Tag Archives: Luke Hancock

Photo by Austin Lassell

Men’s basketball run ends as it falls to Kentucky in Sweet Sixteen

By Annie Moore

The Louisville men’s basketball  team saw its season come to an end in the Sweet Sixteen against in-state rival Kentucky, 74-69.  The loss marked what head coach Rick Pitino called ‘the end of an era’.


“We’ve done a lot of celebrating, so we’re going to be gracious in defeat,” Pitino said. “It’s the end of an era.”


The game marked the last for seniors Russ Smith, Luke Hancock, Tim Henderson and Stephan Van Treese. It also marked the probable end for sophomore Montrezl Harrell — who will be discussing with his family and Coach Pitino options for his future, including entering the NBA.


Louisville led its final game of the season for 37 minutes, but Kentucky won the battle on the boards and with all of the Cards’ big men in foul trouble, the Wildcats drove in the paint to take the lead down the stretch.


“It hurts,” Harrell said. “For us to be that close, to have a lead like that and give it right back, it just hurts. There’s no other way you can put it.”


Smith finished his final game as a Cardinal with a team-leading 23 points, three assists and two rebounds. Hancock had 19 points, and Harrell had 15 points and eight rebounds.


“I just want to be looked at as a great competitor,” Smith said. “I respect the game a lot, and whatever it is, I just want it to be a positive legacy.”


Van Treese weighed in on his teammate of four years, and what he thinks Smith’s legacy will be.


“[Smith] is a Louisville legend, they should probably hang his jersey up,” Van Treese said. “He’s one of those types of players that is very rare to come into someone’s program and do the things he’s done.”


Julius Randle, Dakari Johnson and Aaron Harrison all had 15 points for Kentucky. Andrew Harrison added 14 points and seven assists. Randle also added 12 rebounds, while the Harrison twins added eight rebounds.


The Cards finished the season 31-6, none of its losses were by more than nine points.

Luke Hancock

Cards swat SLU Billikens away to reach Sweet 16

Luke Hancock

By Annie Moore–

The University of Louisville basketball team defeated St. Louis University 66-51 Saturday afternoon, in a game that was anything but perfect, to advance to its third-consecutive Sweet 16. Both teams struggled to get started on offense until Louisville found its rhythm in the waning minutes of the second half.


“We said we had to be the prettiest team in an ugly game,” said Louisville Head Coach Rick Pitino. “We just wanted to grind out a W, we grinded it out, and that’s what the NCAA tournament is all about.”


Luke Hancock had a leading performance for the Cardinals, the senior forward scored Louisville’s first eight points, and led all scorers with 21 points on the day.


Defense played a huge part in Louisville’s victory, especially its effort to stop Saint Louis from scoring the three-point shot. The Billikens were 0-15 from outside the arc and shot just 39.6% from the field.


“We were going to smother the three,” Pitino said. “We felt that if we gave up the three, we could lose the game today. So, we were going to take that away. We were going to hang our hat on taking away the three.”

Senior guard Russ Smith shared Pitino’s sentiment, noting his teams’ defensive maturation throughout this tournament, and this game.


“I think our defense got better at communicating,” Smith said. “Everything just went up a notch, Saint Louis is a great team, but we did a good job of locking it in the last fifteen minutes.”


Smith had 11 points and three rebounds on the day, but struggled offensively in the first half. His only field goal of the half came with just 45 seconds left before the break.


Offensive struggles continued for the Cards in the beginning of the second half, Louisville didn’t make a field goal until six minutes into the half. The Billikens tied it up with 14:33 left in the game, and the teams traded baskets for the following minutes, until Louisville started to pull away with 10 minutes remaining.


A three-pointer from Hancock put the Cards up six with 10:51 left, and it was all Louisville from there. Smith, Chris Jones and Montrezl Harrell all had shots down the stretch to secure the Cards’ lead.


Louisville advances to the Sweet 16 in Indianapolis  to play the University of Kentucky Friday at 9:45 p.m..  Cardinal fans will doubtless be heading north on Interstate 65 for the game . SStay tuned as the Cardinal brings you unparalelled coverage of the NCAA Tournament from a student’s perspective.


Photo by Austin Lassell

Cards defeat Manhattan in thriller

By Annie Moore

The Louisville Cardinals opened NCAA Tournament play on Thursday night, when it defeated the Manhattan Jaspers 71-64 in an instant classic. After trading shots for the majority of the game, Luke Hancock stepped up in the final minutes of regulation to lift the Cards over the Jaspers.

