Louisville is making its fifth trip to the Sweet Sixteen after the Cardinals crushed Iowa Tuesday night, 83-53.
Shoni Schimmel had a strong night, posting 26 points, seven assists and five steals. She also liked her team’s defensive effort. “To not let a good team go out there and score, we did a good job,” Schimmel told ESPN in a post-game interview.
The Cardinals had a 17-point lead at the end of the first half and continued to make strong defensive plays.
"Defensively, that's one of the best performances we've had all season," Louisville Coach Jeff Walz said. "Our whole game plan was to try to keep the ball out of [Samantha] Logic's hands as much as we possibly could. … I thought she shot it well, but I thought we made her work the entire night."
Logic had nine turnovers, and ended the night with 12 points. "We knew they were going to have pressure,” Logic told ESPN. “We knew they were going to have some traps, different defenses. It wasn't anything we weren't expecting. We just really didn't execute.”
In the first half, the Cardinals hit 8 of their first 10 field goals, and Schimmel followed Theairra Taylor’s miss of a breakaway layup with a jump shot that gave Louisville a 23-12 lead. The Hawkeyes were unable to take advantage of Louisville’s 12 fouls and nine turnovers in the first half, and the Cardinals ended the half with a 40-23 lead.
In the second half, Shoni’s confidence appeared to be high as she quickly hit a three and then a layup to give Louisville a 52-25 lead. “They gave us the pull-up jumpers, and…I just figured, ‘Why not’?” Schimmel said after the game.
Shoni’s younger sister Jude also had a strong game, with 10 points.
Louisville will play LSU, a team that they beat back in November, on Sunday.
“One win at a time,” Shoni told ESPN.