Still longing for first win, Louisville faces Cincinnati
The Cincinnati Bearcats and the winless Louisville Cardinals will look to leave the Maui Invitational on a positive note when they meet in the seventh-place game on Wednesday in Lahaina, Hawaii.
The Bearcats (3-3) and Cardinals (0-5) each dropped their first two games, with Cincinnati following a 101-93 loss to No. 14 Arizona on Monday with an 81-53 setback to Ohio State on Tuesday.
Louisville, which is off to its worst start since opening the 1940-41 season 0-11, has had an even rougher time.
The Cardinals were blown out by No. 9 Arkansas 80-54 in their opener before getting pummeled 70-38 by No. 21 Texas Tech on Tuesday. Louisville’s 38 points were its fewest since a 62-34 loss to Xavier on Jan. 7, 1948.
Against the Red Raiders, El Ellis and Jae’Lyn Withers each had seven points, but the Cardinals shot 22.4 percent from the field and committed 18 turnovers that Texas Tech converted into 18 points.
Texas Tech had a 25-0 run to turn a 20-13 lead with 4:22 left in the first half into a 45-13 advantage with 14:45 left in the game.
“(Arkansas and Texas Tech) imposed their will on us consistently throughout the whole game and we turned the ball over and we shot a bad percentage because of them,” Louisville first-year coach Kenny Payne said.
“I’m evaluating and I’m learning who I can trust and who I can’t trust. I need a group of guys that will fight.”
Cincinnati took a 16-15 lead on Dan Skillings Jr.’s layup with 11:53 left in the first half before Ohio State countered with a 23-11 run to 38-27 lead at the half.
The Buckeyes outscored Cincinnati 43-26 in the second and converted the Bearcats’ 14 turnovers into 24 points.
Viktor Lakhin, with 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting, was the lone Bearcat to score in double figures.
“They kicked our tails in the second half, so we’re disappointed,” Cincinnati coach Wes Miller said. “We’re frustrated. But give Ohio State credit. They were the more physical team tonight on both sides of the ball. They took it to us there, especially in the second half.”
–Field Level Media