“I think we needed this,” said Louisville Head Coach Rick Pitino. “This was a great win for us, we can move on, and I think it will really help us. I’m glad we had a tight game that we had to fight back.”

Louisville got out to a slow start, shooting just 36% (12-of-33) from the field in the first half. Luke Hancock and Russ Smith each had eight points in the first half to lead the Cards. Montrezl Harrell had six points, and led the team in first-half rebounds with five, and blocks with two.

Smith had two steals on the night, which made him the all-time steals leader in University of Louisville history. The previous record was 245 steals, set by Peyton Siva.

While Louisville’s offense was sluggish in the first half, so was the Jaspers’. Each team made 12 shots, with Manhattan attempting 27. As is the case so many times, free throws were the difference, the Cards were 10-12 from the line, whereas Manhattan was just 2-2.

Headed into the second half, the Cards came out flat. Manhattan scored a quick four points to cut Louisville’s lead to just two points. It took Louisville four minutes to score a point in the second half.

The Jaspers tied it up 35-35 with 17:15 left in the game, and took its first lead with 16:22 left. A dunk from Montrezl Harrell with 16:04 left tied the score back up at 37-37.

The teams traded points in a second half that proved to be a battle to the very end. The second half saw constant lead changes, as the Cards piled up fouls and struggled to connect from outside the three-point arc.  The Cards were 4-13 on the night, whereas the Jaspers were 3-5.

But Hancock never said die. The senior scored eight points in the final two minutes of regulation to put Louisville on top when the final buzzer sounded.

Next up for Louisville, the Billikens of St. Louis University.


No. 11 Louisville beats No. 19 UConn 81-48

By Sam Draut–

No. 11 Louisville celebrated the careers of the four seniors who have seen the most wins in their careers in Cardinal history as Louisville routed No. 19 Connecticut 81-48 on Saturday at the KFC YUM! Center.

Stephan Van Treese, Tim Henderson, Luke Hancock, and Russ Smith were all honored before the game, then started and played integral roles in the Cardinals first victory over a ranked team at home this season.

Montrezl Harrell led Louisville (26-5) with 20 points and 11 rebounds, his ninth double-double of the season.

“He’s an incredible basketball player right now. He’s improved his passing. He’s improved his dribbling. He’s improved his one-on-one moves,” coach Rick Pitino said.

Hancock paced the seniors in scoring, hitting four three-pointers, finishing with 16 points and three rebounds.

But Smith stole the show, passing his way to a career high 13 assists.  In 30 minutes of play, Smith took just two shots from the field, scoring three points and adding four steals.

“I can’t ever imagine Russ Smith, knowing him, on senior night, would pass up all opportunities to score and get 13 assists. It shows you how much he has grown,” Pitino said. “He got to play point guard and he knows the role of a point guard, which is pass before shot.”

Van Treese, starting his ninth consecutive game, pulled down a season high 13 rebounds and scored six points.

“We need him to play exactly the way he played,” Pitino said. “We need him because now he’s a legitimate player that helps us win the game so now we fully expect him to play that way every night.”

Tim Henderson logged 14 minutes in his first career start and scored two points.

Louisville opened the game on a 17-5 run through the first eight minutes.  Connecticut (24-7) started the game 0 of 8 from the field, but settled in an trailed 30-18 at halftime.

“If we can play that stifling defense, we are a tough team,” Pitino said. “We have been playing 90-100% man this season, and tonight we went all zone, which I thought we played awesome.”

Connecticut’s offensive struggles stemmed from a poor performance from the Huskie’s backcourt of  Shabazz Napier and Ryan Boatright.  UConn’s two leading scorers combined for 13 points on 4 of 24 shooting from the field.

“The biggest focus on the game was wearing those two guys out physically without fouling,” Pitino said.

After going five games without hitting a three-pointer, Wayne Blackshear connected with three on Saturday and finished with 11 points.

Chris Jones added 10 points off the bench.

With the win, Louisville won a share of the AAC regular season title with Cincinnati.

