By Mike Gilpatrick–
Honoring the career of three seniors, No. 14 women’s basketball (24-6, 11-4) defeated Virginia (18-10, 7-8) 66-55. The game was a defensive bout until the fourth quarter when the Cards won on Virginia’s miscues.
Louisville out-rebounded the Cavaliers 43-24. Coach Jeff Walz said it’s one of the best rebounding performances the Cardinals have shown.
“I was really proud of how we battled on the boards,” Walz said. “It was a point of emphasis, and we have done a great job of following through it.”
Sophomore Asia Durr connected with a jumper just 22 seconds into the game. The game remained tied at five through the next seven minutes as both sides struggled scoring. Two more baskets by Durr and a jumper from freshman Jazmine Jones gave Louisville the 11-8 advantage through the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Jones kicked off a 7-0 run for the Cardinals. An eight-point quarter by junior Myisha Hines-Allen gave Louisville a 29-18 lead at halftime.
Durr led all scorers with 13 points at the break. With low shooting from both teams, Louisville maintained the lead by scoring off turnovers, holding a 11-3 advantage.
Virginia started the third quarter with a 10-2 run, pulling within three points of Louisville.
On the back of Hines-Allen, Louisville rebuilt their lead. The forward finished the quarter with eight points as the Cards entered the fourth quarter leading 42-35.
In the fourth quarter, freshman guard Sydney Zambrotta made two 3-pointers to keep Louisville’s lead. Virginia’s comeback attempt was squandered through miscues and lack of rebounding.
Durr finished with 24 points and seven rebounds, while Hines-Allen had 21 points and nine rebounds. Jones added eight points as the only other Cardinal to score more than six points.
Senior Cortnee Walton said keeping her emotions in check was difficult.
“I tried to stay strong because it’s hard realizing this could be my last home game here. But it was a great experience,” Walton said.
The Cards travel to Wake Forest (15-13, 6-9) Feb. 26 in the regular season finale.
Photos by Laurel Slaughter / The Louisville Cardinal