Louisville, feeling like itself again, ready to host Detroit Mercy


The timing may be just right for Louisville on Saturday afternoon.

Coming off a 77-60 win over Navy, the Cardinals (2-1) will welcome winless Detroit Mercy (0-3) into the KFC Yum! Center for an afternoon tipoff. The Cardinals previously suffered an overtime upset loss to Furman, and they beat Southern (72-60) in their opener.

Still, acting head coach Mike Pegues believes his club wasn’t hitting on all cylinders until the Navy win.

“We beat a good Navy tonight because we reinvested in the things that matter most in our program,” he stressed. “If this team wants to be good, because it can be, that has to be a daily thing.

“When we lost to Furman, we didn’t play Louisville basketball. We did that against Navy. Energy, effort, communication, commitment, investment — what we are about, and we now have to continue with that.”

The Cardinals are led by Noah Locke, who is averaging 16 points per game, and Matt Cross, who adds 11 per contest. Locke needs 19 points to reach the 1,000-point threshold for his career.

As a team, the Cardinals have been scoring roughly 74 points per game despite shooting 43.5 percent from the field and just 29.6 percent from the 3-point line. Yet, they have been a force on the boards, grabbing over 40 per contest, led by Malik Williams (9.3)

Detroit Mercy suffered a recent 77-64 loss to Mississippi State, and they also fell to Wyoming (85-47) and Toledo (81-73).

The Titans have been plagued with a permeable defense that has ushered teams to shoot an average of 53.8 percent from the field and 39.3 percent on 3-point attempts — a scoring clip that has resulted in 81 points on average for their opponents.

They have been led offensively by the trio of Antoine Davis (17.7 ppg), Kevin McAdoo (13.0), and Madut Akec (13.0), who have accounted for almost 44 of the team’s average of 61 points per game.

Davis has 2,093 career points, the fifth-leading active scorer in the country.

“We have people who can score,” said coach Mike Davis. “We just have to tighten our defense.”

–Field Level Media

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