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Louisville Holds Off USF Behind Solid Offensive Display

2 down, 5 to go...

Score: Louisville 59, USF 41

Star(s):Louisville:Russ Smith 15 Pts, 6 Reb, 4 Ast. Rick Pitino 650th career win

Story: There's an art to creating offense with a team that doesn't have a standout shooter, and Louisville created a masterpiece today. Like, classy-above-the-mantle artwork. Russ Smith was all over the place in a good way, making it apparent that U of L was concentrating more on passing. Multiple players were effective on offense, including Peyton Siva, Kevin Ware, Chane Behanan and Wayne Blackshear. Siva displayed great court vision and had seven assists to prove it. Ware showed confidence in his shooting that U of L hadn't seen prior to USF; he ended up with seven points. Blackshear and Behanan showed athleticism with a number of dunks as well, both ending up with 12 points each. Blackshear's jumper is also starting to look like something fans wouldn't mind seeing more often.

The first half was solid on both ends of the court, except for the last four minutes when USF scored 10 points and cut the deficit to just eight. Prior to that, USF had just 14 points. 14 points in 16 minutes, then 10 in four minutes? U of L can't get careless with a lead like that.

But, in the second half, they didn't. After getting the lead back up to 15 points, the Cardinals ran with it, finishing USF and getting one step closer to winning out the remainder of the regular season.

Highlight(s) of the game: It's a toss-up between USF's Victor Rudd's one-handed putback dunk and Chane Behanan saving the ball from going out of bounds with a behind-the-back pass that would turn into an assist on a Russ Smith lay-up. Both were SportsCenter Top 10-worthy.