No. 17 Louisville Flies by Rutgers in Big East Semifinals

Louisville continued its winning ways on Thursday. Kaylin Morissette scored seven goals, Nikki Boltja added five, and the Cardinals defeated Rutgers 17-6 in the Big East Tournament semifinal in Washington, D.C.

Morissette's seven goals tied the Big East Tournament single-game record, and her six goals in the first half broke a 2007 tournament record for scores in a half. The sophomore also broke the tournament's single-game record for draw controls by five, as she finished with 12.

Boltja, in addition to her goal scoring, tied the conference tournament record with four assists and boosted her point total to a single-season best 89. With her free-position goal late in the second half, the senior became the school's career leader in free-position goals with 49.

Top-seed Louisville, which advances to Saturday's Big East Tournament final for the first time in school history against either Georgetown or Connecticut, recorded its 10th-consecutive victory and first postseason win. Saturday's winner receives an automatic bid to the 26-team NCAA Tournament.

The Cardinals (14-3) wasted little time in jumping to a lead, scoring a pair of goals in nearly the first five minutes of play. Jamie Redding found the back of the net at the 29:13 mark on a pass from Boltja, and then Carissa Corbett notched her sixth goal of the season on Boltja's second assist of the game.

Rutgers (9-9) registered its first of two goals in the half at the 22:32 mark, before Morissette went on a run that outpaced the Scarlet Knights.

After scoring her first goal in the 22nd minute on an assist from Colleen O'Malley, Morissette took a pass from Redding and slotted it past Rutgers' goalkeeper for her second score. Twenty-three seconds later, Morissette achieved her seventh hat trick of the season, recording her third goal on an assist from Brust.

Boltja scored the game's first unassisted goal to cap the Cardinals' 4-0 run, giving them a 6-1 advantage.

After Rutgers' Megan Clements tallied the Scarlet Knights' second goal, Louisville compiled eight unanswered goals.

The Cardinals' run was started by Boltja's second unassisted goal and continued with two more scores from Morissette. Inside the eight-minute mark, Boltja, Brust, Morissette, and Kopecka pushed Louisville's lead to 13-2 at the half, with Kopecka's goal coming on Hannah Koloski's first career assist.

Morissette finished one of the best single-half performances in tournament history. Her six goals came on six shots, and she also totaled nine draw controls and one ground ball.

The second period featured nearly half the scoring, with Louisville and Rutgers each tallying four goals apiece.

Boltja, who had two goals in the half, improved her season total to 66 to put her at No. 2 on the school's single-season list.

Louisville also received stellar play from its two goalkeepers in the victory. Ashley Peacock improved to 4-0 after making three saves and allowing just five goals in 54 minutes of play. Ashley Herbst came in for nearly six minutes of relief and totaled three saves with only one goal allowed.

In the last three meetings against Rutgers, the Cardinals have outscored the Scarlet Knights 49-13.

The Big East Tournament final on May 2 will be televised on Fox Sports 2 at 2:30 p.m.

2014-05-01



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