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Louisville Falls to UNC 66-65

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Syndication: The Courier-Journal Scott Utterback/Courier Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Frustration bit the Cards in this game. Any time they started to extend their lead North Carolina would claw back in part because of instead of Louisville playing through a missed shot or a no call or a bad call they instead would make a silly foul or complain. There are times it seems like Emily Engstler is being baited by opposing teams and even the officials into losing her cool but tonight she almost seemed to be baiting the official into a technical. He obliged.

Hailey Van Lith led Louisville in scoring with 17. Olivia Cochran had 14 points and 5 rebounds. Emily Engstler had 11 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 blocked shots.

After the game Coach Walz said, “We just got sloppy with the basketball. We just did some things that are uncharacteristic of us so we’ll watch some film and get back to work.”

Coach Sam Purcell said, “For us to get out rebounded by 10 (42-32)...we’re going to have a lot of good film when we get back that we need right now to get it going.”

On offense he said, “It’s unfortunate. The last four games we played so solid. We did things that just weren’t Louisville basketball and making the simple plays. Give credit to North Carolina. It’s a top 25 team.” He added, “Some of the things we did on offense got us out of our defensive mindset. That’s why you saw so many fouls and uncharacteristic rotations.”

On defense, “We could never get that one stop. It should have never come down to that. We let our emotions get the best of us. There’s just a lot of things that I haven’t seen with this team that I’m excited that we can get back to practice. Hopefully this burns a little bit.”

Coach Walz said he told the team, “We’ve got a good enough team to get to the Final Four but we’ve also have a team that could lose in the second round because when you get to the second round you’re playing somebody in the middle of a power 5 conference. Somebody who’s good. When we’re dialed in and focused we’re really, really good but if we’re not then this is what you’re going to get... a drag out, knock down, down to the wire game. Unfortunately today we weren’t as dialed in to the scouting report as we normally are.”

Sunday is Senior Day at the Yum Center. This week Alahna Smith and Mykasa Robinson announced that they would take advantage of their extra year because of Covid. That leaves Kianna Smith, Emily Engstler, Liz Dixon to participate. The game is against Virginia Tech at 2PM and can be seen on the ACC Network.