By Cole Emery —
The No.1 Louisville Cardinals (10-1, 2-0) faced off against in-state Eastern Kentucky University (3-7, 0-0) Saturday, Dec. 14, securing the victory 99-67.
The game opened up with energy, strategy and awareness from the Cardinals. EKU came in as the fourth ranked team in the country for steals and tested the patience of the Cards by running the trap press.
EKU racked up three steals for the first half compared to five by the Cardinals.
The Cards were able to fight the tough press of EKU by smart passing and patience. This awareness, combined with their patience and precision passing, got to the basket against EKU’s zone defense.
A massive dunk by junior Jordan Nwora on the baseline and an alley oop from senior Darius Perry to junior Stephen Enoch brought the energy to the crowd.
Twenty-seven of the 57 shots came from beyond the arc for the teams combined in the first half. Louisville capitalized on 50% of their attempts compared to 26.7% from the Colonels.
The Cardinals held a substantial 50-32 lead going into halftime.
The Colonels came out with a chip on their shoulder, playing with a lot more energy. This intensified play led them to accumulate fouls. EKU racked up seven fouls before the 11 minute mark of the second half.
Even though the Colonels scored more effectively in the second half, the substantial lead by the Cards allowed freshman David Johnson, Samuell Williamson, Josh Nickleberry, Aidan Igiehon and Quinn Slazininski to culminate some valuable minutes against a talented EKU squad.
Nwora finished the game with 26 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and no turnovers. Enoch finished the game with 23 points, seven rebounds, one assist, one block and one steal while shooting 90% from the field.
The Cardinals will be facing off against Miami (OH) Wednesday, Dec. 18. The game will start at 8:30 p.m. in the KFC Yum! Center.
Anna Claire Will // The Louisville Cardinal