WICHITA, Kansas — The Louisville women’s basketball team is just one of four teams still standing in the 2021 NCAA Tournament.
The Cardinals beat Michigan 62-50 on Monday for their first trip to the Final Four since 2018. Wichita-area No. 1 seed Louisville (29-4) will face No. 1 seed South Carolina. tournament series No. 1.
The Gamecocks (33-2) made the Final Four after beating Creighton in the Greensboro Elite Eight 80-50.
NCAA Tournament:Louisville’s Kianna Smith has promised her mother a Final Four. Now they heading to Minneapolis
On Friday, South Carolina leads the all-time series 17-4 against Louisville.
The winner will face either UConn or Stanford in the NCAA Women’s National Basketball Championship game on Sunday night.
Follow live updates below.
Final: South Carolina 72, Louisville 59
Louisville kept fighting, but in the end, South Carolina was too much. In what was Emily Engstler’s last collegiate game, she contributed 18 points, 9 rebounds, 4 steals and 1 block.
Olivia Cochran and Kianna Smith had 14 points each. Hailey Van Lith had 9 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals.
The Cardinals shot more than 44 percent from the floor but only made one 3-pointer.
Aliyah Boston, the player of the year, had a monster game for South Carolina with 23 points, 18 rebounds, 4 assists and one block.
2:08 4Q: South Carolina 68, Louisville 56
Time is running out for the cardinals. Led 12 less than 3 minutes from the end, Louisville will have to start its comeback now.
3:42 4Q: Emily Engstler fouls
Emily Engstler finishes with 18 points, 9 rebounds and 4 steals. If Louisville doesn’t come back from its 65-54 deficit, its collegiate career will be over.
5:30 4Q: South Carolina 63, Louisville 54
With the game nearly over, neither Louisville bench player scored. The Cards have still not made 3 points (0-4).
End of 3rd quarter: South Carolina 57, Louisville 48
With three quarters completed, Louisville trails by 9 points. While Emily Engstler was excellent for the Cards with 16 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals, she now has 4 fouls.
Kianna Smith added 14 points while Olivia Cochran added 10 points.
3:27 3Q: South Carolina 53, Louisville 40
Aliyah Boston leads South Carolina with 12 points and 11 rebounds. For the Cards, Emily Engstler has 14 points and 8 rebounds, but has committed 3 fouls.
Louisville is yet to make a 3-point shot in the game.
4:34 3Q: South Carolina 51, Louisville 38
South Carolina has its biggest lead of the game after a strong start to the second half.
Halftime: South Carolina 34, Louisville 28
After South Carolina started the game with a dominating performance, Louisville fought back. Emily Engstler finished the half with 10 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals.
Kianna Smith and Olivia Cochran each have 8 points. Destanni Henderson (11)
Louisville improved its field goal percentage to 44% after a rocky start. Although the Cards have not yet made 3 points (0-2) or free throws (0-3).
4:17 2Q: South Carolina 24, Louisville 24
Here come the cardinals! Louisville scored 12 straight points to take the lead, but South Carolina fought back. Emily Engstler has 10 points and 7 rebounds. Kianna Smith contributed 8 points.
End of 1Q: South Carolina 17, Louisville 10
A quarter has been completed in this Final Four game. Louisville has committed 5 turnovers while South Carolina has 2.
Emily Engstler leads the Cards with 4 points, 5 rebounds and a block. Hailey Van Lith has 2 interceptions and 3 turnovers.
“I think we got our composure back,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said between quarters. “We have to keep doing a good job of boxing and rebounding.”
1:13 1Q: South Carolina 15, Louisville 10
Emily Engstler leads Louisville with 4 points. Shooting was a problem for the Cards, as they converted 31% of their shots.
5:29 1Q: South Carolina 11, Louisville 2
South Carolina’s size proved to be a difference maker early on. Olivia Cochran has Louisville’s only points.
Lineups are set for Louisville vs. South Carolina
The Cardinals will start a familiar formation.
Louisville vs South Carolina is almost here
Are you ready? The Final Four game is fast approaching.
Here’s how to watch the Final Four Louisville vs. South Carolina
When: 7 p.m. ET Friday
Or: Target center in Minneapolis
Flow: Qualified subscribers can watch the game on Watch ESPN and the ESPN app.
How a dedicated Jeff Walz built a mighty Louisville
The plane from Louisville returned to town around 5 a.m. after their Elite Eight win over Michigan.
As the players, band and cheerleaders disembarked, a man put luggage on a cart and wheeled it through the lobby of the private aircraft hangar and to the cars. He was grinning from ear to ear despite the fact that it was early and he didn’t sleep at all that night.
That man was Louisville coach Jeff Walz.
Hours after sending Louisville to its fourth Final Four in 15 years at its helm, the winningest coach in program history was unloading his own baggage. He wouldn’t dare let anyone else do it. He’s the same person who always mows his own lawn and does most of the maintenance in his house.
– Learn more about Cameron Teague Robinson
By blessing the addition of Emily Engstler, Mykasa Robinson enabled Louisville’s Final Four
MINNEAPOLIS — Jeff Walz has told the story more than once, but it bears repeating. And, perhaps, joyful.
Before the University of Louisville women’s basketball coach pulled Emily Engstler from the transfer gate last spring, he pitched the idea to Mykasa Robinson. He knew the addition of Engstler would cost Robinson playing time, and he was sensitive to the reduction in his role.
“Mykasa, without hesitation, said to me, ‘Coach, I’m tired of keeping her for three years…If we can get her, let’s go,'” Walz said.
– Learn more about Tim Sullivan here
What to know about Final Four opponent: No. 1 South Carolina
The Louisville women’s basketball team returns to the Final Four.
For the first time since 2018, when Louisville lost in overtime to Mississippi State, the Cardinals are one of the last four teams to play. The Cardinals (28-4, 16-2 ACC) clinched the trip to Minneapolis, Minnesota with a 62-50 win over third-seeded Michigan on Monday.
Final square:Louisville wife Jeff Walz won’t give in to South Carolina without a ‘fighting blow’
The Cardinals, the first seed from the Wichita area, will now prepare for No. 1 seed South Carolina in the Final Four. The Gamecocks have been the No. 1 team in the country all year and were favorites to win the national championship after losing in the 2021 Final Four to eventual champion Stanford a year ago.
– Read more about Cameron Teague Robinson here
U of L basketball, Hailey Van Lith has a fan in Donovan Mitchell
Donovan Mitchell had seen enough.
The Utah Jazz star had watched Hailey Van Lith score for Louisville’s women’s basketball team in their NCAA tournament, and Mitchell – once a Cardinals star on the men’s team – had something to say.
So earlier this week, he DMed Van Lith to say his story.
“I’ve never met her in person, but I wanted to tell her that I think the one thing I saw that was really inspiring was her leadership,” Mitchell told the Courier Journal on Wednesday. “You like to see that. As the leader of my team, to be able to see her take on this trait is stunning to behold. Everyone talks about his 20 points per game, but what I said to him was, “Your leadership is what I think stands out the most.”
– Learn more about Brett Dawson here