I am not an expert on women's hoops.
Which doesn't mean I'm shy about weighing in on Louisville's dominating takedown of Michigan in the WNIT semi-finals.
74-49 was the final.
It wasn't that close.
Even though the Cards were down 32-37 at halftime.
Then the Cards went all Charles Dickens on their prey. You know, a tale of two halves, the worst of times, the best of times, etc, etc.
The Wolverines were able to muster but 4 points in the 3d. The Cards tallied 19. The visitors from Ann Arbor were able to double their scoring in the 4th with 8. The Cards netted 23.
No need to pull out your abacus, kids, I'll total it up for you. The #5 Cards outscored Top 25 Michigan by 30 after the break.
U of L was relentless, forcing 10 turnovers in the 3d, five more in the last quarter.
Michigan was 15/23 (6/9) from the field before the break, 4/21 after, able to launch but 3 long balls, hitting none. Wolverine star Katelynn Flaherty couldn't miss in the first half. Literally from beyond the arc, where she went 5/5. After halftime, she could only shake loose for one three point attempt, a miss, and went 2/7 from the field.
The Cards second half rebounding advantage was 10.
Here's the deal: Louisville cracked 'em. Moving their feet on D, trapping in corners and along the sidelines, hawking full court, the Cards forced physical mistakes. The Cards forced mental mistakes. The Wolverines were bothered and bewildered.
So out of sorts were the visitors, they, an 83% FT shooting squad coming in, canned only 5 of 12. U of L was 14/16. 87.5%. Glossy.
So, yeah, the Cardinals started slowly, had trouble connecting on their shots for a half. But came out in the second half ready to inflict a beatdown. Which they did.
The offense was crisp. The defense was, as they say, tenacious. Overwhelming.
Myisha Hines-Allen led the Cards with 19 points and 8 boards. Asia Durr, after a slow start (1/9 from the field in the opening half) finished with 13.
Arica Carter and Dana Evans had four assists each. Sydney Zambrotta, Kylee Shook and Bionca Dunham provided steady relief off the pine.
The University of Louisville women are 4-0, heading into the WNIT final Sunday afternoon at the Yum! against either Oregon or Texas A & M.
-- Seedy K