--By Mike Gilpatrick
--Photo by Jared Anderson
All good things must close; whether that be a season, career, or title run.
The Louisville women’s basketball team found their end on Sunday, after losing to the Connecticut Huskies in the Albany regional final, 80-73. The Louisville faithful also saw three seniors exit the court in Louisville uniforms one final time.
Arica Carter, Sam Fuehring, and Asia Durr wrapped up their Louisville careers. Fuehring, who was named to the Citizen Naismith Trophy Award Watchlist and Lisa Leslie award watchlist; dropped 15 points, and tallied seven rebounds during the game. Carter, third on the team in assists, had two more, in addition to seven points and two boards.
Durr, one of the greatest women’s basketball players to don the Red and Black; put up 21 points, nine rebounds, and five assists, despite not scoring in the first period.
Louisville had a brief lead in the first period. The Cardinals went on an 9-0 run from around the four-minute mark until three minutes were left. It gave them a four-point lead.
It was the only lead of the game for Louisville. The Huskies were tougher than when the Cardinals defeated them 78-69 on January 31st in Louisville. At multiple points, Connecticut led by double-digits. Louisville kept clawing back.
In the third period, Christyn Williams layed a ball up, and gave UConn their fourth 10-point lead. Bionca Dunham kicked off a 6-0 run to end the period.
Then, with less than 90 seconds left, Katie Lou Samuelson gave Geno Auriemma an 11-point lead. Asia Durr led the Cardinals with six points during a 10-1 run, lasting until just 30 seconds were left. It cut Connecticut’s lead to two points.
Louisville was backed into a corner, and was forced to send the Huskies to the line. 28 seconds later, the game ended.
The final result may have been a loss, but the Cardinals never stopped fighting. While they were the No. 1 seed, the game felt like a road game: Albany is just two-hours away from UConn, and Louisville is 12. The crowd was overwhelmingly UConn-heavy. The 10-points could have easily become 20.
Instead of that, Louisville played a tough game, scored 18-points on 13 forced turnovers, and put up 12 points from the bench.
2018-19 was a good season for the Cardinals. 2019-20 will be here before we know it.