--By Mike Gilpatrick
--Photo by Jared Anderson
Louisville went without star guard Asia Durr on Sunday. The Cardinals still obliterated Pittsburgh.
The final score was 70-42. Louisville’s defense held the Panther offense to single digits through the first two periods; while the offense maintained the level of performance as usual- the Cardinals had one stellar offensive period, and maintained for the other three.
Durr missed because of the huge Thursday matchup with women’s basketball juggernaut Connecticut. She slightly tweaked her knee during the last game, and head coach Jeff Walz did not wish to risk an injury with Durr.
Louisville’s first half put Pittsburgh away- the Cardinals especially set the tone in the first period. Pittsburgh’s Danielle Garvin made a fastbreak layup within the first minute to give the Panthers the short-lived lead, but Louisville responded with a massive 17-2 run. The Panthers only scored on free-throws. They also committed eight first-period fouls, leading to nine Louisville points from the line. In total, the Cardinals led 23-6 at the end of the first.
The Cardinals shut out the Panthers for nearly the entire second period; opening on an 16-0 run before the Panthers made a three-point basket with 3:36 before the half. Pitt hit another three with 1:20 left, the last score of the game.
Louisville led 41-12 at halftime. By this point, the game was settled. Any random five fans could have entered the game and Louisville still would have won.
Pittsburgh outscored Louisville in the third, by one point. The Panthers went nearly back and forth with Louisville, but still trailed Louisville 55-27 with one period left.
Both teams scored 15 in the fourth. Pitt led off the period with an 11-2 run, before the Cardinals went on an 11-2 run of their own. Kylee Shook scored the last basket of the game, which was a layup with 20 seconds left.
The Cardinals are now 19-1, and 7-1 in the ACC. They look to win No. 20 against No. 3 Connecticut on Thursday at 7pm. The game will be on National TV, either from ESPN or ESPN 2.