Louisville Cardinals Use Pressure Defense to Dominate Seton Hall

By Jon Hancock
Wayne Blackshear Louisville
Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

The Seton Hall Pirates didn’t have much of a chance beating the No.10 Louisville Cardinals coming into the game, but thought they might have a chance if they could shoot well from the outside.

But, it is hard to score when the opposing defense won’t let you get the ball in-bounds or over the half-court line.

Louisville completely smothered the Pirates the entire game, forcing 19 turnovers, which led to a easy 79-61 win. Twelve of the turnovers Seton Hall gave up were steals, and sophomore guard Kevin Ware came off the bench to lead the Cardinals in steals with four.

Gorgui Dieng led Louisville in scoring with 23, which is his new career-high. He also added eight rebounds, three blocks, and two steals. Coach Rick Pitino mentioned Friday that he is expecting Dieng to leave for the NBA after this season, if he continues to play like he did today, that will definitely be the case.

Louisville has been struggling with their free throws the past couple of games, which is a scary issue heading into the NCAA tournament. Louisville went 20-26 from line on Saturday, while guard Russ Smith went 10-10. Smith ended up with 19 points and added five assists.

Smith is a scorer, but seems to be listening to coach Pitino on his need to find the open man and not force his shot. This new part of his game will be a key to Louisville’s success moving forward. Seton Hall’s center Eugene Teague played well in a losing effort. He had 16 points, eight rebounds and four assists against Louisville’s talented front-court.

Louisville will take on DePaul Wednesday night on the road, while Seton Hall has a quick turnaround game against Villanova Monday night.

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