The loss dropped the cold-shooting Cardinals, who shot just 36.5 percent from the floor, to 6-3 in the Big East and ended a two-game losing streak for the Wildcats. Louisville started the game slowly, falling behind by 10 on two occasions, 15-5, and, 17-7.
That's when Louisville turned up the defense and climbed back in the game. After jumping out to an early lead, Villanova missed 12 straight shots and the Cardinals got back in the game before the break, trailing by just two, 22-20, at the half.
Freshman forward Earl Clark energized Louisville in the first half. He blocked shots, grabbed rebounds, made steals and pitched in eight first half point on the way to a career-high 14 points.
Shane Clark led Villanova with 12 points and hit several key three-pointers in the second half to lead the Wildcats to victory. Senior Mike Nardi had 11 points and Curtis Sumpter pitched in 10 points.
The Cardinals next game comes Wednesday night against Georgetown at Freedom Hall.