By Sonja Sykes

Your intrepid cub reporter shared a ride with four other Lady Cards supporters and attended the University of Louisvlle women’s basketball game against Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro Thursday night. Here’s a recap of the journey, and names have been changed to protect the innocent. Giggle, giggle. All events occur in real time, as Jack Bauer on “24” is so fond of saying.

3:15 p.m.

I meet up with the other four making the trip in the Wal-Mart parking lot. Naturally, I’m the last to arrive, but come fortified with food, beverage and gifts for all. Bonnie, Clyde, Laverne and Shirley send me to the back seat of the Mountaineer. I ask if I can use the dribble cup I find back here. OK! Off we go.

5:24 p.m.

Making our first pit stop just short of the Tennessee border. (It’s about time!) We’ve had great conversation and several glasses of wine so far and I’ve made sandwiches for the whole bunch. Clyde’s beginning to look like Elmer Fudd to me, and Laverne and I figured out that we dated the same guy at different times years ago in high school. Bob sure got around, for sure, since I was southwest Jefferson County and she was East End. More wine?

7:13 p.m.

We’re in the parking lot near the Murphy Center, where MTSU plays on campus. Free parking! The KFEC Board would faint…Been picking up WHAS clear as a bell all the way down…listening to the football pregame, And that nut Terry Meiners. His Joe B. Hall parody today had us rolling. Clyde gets praise for his excellent driving and locating the campus, and Bonnie put us all thru a scare when she couldn’t find the tickets at first. We’re cool, we’re dressed in red and we’re ready for some hoops!

7:41 p.m.

Been watching pregame warm-ups. The Cards look loose and relaxed. Several have looked up in the stands and seen the small, but growing contingent of red here. Talked to a couple that moved here several years ago from Louisville. They’re taping the football game, wanted to see Angel play…first time ever for them at a Lady Cards game. They promise to check the website out…so Hi! to Jeff and Denise!  Do I get commission, Charlie?

8:12 p.m.

Game is on 4-2 MTSU early. Very loud in here. Cards with 5 fouls already in just 4 minutes of play.  Good defense, but too many reach-ins.

8:20 p.m.

It’s 7-7 with 11:58 to go. Still tight defense game, Louisville just can’t get the offense going. Angel with 4 points so far.

8:27 p.m.

14-13 MTSU. Emily Queen, from Rose Hill Prep School in killing us.  Has 11 points so far. Candyce looks tired out there for us. She and Angel going to the bench.

8:35 p.m.

Byrd three, followed by a Monique Reid steal for a lay up!  18-17 us with five minutes to go first half.

8:45 p.m.

We went on an 8-0 run to take the lead 31-24 at the half. Dez has three 3’s. We’re going to see if we can go to the car and get a football update.

8:55 p.m.

After a quick discussion with the security guard, he let us out to check the score. Ugh. 28-0 Rutgers? Rain? Doug Ormay talking about how Dave Kragthorpe is disgusted about the game.  I bet he’s not the only one in the family mad. Think I’ll finish the wine in here (tee hee).

9:05 p.m.

Back in the Murphy Center as Candyce Bingham feeds Keisha Hines for a nice lay up. 36-26 Cards with 17:30 to go. Security guard actually felt sorry for us.

9:18 p.m.

With 13 minutes to go, we’re up comfortably 47-30 and on a 9-0 run. I wonder if the Cards have scored yet (in football)? MTSU has only made one shot from the floor so far this half. Defense rules! Angel’s got 16 and Keisha’s playing well.

9:30 p.m.

A Rutgers fan just informed us were down 49-0 at the half! That thud you just heard was me falling out of the bleachers.  We’re up 60-39 here. Wonder if we could loan the guys our 21-point lead?

9:50 p.m.

It’s over! A convincing 23-point win 67-44. Angel had 24 points, Keisha 11. Cards were very excellent in defense tonight, especially in the second half. Great crowd here and they love their Raiders, but they’ve been complimentary to us as we’re walking out. Not all folks in blue are mean…Now, the ride home and to the radio for some exciting UofL football?

1:15 p.m.

I’m home. I’m surprised people aren’t rioting in the streets after the football debacle. At least I’ll be able to go to work tomorrow and brag I saw a 23- point win. Clyde just shook his head the whole way back as we listened to the football game. At least it kept him awake.

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By Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.