Freshman Myisha Hines-Allen had started 18 games for the University of Louisville this season, but Sunday night against visiting Miami was not one of them. In an attempt to create a spark in the McDonald's All-American, head coach Jeff Walz removed her from the starting lineup.
Hines-Allen responded with a career-high 23 points, while also grabbing 8 rebounds, to lead the Cardinals to a 68-55 win over visiting Hurricanes in an important ACC contest.
"He said for me, I had to sit and watch the game because when I start off, I’m just playing at one speed and I have to go harder," she explained.
Four minutes had passed and her team was trailing 11-2 before she was called off the bench by Walz. She immediately went to work and scored eight of the team's next ten points. She finished 10 of 11 from the floor. That's the most field goals by a freshman since Shoni Schimmel hit 12 on March 22, 2011, against Xavier.
"I think she got pissed off, if you want the truth," said Walz. "I think she was really mad that she wasn’t starting, which was part of why I did it. I wanted to see what kind of fight she had."
Redshirt senior Shawnta' Dyer picked up the start and had a near double-double with 10 points and 8 rebounds. Bria Smith added 13 points and six assists, while Mariya Moore scored 13 points with 7 assists.
Fourth-ranked Louisville improved to 18-2 on the season and moved into a three-way tie with No.5 Notre Dame and No.17 Florida State atop the ACC standings at 6-1 in league play.
"This was a big one, and I know I’ve said it and some of you don’t believe me, going into that Virginia game, I was concerned we could lose five straight, because everybody we’re playing, it’s flipping the coin either way," he said. "The Virginia game could go either way and we pulled that out; we go down to Florida State, it could have gone either way - we lose. Here, we were down four at half, figure out a way to get things done. Syracuse is going to be the same way on Thursday. So any win we can get. I’ll take it. I’m extremely pleased."
Louisville welcomes Syracuse to the KFC Yum! Center on Thursday for a 7:00 pm tip-off.
Shawnta' Dyer, Bria Smith, Myisha Hines-Allen
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