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Rapid Reaction: Louisville 88, St. John's 63

1/19/2011

WHAT IT MEANS: St. John's drops to 11-6 overall, and 4-3 in the Big East. Losing on the road to the No. 15 team in the country is no embarrassment. However, getting blown out on the road for the second straight time is verydisappointing.

Louisville improves to 15-3 on the season, and 4-1 in the conference.

EARLY KNOCKOUT: This game was tied at 13, but then Louisville erupted for a 21-2 run -- St. John's never recovered. The Red Storm cut a 21-point deficit to 13 at halftime, 44-31. But they were never able to get the margin any closer than that in the second half, as the Cardinals ran away with it quickly.

BOMBS AWAY: St. John's has struggled against the 3-point shot all season long -- the Red Storm were ranked No. 263 in the country in 3-point field goal defense coming in. And Louisville came in ninth in the country in 3-point makes per game (9.4). Sure enough, Louisville decimated St. John's from beyond the arc -- the Cardinals drained 13 of them, making half of their 26 attempts.

Steve Lavin and his staff have to figure out a way to get this team to defend against the 3-point shot better.

GIVE IT AWAY: St. John's also didn't handle Louisville's pressure defense well at all. The Red Storm were averaging only 11.8 turnovers per game coming in (No. 35 in the nation). Against the Cardinals, they had a season-high 25 turnovers -- positively ghastly.

SCARY MOMENT: Dwight Hardy, St. John's leading scorer on the season, came down awkwardly on an ankle in the second half, and had to be helped off the floor. But the report from the St. John's bench was that it's not a serious injury -- Hardy could have returned to the game, but with the outcome no longer in question, Lavin kept him on the bench.

WHAT'S NEXT: St. John's faces a critical game on Saturday versus Cincinnati -- a 4 p.m. tip-off at Carnesecca Arena. Louisville will play at Providence on Saturday.