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January 16, 2014

Incredible shooting spurs 91-52 win




CardinalSports.com's Howie Lindsey was sitting courtside for Louisville's dominating 91-52 win over Houston Thursday night. Here are three things you need to know from the game.

A BLOWOUT
Louisville built a 20 point lead in the first half and continued to push away throughout the game. The Cardinals opened the game hitting 11 of their first 15 shots and blew Houston's defense off the court.

Louisville's largest lead in the first half was 29 with 1:25 left before halftime. The Cardinals finished the first half hitting 11 of 15 threes and had an effective field goal percentage of 88.3 percent.

The Cardinals cooled off in the second half, but still finished the game shooting better than 50 percent from the field and from three-point range. UofL was 51.5 percent from the field, 53.5 percent from three-point range and 47.1 percent from the foul line.

Louisville built a 39 point lead with just under three minutes left and finished the game with the same margin, 91-52.

THREES APLENTY
Houston's defense was - um, lacking - but Louisville's shooting was incredible. The Cardinals didn't get close to the all-time three-point record of 22 set against Hartford in 2007, but they were on pace at halftime with 11.

Louisville hit its 12th three with 7:22 left in the game, and by that point the attempt at the record was long gone. Need a culprit for the lack of second-half threes? UofL had 11 threes when assistant sports information director Garett Wall tweeted that the record was 22. Louisville didn't hit another three for 10 minutes of game time.

Wayne Blackshear, apparently unfazed by Wall's momentum killing tweet, hit three in a row late in the second half.

UofL finished with 15 threes on 28 attempts. Coach Rick Pitino said the second half issue wasn't a matter of superstition, but rather not taking threes in the flow of the offense. He said most of the misses in the second half came off the dribble instead of players stepping into their shots.

TERRY ROZIER
With Chris Jones out of the game with a tweaked oblique (fun to say, but incredibly painful), freshman Terry Rozier got the start for Louisville and played very well.

"I think I played well," Rozier said. "I need to keep focusing on passing and running the offense and not worry about my offense."

Rozier hit 3 of his 4 shots in the first half and scored 8 points, had four assists and didn't have a turnover in 11 minutes. He finished the game with nine points, eight assists, four rebounds, two steals and just one turnover in 26 minutes.

QUICK HITS
- Former Louisville star and No. 1 MLS draft pick Andrew Farrell was in the audience for the game. He was fired up because two of his compadres at Louisville got drafted in the first round of today's MLS Super Draft.

- A record 371 student-athletes made the Athletic Director's Honor Roll and many of them were on hand to be introduced at halftime of the game. They filled the court, coming onto the court from all four entrances at the corners.

- Danrad "Chicken" Knowles is something of a celebrity among Louisville fans. Louisville students chanted "We Want Chicken" in the first half and Houston coach James Dickey put him into the game.

- After the game Rick Pitino called walk-on David Levitch "Pistol" after the game. He said he liked the way he took his man off the dribble in the second half, but said he needs to show more emotion. Pitino said "a corpse shows more emotion."

- Wayne Blackshear finished the game 8 of 10 shooting for 23 points and seven rebounds. He seemed relieved after the game, having struggled with foul trouble the last two games.



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