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    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Women’s Basketball Facebook Page
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    The University of Louisville women’s basketball team has had a very good season. The Cardinals will try to make it even better this weekend.

    Fresh off a 24-5 regular season that saw it go 12-4 in its inaugural Atlantic Coast Conference campaign, UofL will play in the ACC Tournament - which features six ranked teams - in Greensboro, N.C. beginning Friday night. 

    The Cards, who are the No. 3 seed tourney, received a double-bye into the quarterfinals. They’ll play sixth-seeded North Carolina, which routed 11th-seed Georgia Tech 84-64 Thursday night, at 8 p.m. Friday. Louisville rallied to beat UNC 75-66 Feb. 15 at the KFC Yum! Center.

    “It’s not like you’re sitting here looking at an easy quarterfinal ball game,” UofL coach Jeff Walz said after his team’s regular-season home finale against Boston College. “We know that we’re going to have to continue to get better.”

    If Louisville wins it will play the winner between No. 2 seed Florida State and seventh-seeded Pittsburgh or 15th-seeded Virginia Tech at 2:30 p.m. Saturday in the tourney semifinals (a game that will be televised on ESPNU). The ACC final is set for 1 p.m. Sunday and will be televised on ESPN.

    The Cards, who are ranked No. 10 in both national polls, are coming off a very successful regular season. They outscored their opponents by nearly 17 points per game (74-57.2), had winning streaks of eight and nine games, went 16-1 at home and four of their losses (Kentucky, Florida State, Duke and Notre Dame) were to ranked teams. A strong showing in the ACC Tournament could improve their seeding in the upcoming NCAA Tournament (they’re a No. 3 seed in ESPN’s latest bracketology).

    UofL is led by by freshmen forwards Mariya Moore (13.9 points per game, 4.7 rebounds per game, 3.7 assists per game) and Myisha Hines-Allen (11.7 ppg, 4.8 rpg) and a quartet of seniors - forwards Sara Hammond (10.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg) and Shawnta’ Dyer (8.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and guards Bria Smith (8.4 ppg, 4.3 rpg) and Jude Schimmel (7 ppg, 3.9 apg).

    Earlier this week Moore was named to both the ACC second & all-freshman teams.

    Coming into the ACC Tournament the Cards are shooting 44.6 percent on the season (while allowing their opponents to shoot only 37.7 percent) and outrebounding their opponents 42.1-34.1. Their biggest weaknesses have been free throw shooting (64.5 percent) and 3-point shooting (31.8 percent).

    “I think we are starting to show a lot more minutes of good than we are bad,” Walz said after the BC game. “Because at the beginning and midway through (the regular season), our good minutes could be really explosive and we could score 16 or 18 in about a 2-minute stretch and then we could go 4 minutes and not score. And now all the sudden we’re becoming a lot more consistent. Our good minutes are lasting a lot longer and we’re able to cut the bad minutes down, and that’s something we have to continue to do.”

    Photo courtesy University of Louisville Women’s Basketball Facebook Page

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