulled off a 10-8 win over the ACC opponent Sunday afternoon. 

This one went back and forth in the first half...the Cards tied it at 3-3 when Kaylin Morissette scored on a free position goal. ND ran off two straight but Louisville responded with three straight scores, two from Hannah Koloski, and Cortnee Daley gave the Cards a 6-5 lead..which looked like it might be the half-time margin. The Irish capitalized with 16 seconds left in the period to tie it. 

The second half belonged to Louisville. 



Daley scored 105 seconds into action. Koloski picked up her third goal three minutes later. A defensive battle ensued until Morissette picked up her second goal with 11:31 remaining. It was 9-6 Cards, and the Irish had been held scoreless.

ND did cut the into the lead with ten minutes remaining but Daley picked up her fourth goal to make it 10-7 a minute later. Notre Dame managed to cut it to two with 8:43 left...but that concluded the scoring and Louisville picked up their 10th. win of the season with ball control and defense the rest of the way.

The Cards are the #7 seed in the ACC Tournament and will face #2 seed Duke Thursday at 4:00 p.m.

paulie
xxxxx