October 18, 2011

Dieng and Siva carry their teams in the red-white game

By Aaron Williams–

Get your tally marks ready because Louisville junior guard Peyton Siva has broken his first set of ankles in the 2011-2012 season. His crossover in the final seconds was just what Siva needed to clear red team defender Gorgui Dieng out of the lane for a drive that ended in Siva kissing a bank shot off the backboard with two seconds remaining to give his white team the 86-85 edge over Dieng’s red team on the evening of Friday Oct. 14 at the KFC Yum! Center.

“I love those last second situations,” Siva told the Courier-Journal. “I don’t even have to score, but you know nobody stepped up.”

“Peyton is just in better shape than everybody. He can outrun everybody, when everybody else is tired, he’s fresh,” said Louisville head coach Rick Pitino in comments he made following the inter-squad scrimmage.

Siva finished the red-white game with 19 points, nine steals, seven assists and seven rebounds.

The white team also received a strong contribution from senior guard Kyle Kuric, who led them in points scored with 24.

Dieng led the red team in scoring and rebounding, posting 26 points, 17 rebounds and five blocks on the night. Dieng also racked up six fouls.

“Gorgui Dieng is very strong if we can keep him in the game. He’s got to learn to block shots and when to, what I call, post up defense,” said Pitino.

Dieng was helped in his effort by freshman forward Chane Behanan who managed 20 points and 10 rebounds in his first performance as a Cardinal. However, even the combined assault of the two big men inside for the red team was not enough to overcome the defensive pressure of the white squad, who forced red to commit 35 turnovers over the course of the game.

Behanan would leave the court late in the second half with a sprained ankle. Fellow freshman center Zach Price also had a nice showing for the white team with 14 points and six boards.

The white squad got significant minutes out of sophomore guard Russ Smith who had 17 points and grabbed seven steals.

“This year I’m going to play hard and things are going to all into place,” Smith told the Courier-Journal following the game.

The Cardinals were not all healthy for the inter-squad scrimmage Friday. Notable players not on the court included junior forward Stephen Van Treese, junior forward Rakeem Buckles and freshman guard Wayne Blackshear.

“We are deep when we’re healthy,” said Pitino.

For Cards fans, there was a small silver lining in seeing a healthy Jared Swopshire return. The junior forward had modest numbers with seven points and nine rebounds but looked aggressive and strong on the court.

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Photo: Cody Hibbard/The Louisville Cardinal

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