Sunday, February 8, 2009

Wasn't Pretty but I'll take it

Louisville got out hustled, shot 38%, shot 3-17 from downtown, and played the second half without Samardo Samuels.

So after playing a C game at best and still walk away with a road win....I'll take it but it doesn't mean Card fans shouldn't be worried.
Over the last 100 minutes (2 and a half games) of basketball, the Cards have played the lazy and complacent basketball that led to 3 losses in the month on December.

I was pleased with the aggressiveness of Jerry Smith through out the game. Scoring a season high 21 points but the thing I liked the most that he was 11-11 from the free throw line.

Louisville for the second straight game did not control the tempo and allowed the opposing teams guards to control the game. St. John's as a team came into the game averaging 14 turnovers a game, but with the return of Malik Boothe( 3 assists and 1 turnover) the Red Storm only had 10 turnovers (7 in the second half).

While Terrence Williams went 0-7 from the field, that didn't bother me as much as it was his shot selections. He settled way to many times for 18 footers when he could have kept his dribble and made it a 12 foot floater attempt instead. A shot that he has been showing a better touch on over the last 8 games. A shot that when its on, he is nearly unstoppable.
With 5 minutes left roughly, a loose ball was grabbed by Sean Evans leaping out of he turned in mid air to throw the ball off a Cards player (a old school favorite by everyone). The Cardinal he aimed at was Earl Clark. As Clark saw Evans aim the ball at him, he (Clark) didn't prepare to grab the ball or even move out the way to allow it to stay in play. No, Clark flinched turning his back to the ball and Evans. Something your 8 year old brother would do in a game of pick up. I tell you this story cause as I watched it I thought to myself...that one play summed up the Earl Clark career to this point.
St. John's struggled when forced to go against the Cardinal 2-3 zone in the half court. But Louisville's half court defense has been their (Cards) most consistent attribute. Paris Horne, who has been on fire over the las t 5 games was held to 9 points and was never able to get into a groove or get a good look, going 4-15 overall and 0-7 from three point land.
Cards better shape it up before they head on the road again on Thursday to Notre Dame. A team that has their backs against the wall and has been on a downward spiral since losing to the Cards back on January 12th.

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