U of L women's basketball notebook

Monique Reid

The second round of the NCAA Women's Basketball Tournament will be held tonight in the KFC Yum Center when the No. 5 seed University of Louisville hosts No. 4 seed Purdue in an Oklahoma City bracket game. Here are a few notes from Cardinal Authority heading into the game:

REID COMES UP BIG FOR CARDS

It's been a tough end to her career for former Fern Creek High School standout Monique Reid, who has been hampered by injuries for over two years.

But Reid had a memorable game for the University of Louisville women's team on Sunday with 15 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals in a 74-49 win over Middle Tennessee State in the NCAA Tournament opener.

"I was proud of Monique," U of L coach Jeff Walz said. "Although at the end of the first half I wasn't very pleased with her. I didn't think she was going very hard. She was turning the basketball over and had some bad passes. I just told her if she wasn't going to play hard then I'm not going to play you. The second time she went back in, she started to play like the player that we know she can be."

Reid scored in double figures for the first time since Jan. 12 against Providence. It's only the ninth game she has played since the game against the Friars.

After missing all but eight games last season with a knee injury, Reid earned a medical hardship and came back for this season. She played in the first 12 games before missing her first game because of a bone bruise to her knee.

Reid played seven more games but then has been off and on since early January because of the injury. Her 23 minutes against Middle Tennessee was the only 20-plus minutes she has played since early January.

""I was very determined, there's no tomorrow," Reid said. "I don't have a sixth year. I don't want a sixth year. I was very determined and I'm not going to let my injury bring me down. I'm doing this for our fans, doing it for our fans, and doing it for my family. I'm not going out like that.

"Bring me a wheelchair and I'll go out there and play."

Reid, who said she expected to play against Purdue, now has played in 136 career games and has 1,694 career points and ranks fifth all-time in school history. She has 788 career rebounds and ranks fourth in the all-time list.

THE OTHER SCHIMMEL IMPROVING

Junior guard Shoni Schimmel is the face of the program and the two-time All-Big East Conference performer for the Cardinals.

But her sister, Jude, is also making a ton of plays. Jude Schimmel, a sophomore guard from Mission, Ore., is perhaps the teams most improved player this season.

The younger Schimmel had 11 points, five assists, five steals and four rebounds in the win over Middle Tennessee. She is averaging 5.1 points and 3.0 rebounds a game and is second on the team with 57 steals and 88 assists.

"Jude coming off the bench is just great," Shoni said. "She's doing a great job for us defense-wise and bringing the ball up the court sometimes instead of Bria. Bria even plays the three sometimes with us in there.

"We have a lot of guards that can do a lot of things and with Jude coming in, she's just more confidence in a sense that she's ready to play. So I think she's grown a lot since her freshman year and she's stepping up."

CUTTING DOWN TURNOVERS

Walz has stressed all season about cutting down turnovers and the Cardinals only had eight miscues against Middle Tennessee.

It marked just the eighth game this season the total was under 10.

"It feels great," guard Bria Smith said. "It's one of our focuses. Coach always tells us that we need to protect the ball more and just make good passes and not turn over the ball because at this point into the season, we can't do that if we want to advance. It's just a good feeling knowing that we only have that amount."

The Cardinals average 16.3 turnovers a game.

PURDUE HAS LOUISVILLE CONNECTIONS

Purdue has two connections to Louisville, including former U of L co-head coach Sara White as the school's basketball sports information director.

White grew up in Clarksville, Ind., and still has family in Southern Indiana. She spent 10 seasons with the U of L women's program.

White was an assistant coach at U of L and was co-head coach with her ex-husband – Martin Clapp – for three seasons beginning in 1997. She was also the director of basketball operations for the Cardinals.

Purdue freshman April Wilson is from Manual High School and she averages 5.3 points a game for the Boilermakers.

CHEAP TICKETS AVAILABLE

U of L is offering cheaper tickets for the game.

The ticket prices for tomorrows game are as follows: $18, adult; $10, senior/student k-12; $5 tickets behind the baskets.

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