Finishing well is top priority

| October 20, 2011

Louisville coaches Ken Lolla and Charlie Strong have a lot to talk about at athletic staff meetings these days. The two come from different backgrounds, but have more in common than many may realize.

They both coach football, albeit one has a more accurate definition of the term.

Spend a few minutes with either coach, and it’s easy to see how both changed the attitude and culture of their respective programs when they arrived on campus.

The two coaches are also facing a similar problem right now: finishing. For Strong, it’s seeing his offense drive the length of the field, only to settle for three points (or less) in the red zone. Similarly for Lolla, it’s seeing his team create numerous scoring opportunities, only to come away empty-handed.

The soccer Cards ended last week with a 1-0 loss to nationally-ranked St. John’s. It was U of L’s fourth loss of the season and dropped them to 1-3-1 in Big East play. While it may seem as if scoring is a problem, the Cards have outscored opponents 22-9 through 13 games. Last year’s Cardinals outscored opponents 26-7 through 13 games, en route to an appearance in the NCAA Championship Game. The comparison doesn’t reflect a huge discrepancy, yet has yielded very different results thus far.

Louisville is taking high-quality, high-percentage shots. In four losses this season, they’ve outshot their opponents 57-41, with many of those shots coming from close range.

They played well enough to win against Notre Dame and arguably against St. John’s, and they completely dominated UConn; however, they lost all three.

Fortunately for Louisville, there are four regular season games left, and plenty of time to go into the Big East tournament with a winning streak. The Cards host Rutgers at Cardinal Park Saturday, Oct. 22, for Senior Day at 7 p.m.

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Category: U of L Soccer Report

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