Asia Taylor set new career highs in scoring and rebounding with 25 points and 15 rebounds as third ranked Louisville defeated twenty fifth ranked Rutgers 73-58 on Sunday at the KFC YUM! Center.
Along with Taylor’s fifth double-double of the season, Sara Hammond collected her fifth double-double of the season too with 12 points and 11 rebounds.
“It means nothing without the win. I’m happy that I got a career-high in both of those. That’s great. It just shows that I was out there working hard,” Taylor said. “But without the win, without Sara out there battling with me and Shoni getting me the ball and everybody playing together, that really means nothing. So I’m just happy about the win than anything.”
Rutgers (20-6) battled with the Cardinals early, leading 15-10, but Louisville closed the half out on a 15-5 run after trailing 21-19 with 9:02 in the first half.
Louisville (27-2) struggled from behind the arc, shooting just 5 of 22 (21.7%), but worked the ball inside, scoring 34 points in the paint.
“Once we started to attack early, we realized that we could use our quickness and athleticism to get around them instead of trying to score over them,” Taylor said.
The Cardinals also capitalized off of 18 Scarlet Knight turnovers, converting them into 23 points.
“We have done a really nice job of converting their turnovers into points and that is what you have to do. I thought Jude Schimmel’s steal and layup was a huge play in the game. It was just a really, really big play,” U of L head coach Jeff Walz said. “They kind of gained the momentum and then all of a sudden we took it back on that play. That is what we have to do.”
Shoni Schimmel scored 13 points and added four assists.
Bria Smith returned to the starting lineup after coming off of the bench for two games. She finished with three points and five rebounds.
Louisville travels to Cincinnati on Saturday to play the Bearcats (12-15).
“We are going up to play a Cincinnati ball club that is always a big game. We have been playing each other for so long, that our players understand it is a rivalry game. So we are going to have to make sure that we are prepared, because they are playing for pride too, and they want nothing better, than to knock us off,” Walz said.