Women struggle offensively in 57-47 loss to Cards
Published: Sunday, February 13, 2011
Updated: Sunday, February 13, 2011 22:02
The No. 19 West Virginia women's basketball team hasn't won a road game since it beat Seton Hall on Jan. 5.
At times on Sunday, a good start by the Mountaineers made it look like that streak would be coming to an end. But the Cardinals wouldn't take a loss on their home court, coming away with a 57-47 win over WVU.
The Mountaineers (20-6, 6-6 Big East Conference) have now lost five of their last six games. They drop to ninth place in the Big East following the defeat.
"We played for about 25 minutes, and we quit executing on both ends," said WVU head coach Mike Carey.
In the early part of the first half, the Cardinals (16-9, 7-4) started to give the Mountaineers fits with their full-court pressure, and forced WVU to commit three turnovers in the first five minutes of the game. But, West Virginia was able to settle back in, and after falling behind by four points, it came back to have a five-point advantage.
Louisville wouldn't go away quietly, though, as it took a 23-22 lead into halftime.
With the game tied at 25, Louisville went on a run that gave it the lead for the remainder of the game. Sparked by three Shoni Schimmel 3-pointers, the Cardinals went on a 12-2 run over the course of the next six minutes.
Even more impressive about Louisville's performance on Sunday – they were able to play so well without the services of the Big East Conference's fourth-leading scorer Monique Reid.
The Cardinals coaching staff was unsure whether Reid would play after suffering an ankle injury during the team's shootaround prior to the game on Sunday morning.
Reid did eventually enter the game with a little over eight minutes to play in the game, but was mostly a non-factor, scoring four points.
While Louisville was good on the offensive end of the floor, that was the source of many of West Virginia's problems on Sunday.
When the Mountaineers were attempting to make a run to cut the deficit down a little, they went on a dry spell from the field.
Center Asya Bussie's layup, at 11:25 to go in the game, was the last time WVU would hit a field goal until a layup by forward Madina Ali almost five minutes later.
And the struggles lasted the entire game for West Virginia, not just in small spurts. Guards Liz Repella and Sarah Miles – two of the Mountaineers' better players on offense – shot a combined 3-for-21 and just seven points, and the team shot just 8 percent from the 3-point range.
One thing West Virginia was able to improve on compared to its last few games was rebounding.
After being outrebounded in three of its previous four games, Sunday was the second-straight game in which the Mountaineers were able to grab more rebounds than their opponents, besting the Cardinals 39-29.
West Virginia was led by Ali, who scored 12 points and made eight of nine free throws.
Schimmel led the Cardinals with 17 points, including some big shots in the second half.