Asia Taylor savoring her senior season

The University of Louisville women's basketball team will honor four seniors on Monday night at the KFC Yum! Center. One of those seniors - Asia Taylor - wondered if she would make her senior night because of injuries. Cardinal Authority chatted with Taylor about Senior Night.

There was more than one time that University of Louisville women's basketball player Asia Taylor wondered if she would have a Senior Night.

Taylor's final game of her high school career she was honored in a wheel chair after breaking her leg in two places to end the season early.

And then last season, Taylor was a senior at U of L but didn't play because she was recovering from surgery on a torn labrum in her left hip.

"I didn't know," Taylor said. "I never felt like I was ready to come back last year, so I didn't know if I'd make one."

But now Senior Night is here for Taylor and she's been a major contributor this season for the Cardinals, who will face No. 1 Connecticut on Monday night at 7 o'clock.

"I'm so thankful to finally get here," Taylor said. "I don't want it to end and we have a lot of work to do, but it's going to be a special night. I'm so glad to be a part of all of this and what we have done here at Louisville."

The 6-foot-1 Taylor is averaging 11.4 points and 7.2 rebounds a game and has five double-doubles this season. She ranks second on the team in scoring and is the leading rebounder.

"Asia has fought through a lot," U of L coach Jeff Walz said. "She's playing now like the player we thought she was going to be when we recruited her out of high school."

A native of Columbus, Ohio, Taylor was called the "next Angel McCoughtry" during her senior season at Whetstone High School. She averaged 29.3 points during that season but suffered the broken leg late in the season.

Walz said it "took her a while" to overcome the injury but she was a steady contributor for the Cardinals during her first three seasons. She started 10 games as a freshman and started 48 of 94 in the first three years of her career.

Taylor averaged 4.6 points and 3.6 rebounds as a key role player for the Cardinals.

"I started games and I was a contributor," Taylor said. "But I wanted to be a key player for this team, I wanted to do more and I think I have this season. It's been a lot of fun."

As a senior, Taylor came back healthy and has been an elite performer. She not only ranks second on the team in scoring and first in rebounding but leads the teams in steals (48) and is second in blocked shots (21).

"It has been great," she said. "Everybody said, 'Asia can be this' or that and I think I've done some of that now. Coach Walz always says play to the end and I think I've done that.

"I know it's going to be an emotional night."