Maybe we're getting somewhat spoiled by the degree to which Louisville has put the foot to the throat of this string of lesser opponents leading up to Kentucky and then conference play. That would probably explain why it seemed to be somewhat sluggish, somewhat disorganized in an easy win over UMKC and former Louisville assistant Kareem Richardson in the first of two games in the Billy Minardi Classic.With the 75-47 win, Louisville improved to 10-1 with another game tomorrow night against Utah Valley.
In the first game without Mangok Mathiang in the lineup, there was certainly less energy on the defensive end. His absence and the return of Deng Adel also gave us a slew of new lineup combinations. Adel checked into the game midway through the first half (and threw a gorgeous lob to Chinanu Onuaku in transition late in the second half). Matz Stockman, who has played sparingly thus far, came off the bench early as Anas Mahmoud continues to nurse a high ankle sprain.
As has been the case most of the season, Louisville's scoring was provided first and foremost by Damion Lee and Trey Lewis. Lee finished the game with 14 points and 3 rebounds while Lewis had one of his best offensive halves in the second half and finished with 17 points, 3 rebounds, and an assist. Louisville also added double-digit point production from Jaylen Johnson, Donovan Mitchell, and Chinanu Onuaku (many of which came underhanded at the free throw line!).