By Dalton Ray–
Earning the fifth-seed in the conference tournament, the No. 14 women’s basketball (25-6, 12-4) team travels to Conway, South Carolina tomorrow for the ACC tournament. The Cardinals will play March 2 at 11 a.m., facing the winner of 12-seed Virginia Tech (17-12, 4-12) and 13-seed Clemson (14-15, 3-13).
Louisville defeated the Hokies by 18 on Feb. 9 and downed the Tigers by 14 on Jan. 26.
U of L is 0-4 against the top four seeds in the tournament, but coach Jeff Walz feels confident his team can make a run.
“We’re as healthy as we have been if you take out Briahanna Jackson, who won’t play this week because of her back. Asia (Durr), Myisha (Hines-Allen) and Mariya (Moore) are all doing well and healthy. I feel really good about our freshmen,” Walz said. “We’ve got a good group right now. Our depth has got a lot of experience the past two weeks.”
One-seed Notre Dame (27-3, 15-1) is the only team in the top four to beat Louisville by more than seven points.
If Louisville wins their opening game, the Cardinals will take on four-seed North Carolina State (22-7, 12-4). The Wolfpack beat the Cards on a last second shot in overtime on Feb. 2.
“If we’re able to get to (play NC State), it’ll be fun to play them with a full team. We didn’t have Myisha for that game,” Walz said. “Their guards are extremely good. If we’re fortunate enough to get to the quarterfinal game, we’ll have our hands full.”
The semifinals are March 4 with the championship being played the next day. Walz has no worries about needing to win four games in four days to take home an ACC championship.
“I’m not concerned about four games in four days because these kids are all playing all summer before they get to us, playing two or three AAU games a day for a week straight. I do like our games times (11 a.m., 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m.) because it’s great rest,” Walz said.
Photo by Nancy Hanner / The Louisville Cardinal