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Cards Fall to #23 North Carolina 79-68

NCAA Womens Basketball: Louisville at Connecticut David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

If you want to beat the top tier teams of the ACC then you need to be firing on all cylinders. Unfortunately today the Cards there were several stretches where the engine was sputtering. Coach Walz said, “We were definitely not at our best today.... I thought for 26 minutes we competed. We were right there. Carolina’s a really good team and we just got careless.” He added, “ My concern is our aggressiveness. Urgency.... We didn’t have that today even at the end of the game.”

Inconsistent officiating didn’t help matters either. After a physical first half there were 15 fouls called in the 3rd quarter alone. There were long stretches where the Cards didn’t score. Then when the Cards were trying to close the gap they missed free throw after free throw. Coach Walz said, “We just missed ‘em. It’s not like they fouled players shooting 40 or 50% from the free throw... they just didn’t go in. It sucks.”

Nyla Harris led the Cards with 16 points, 3 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2 assists. Olivia Cochran had 14 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists. Jayda Curry came off the bench to contribute 14 points.

Coach Walz praised the play of Nyla and Olivia. “I thought Nyla and O played extremely well. They battled.” However he also pointed out that “the guards did not do a good job of rebounding the ball. Our posts were in there working our tail off to keep their bigs off the glass and then their guards would come in and clean it up because our guards were just not engaged.”

He finished by saying, “I’m not going away from this game concerned or upset. I mean, sure I’m pissed I hate to lose. Who doesn’t? But I’m not concerned with my team going ‘oh shit the wheels are about to fall off we’ve got problems.’ I do want to get them to be more aggressive.... but overall I’ll take this team to battle all day every day.”

Next up the Cards come back home to meet Boston College. The game is Thursday at 7PM and can be seen on ACC Network Extra.