Posted: Nov 30, 2012 4:21 PM
Updated: Nov 30, 2012 4:21 PM
The 49th "Battle of the Bluegrass" is set to showcase two of the nation's top women's basketball teams when No. 9/8 Kentucky takes on No. 7/6 Louisville on Sunday, Dec. 2 in the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Ky. The game will be televised live on ESPNU at 6 p.m. ET and will be available on ESPNWatch.
The game also can be heard on the UK IMG Sports Radio Network with Neil Price calling the action. Fans can follow the UK Hoops team on Twitter at @UKHoopCats and use #UKHoops to comment on the game.
"Tough game ahead here against the University of Louisville," UK Hoops Coach Matthew Mitchell said. "They have an outstanding basketball team this season and we are looking forward to having a chance to go see how we stack up and how much progress we have made over the past couple of weeks. It ought to be a good game and tough matchup for us and we will have to work hard to earn a victory at Louisville."
Sunday marks the 49th matchup between the squads but the first meeting with both teams ranked in the top 10 nationally. The Cats lead the overall series 30-18, but trail 13-9 when playing in Louisville. UK's last win in Louisville was Jan. 20, 1999 (69-56) in Freedom Hall.
The home team has won in each of the last four meetings and the last five games have been decided by an average of 22.2 points per game. The last time this rivalry was decided by single digits was in 2006 when the Cardinals?won by eight points (83-75). UK won last year's game 74-54 in Lexington. The 20-point margin of victory marked the largest margin of victory over a top 10 opponent in program history.
"I would suspect that this is going to be a really tough game, a really competitive game and we will certainly be trying to prepare today and tomorrow for Louisville to play their best and I'm sure they are doing the same thing," Mitchell said."
The Wildcats are 5-1 overall and looking to keep their four-game winning streak alive after defeating Miami University on Wednesday (92-53).
Senior All-America candidate and Louisville, Ky., native A'dia Mathies is leading the Wildcats' charge this season. She averages a team-high 14.5 points per game and tops the team in assists (20), steals (16) and 3-pointers made (14). She has climbed to No. 7 on UK's all-time scoring list with 1,522 career points and is tied for fifth on the steals list with 267. Junior forward Samarie Walker (West Carrollton, Ohio) is the team's leading rebounder with 8.0 boards per game, while fellow junior forward DeNesha Stallworth (Richmond, Calif.) has swatted a team-best 11 blocks this season.
Louisville is 8-0 this season after a decisive 76-42 win over Eastern Kentucky on Wednesday night. The Cardinals were led by sisters Shoni Schimmel and Jude Schimmel with 12 points apiece. Monique Reid followed with 11 points and Sara Hammond pulled down a team-high seven rebounds.
Overall, Shoni Schimmel leads the Cardinals in scoring (13.3 ppg), assists (4.3), steals (2.1) and 3-point field goals made (19). Hammond follows her in the scoring column with 10.9 ppg and pulls down a team-best 8.1 rebounds per game.