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Cards gut one out on the road

This picture is killing me.

Win a close game? Check.

Louisville didn't do everything right down the stretch, but they did enough to turn a three-point deficit into an eight-point Big East road win, and that's enough to make me happy for the rest of the day.

Earl Clark was enormous on both ends of the floor down the stretch, and hit a mammoth three-pointer in the last three minutes for the second time in three games. Jerry Smith and David Padgett also made big plays at critical moments in the last ten minutes.

With road tests left at Georgetown and Pitt, as well as home games against Syracuse, Notre Dame and Villanova, this was one the Cards couldn't afford to drop. This team is going to be tested every night from here on out, so being forced to earn one in the last three minutes can't do anything but help.

Now it's another quick turnaround as a suddenly confident Syracuse team rolls into the Hall for Big Monday. Here's hoping for another electric atmosphere.

Eight-week Big East champions baby.