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Cards Edge the Cats 67-66

Big 3rd quarter helps carry Louisville over rival Kentucky.

Louisville Women’s Basketball Official Twitter Account

Louisville had to overcome two things to get the victory in Rupp Arena today: 1) A hot shooting Kentucky team, and 2) The Wildcats’s miraculous ability to not foul. Kentucky played great offensively especially in the second quarter when four of Louisville’s players were on the bench with 2 fouls apiece. That would not be an issue for the team in blue, however, who had two fouls TOTAL in the first half. In fact, they would go from 30 seconds left in the first quarter until 2:32 left in the the THIRD quarter before being whistled for a foul again. Hats off to Kentucky for playing such perfect basketball.

Nevertheless the Cards showed some tenacity and didn’t fold after getting down double digits on the road. Yacine Diop came in off the bench and made a huge shot in the corner and played ferocious defense. Kylee Shook hit some big shots. By the end of the third quarter Louisville was up 3. In the final quarter the two teams were neck in neck and in the final seconds of the game Kentucky had the ball with a chance to win, but Rhyne Howard missed a jumper and Louisville exhaled and walked off the floor with their Ls Up.

Dana Evans led Louisville in scoring with 18 points to which she added 10 assists. Kylee Shook had another double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds. Bionca Dunham and Jazmine Jones both had 10 points.

This win guaranteed (barring a meeting the in the NCAA Tournament) that the seniors will all graduate without ever losing to Kentucky. After the game Coach Walz talked about how the seniors came up big in the last 10 seconds when Kentucky had a chance to win the game, “Jaz saving that ball inbounds was huge for us because then the clock keeps running. Bionca got back in transition. We got back so there was not a direct line drive. We stopped Haines and made her give the ball up to Howard then Bionca switched up on her and just a remarkable job...making her stay on the right hand and shoot over her.”

When asked about the play of Dana Evans he joked, “I tell her for a wing I’m really impressed with the way she’s passed the ball lately. She calls herself a point guard but we played about three games where she had zero assists so I told her she was an elite wing player. And then our last game I think she had about 8 and then I got a text from her saying, ‘not bad for a wing’ and I said, ‘yeah it’s not.’”

On Kylee Shook he said, “She shot the 3 very well her first 3 years. Then I think she was trying to build a three-story house through the first 11 games with the number of bricks she was throwing up.” He then turned to Kylee and said, “true?” and she laughed and agreed. He continued, “Now she finally came out and she’s starting to bend her knees and get arch on the shot and she made some big ones for us.”

On senior Yacine Diop he said, “I’m really excited and happy for Yacine. It’s been a grind for her. She wants to do so well all the time that sometimes she tries to do too much and then it’s a negative effect. But today she was fantastic. She gets a huge pull-up jump shot for us. She hits a three in the corner and just played within herself.” He added, “Yacine is relentless going after offensive and defensive boards.”

On senior Bionca Dunham he said, “I thought Bionca offensively she goes 5 for 5 from the field....She had two huge offensive rebounds in the 4th quarter that...took about a minute off the clock.” He added, “We out rebounded them 37-17 and that was a huge factor especially with the way they shot the three.”

Next up the Cards travel to UT-Martin on Tuesday the 19th at 7PM. The game can be heard on 790 WKRD.