“We are happy with it, as long as we have a share of it,” Pitino said. “I think that is great and they have had a terrific season. We are excited about it. We will share it with anybody and we had a great season. I am very proud of our guys. ”

Photo Courtesy of Adam Mathieu/ the Oracle

Louisville routs USF

By Noah Allison

The twelfth ranked University of Louisville men’s basketball team rolled over USF 86-47 Wednesday night at the Sun Dome in Tampa, Florida stretching their conference winning streak to four games.

Once again, U of L, 17-3, received a boost off the bench from junior forward Wayne Blackshear.  He led all scorers with 16 points and hit three of the Cardinals twelve three pointers.

Montrezl Harrell contributed with his fifth double-double of the season, he finished with 14 points and ten rebounds.

For just the second time in his career, Mangok Mathiang scored in double figures, finishing with 10 points.

Chris Jones remained out of the lineup due to injury, in his absence; Terry Rozier scored 9 points and dished out five assists.

Luke Hancock added 14 points.

U of L faces Cincinnati next Thursday at the KFC YUM! Center at 7:00.

Louisville falls to Memphis

By Noah Allison

Rekindling a conference rivalry of old, the Louisville Cardinals played host to

the Memphis Tigers on Thursday night. Memphis won 73-67, putting their overall

record at 11-3, and putting Louisville’s at 13-3. The third loss of the season for the

Cardinals reveals that the young defending national champions still have some

polishing up to do.

“We have to give them credit. We didn’t play really well. We turned it over at

crucial times, got into low defense, gave up the 3 and missed free throws, but we

have to give them credit. They outplayed us,” U of L head coach Rick Pitino said.

With the score tied at 67 with one minute and thirty-one seconds left, the

Cardinals missed their last four jump shots and had a series of defensive miscues

that surrendered the lead and led to the loss.

“In the end we had a little bit of a miscommunication, some people were in a

two-three and others were in man defense. So we just had a couple of mistakes but

you just can’t have that at the end of a basketball game, especially a big game like

this in conference play,” said freshman guard Terry Rozier. “Tonight, just wasn’t our


Louisville had twelve steals to Memphis’ eight, but gave up second chance

points and failed to switch on defense at certain times. Memphis outrebounded

Louisville 37 to 35.

“Our defense is not as good this year. It hasn’t been. I hate to keep beating

that horse to death, but it hasn’t been. We had three key situations. We’re in control

of our destiny; we got in the wrong defense and then ran out of it and gave up the 3.

That may be the most bone headed play I’ve ever witnessed in my life,”Pitino said.

Senior forward Luke Hancock led the Cardinals in scoring with 20 points and

senior guard Russ Smith was second in scoring with 19 points. Sophomore forward

Montrezl Harrell led the team in rebounds with 14 and minutes played with 37.

Since the ultimate suspension of forward Chane Behanan the role of Harrell has

significantly increased. And seniors Smith and Hancock have to play their best each

and every game. That being said, none of the three captains have proven to live up

to the leadership void left by the graduation of last year’s starting point guard

Peyton Siva. Siva not only proved to be the consummate professional, but set the

Cardinals all time single season steals record with 90.

“There is no leader on the team… You have to be a defensive player to be a

leader; you can’t be an offensive player. It takes defense to win. They shot 51

percent. You can’t give up 51 percent at home and expect to win a ball game.”

Louisville is now 2-1 in American Athletic play. The Louisville-Memphis

rivalry has now covered four conferences, dating back to the Missouri Valley

Conference, Metro Conference, Conference USA and now the American Athletic

Conference. The Cardinals will play Memphis in Memphis on March 1.

The expectations for this year’s Cardinals prove not to be unfair, but it cannot

be understated that this simply is not last year’s team. Three starters from last years

line-up are not Cardinals. A third loss isn’t pleasant, but the fact that they were a

series of good plays away in all three losses should be reflective of what this team

can be come March.

“I don’t think anybody is losing faith, some people will be upset about the

way the game went tonight,” Hancock said. ”But bottom line we know we are a good team, we know we have some growing to do, and hopefully we just have each others back and get better with each practice.”

U of L men's basketball champion Luke Hancock bestows a medal on 11-year cancer survivor Kinsey Morrison.

People who make things happen: U of L hosts Relay for Life

By Maggie Cunningham–

U of L men’s basketball champion Luke Hancock bestows a medal on 11-year cancer survivor Kinsey Morrison.

Every year, more than 40 million people all over the world participate in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. On Friday, April 13, 55 fundraising teams of students at the University of Louisville gathered at the Lutz Hall lawn, rallying and relaying through the night raising more than $34,000 for cancer research.

