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Flashback Friday: Louisville survives Final Four scare from Wichita State

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Tim Henderson forever.

Louisville v Wichita State Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Quick Hitters

-For last week’s post, I put a poll on Twitter and let the people choose which game I wrote about and did film review on. For this one, I figured we saw enough about polls and voting this week, so I chose it myself. I also personally wanted to watch it again because usually I just watch the National Championship game from that weekend, but I haven’t gone back and watched this one too many times.

-The game was played on April 6, 2013.

-Starters for the Cards: Peyton Siva, Russ Smith, Wayne Blackshear, Chane Behanan, Gorgui Dieng.

-This was a pretty rough game to watch for the first half. Wichita started the game on an 8-0 run. Russ started 0/4 from the field and 0/4 from the free throw line. It didn’t look good. With 7:09 left in the first half, we were tied at 13. So yes, not too explosive of a first half.

-Louisville then went on a 9-0 run and suddenly we were up 9-8 and had a game again. Despite Russ’ early struggles, you know he kept shooting. He buried his next two three pointers and finished with 21 points on 6/17 shooting and was 5/12 from the free throw line. Not great shooting numbers, but after the start he had, you take them. He also had five turnovers. This was a classic game where you got all of Russ, the good and the bad. You just take it and roll with it.

-Entering the game, Gorgui and Chane were averaging a combined 21 points per game. With 2:31 left to play in the first half, they had no points on only one shot taken. They finished with 10 points, and when I say “they”, I mean Chane. Gorgui took one shot all game and missed, but still had six rebounds and two blocks.

-The first half ended with Wichita leading 26-25.

-With 13:15 remaining in the game, Louisville trailed 47-35. Russ picked up his third foul. This was…not good. Russ goes to the bench. Enter Tim Henderson. You know what happens.

-Even after Henderson’s two three pointers to cut the lead to six, it still took a while for the Cards to get the lead. Wichita kept the lead in the six to eight-point range for several minutes. Louisville just kept chipping away and would get it down to four a couple times. Chane started to enforce his will down low, and Luke Hancock began his campaign for Most Outstanding Player on his way to 20 points on 6/9 shooting and 3/5 from three. Solid campaign, Luke.

-I specifically remember when Wichita was up nine and missed a free throw, got their own rebound and buried a three (in the film review) and we were down 12. It started to hit me that we may have wasted our time driving down to Atlanta that day. It really may end tonight. You miss a free throw and then get it back and hit a three? It just felt like it was slipping away. Happy to be wrong there.

-Montrezl Harrell really played a good game in this one as well. His role that season was to come in and provide a spark and energy off the bench and that is exactly what he did. He played hard, dove on the floor, had at least one offensive rebound tip in, and had eight points and four rebounds in only 11 minutes played. He kept the rim in tact so he could destroy it on Monday night.

-The two best pros in this game actually came off the bench: Montrezl Harrell and Fred VanVleet.

-Personal story regarding this game. When I went to purchase our four tickets for the weekend, we were going to put them on my mom’s card and we would all pay her back. For whatever reason, several attempts would not work with her card and I could not get them ordered. I had to use my card, which honestly barely had enough to cover the full cost, but it worked so we went with it. Whatever. We had our tickets for the Final Four. Who needs money?

We take a cab to the Georgia Dome, and I have to use my card to get us all in since they were paperless tickets that I got. It works, we are good. Soon after the game starts, my mom realizes she left her purse in the cab. That all works out, we are able to reach the driver and he takes it back to the hotel. No harm, no foul. However, it hits me, and I say to her “If the tickets originally went through and worked on your card, we would not be in this arena now. We would be outside for who knows how long waiting on that cab to come back with your purse and missing the game!” Crazy how things work out.

-Go Wichita Tim. Go Luke. And Go Cards!

-As always, thank you for checking this out. Should have two more of these flashback posts before we can review some new games!

Film Review