A relay event has been held on U of L’s campus for many years. In preparation for the relay, participants form teams, and raise donations to meet a goal set by each team’s self-appointed leader. “Donations can be gained by sending out email templates asking people to donate money on your behalf, and you can also spread the word personally, there’s many different ways to collect donations,” said Ricardo Ullrich, a sophomore political science major who is part of the event organization.

Samantha Maloney, a political science junior, participated in her second Relay for Life this year at the U of L. “This is a great cause, and a really good promotion. A lot of people are affected by cancer and the university supporting it and bringing it on campus shows that they care,” Maloney said.

“One member of each team always has to be on the track at all times, walking all through the night for 12 hours,” said Maloney. Each team sets up a booth or tent with an activity for the relaying participants to do during their laps. While at least one team member is relaying around the track to each of the booths, the rest of the team stays and works the booth activities. Team members can tag each other in and out, relaying throughout the night.

At the kickoff of the relay, several local cancer survivors were recognized on the main stage. Kinsey Morrison, a 16 year old junior at St. Francis High School and an 11 year survivor of a rare blood cancer, testified about what the Relay for Life means to her. Morrison said, “This past week all of us found out the U of L has the best basketball team in the country, but it looks to me like we have one of the best relay teams in the country too.”

“Whether it is the basketball team or a relay team, there are three types of people in the world. There are people who make things happen, people who watch things happen, and people that say, ‘what happened?’ It seems like all of the U of L teams are people who make things happen.” Morrison said.

“I was just one scared patient. Multiply that times 25,160. That is the number of Kentuckians that are diagnosed with cancer every single year.  That is one every 21 minutes. One person every 21 minutes that will hear the words that will change their life forever. One person every 21 minutes who like me, 11 years ago, is afraid they won’t make it until their next birthday. One person every 21 minutes who doesn’t have any idea what they should do next. One person every 21 minutes who needs the American Cancer Society, and one person every 21 minutes who needs all of you,” Morrison continued.

Following her testimony, Morrison, alongside seven other survivors were awarded medals by NCAA men’s basketball champions Luke Hancock, Tim Henderson and Stephan Van Treese. The champions and the survivors along with their support systems and caretakers led the first lap to get the evening started.

Laps throughout the night were dedicated to different people, groups or things. One of which is the luminary ceremony. People who lost their battles against cancer are remembered, and those who are fighting or have fought are also honored at this time.

“This is a predominately Greek-oriented event, but we are trying to expand the scope,” said Ullrich. This year, along with many different greek organizations, teams such as Beka’s Toppers, and Third Base Perks participated in the fundraising event.

The students who organize the Relay for Life on campus are also in the process of applying to become an Recognized Student Organization. Ullrich said, “Right now, we’re only an executive board; we’re a group of ten or so students who have come together to organize this whole event for everybody.” As an RSO, the group is hoping to be able to become more involved in cancer prevention on campus. Ullrich continued, “We want to do the best we can to prevent anybody from having to experience the toll that cancer can have on you.”

Photos by Maggie Cunningham/The Louisville Cardinal


Unbreakable: Louisville’s Inspired 2013 Championship Run

In celebration of the University of Louisville’s NCAA Championship victory over the University of Michigan, The Louisville Cardinal, the independent student newspaper, is proud to announce the publication of “Unbreakable: Louisville’s Inspired 2013 Championship Run,” an instant book released by Triumph Books.

The 128-page full-color book, available on April 15, is packed with Louisville Cardinal stories and dramatic photos from throughout Louisville’s historic season, including the Cardinals’ inspiring NCAA tournament run!

The softcover book includes profiles of head coach Rick Pitino, Russ Smith, Peyton Siva, Gorgui Dieng, Luke Hancock and other Louisville stars. Plus, there is a bonus section on the Louisville women’s run to the Final Four.

“The staff of the Louisville Cardinal rose to the occasion to produce an instant championship book,” said Mickey Meece, the adviser. “The photography and features and profiles capture the spirit of the team and the jubilation of Card Nation.”

Relive the heart-stopping moments and unforgettable accomplishments of a team that won America’s heart. Enjoy the work of student journalists, with an introduction by Louisville’s renowned sports journalist Billy Reed.

About the book: Full-color glossy, softcover, 8.5 x 11 inches, and 128 full-color pages

Only $14.95, plus $6 shipping and handling
Add $1 S&H for each additional book.

How to Order
Contact The Louisville Cardinal; office@louisvillecardinal.com, Call Lisa Potter, business manager: 502.852.0701, Fax: 502.852.0700.

Order online at www.triumphbooks.com

Or call IPG at 1-800-888-4741, between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.


The Louisville Cardinal Inc. is a nonprofit organization. Proceeds from the book will go to buy equipment, train and support student journalists at the University of Louisville. To interview the student journalists, please contact Mickey Meece.

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MVP: Luke Hancock brings in the three’s

By Sammie Hill – 

Update: 1:56 am, 4/9/13

The first half of the National Championship appeared bleak for Louisville until Luke Hancock stepped in and gave an inspired performance. The Virginia native helped Louisville secure an 82-76 victory over Michigan while instilling hope in his team and its fans.

Hancock remained solid on Monday night when the rest of the team seemed a step behind the Wolverines. Determined to keep Louisville from falling behind in the first half, Hancock scored 14 points in two and a half minutes. Sinking 3-pointer after 3-pointer, Hancock kept the Cardinals in the game and provided the team—and the Louisville crowd—with much needed momentum.

“We needed a rally, and we’ve been doing it for a couple of games straight, being down,” Hancock said. “We just had to wait and make our run.”

Driven by the personal motto to “play hard and have fun,” the junior forward has made an impact since arriving at Louisville last year. The 6-foot-6, 200 pound player transferred to U of L from George Mason University last season. However, Hancock’s transfer status forced him to sit out the 2011-12 season. Nevertheless, Hancock earned the title of co-captain this year due to his leadership abilities on and off the court. He clearly displayed this leadership Monday night.

“I just thought we needed something,” Hancock said. “I tried to do whatever I could to help the team. I usually take a back seat to Russ and Peyton, which I’m fine with since they are such great players. I just hit a few shots.”

Although Hancock recognized the significance of Monday’s game, he tried to maintain a steady mindset.

“In the game, you just try to treat it like any other game,” Hancock said. “Just try to go out there and play. If you’re open, shoot it. If you’re not, drive it and pass it to another guy.”

With a total of 22 points, Hancock made all five of these 3-pointers Monday night and led the Cardinals to their first NCAA victory since 1986. With leading scorer Russ Smith struggling, Hancock stepped up to keep Louisville in the game.

“As soon as we started playing Luke Hancock more, our halfcourt offense evolved into something that was very special. Luke is a play maker along with Peyton,” said Coach Rick Pitino.

“Coach Pitino made this feel like home. I’m so excited for our team to be in this situation and finally be here,” said Hancock,

Sunday Pitino said, “His father getting to that game, being there, was awesome.”

“There’s no way to describe how it feels that my dad was here,” said Hancock.

As senior guard Peyton Siva and sophomore forward Chane Behanan began to contribute multiple points as well, Louisville gained the advantage and clung to victory as Hancock’s 3-pointer at 3:27 left put Louisville up double digits for the first time all game. The Cardinals were able to hold onto victory until the end of the game.

“It doesn’t get any better than this,” Hancock said after the game.

Injured guard Kevin Ware mirrored Hancock’s excitement.

“These are my brothers,” Ware said. “They got the job done. I’m so proud of them, so proud of them.”


Austin Lassell/The Louisville Cardinal

Halftime Breakdown: UL vs. MI

By Randy Whetstone Jr. –

The first half was a Michael “Spike” Albrecht and Luke Hancock 3-point shootout. Michigan was up by as many as 12 points. After the national player of the year Trey Burke went to the bench due to foul trouble, the freshman for the Wolverines stepped up.

Albrecht hit four of the team’s six 3-point shots. He scored 17 of the team’s 38 points. The Cards were in desperate need of a spurt on offense. Twelve seems to be the magic number for Louisville to turn on the switch.

After the largest deficit in the first half, it was Luke Hancock again for the Cardinals making his presence known. He scored 14 points in a 2:33 span. He hit four straight 3-point shots, and Montrezl Harrell topped it off for the Cards after receiving the alley-oop slam from Siva to give Louisville their first lead of the game 37-36. In thirteen minutes, Hancock went perfect from the field, 4-4 and scored a team high 16 points.

The two teams finished the half with Michigan leading by one point at 38-37.