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Stifling defense by No. 4 Louisville shuts down Virginia

The No. 4 Louisville Cardinals stifled the Virginia Cavaliers on Thursday, keeping them to a season-low 39 points and maintaining a share of the ACC regular-season title.

NCAA Womens Basketball: Louisville at Syracuse Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Louisville, KY -- The No. 4 Louisville Cardinals used its defense to get past the Virginia Cavaliers in a 51-39 decision.

Louisville and Virginia battled through much of the first quarter. With 3:14 remaining in the first frame, the Cardinals and the Cavaliers were tied at 11. But, a pair of free throw shots from Bianca Dunham pushed Louisville ahead, 13 - 11. The Cavaliers would not come closer than four points the remainder of the match.

”I thought we defended extremely well, except for fouling there towards the end and giving up offensive rebounds,” Louisville coach Jeff Walz said. “I thought we contested shots, we made it difficult for them to score.”

The Cardinals held Virginia to a crushing 27% from the field, 10% from beyond the arc. The Cavaliers 39 points was the lowest score they have had all season. Likewise, the 51 points for the Cardinals was its lowest in a victory.

In the win, Louisville converted 21 Virginia turnovers into 27 points. The Cardinals grabbed 20 of its 51 in the paint, however, Louisville struggled to score in transition posting only four fast break points.

The Cardinals struggled shooting the ball finishing the match going 19 - of - 50 from the field. Luckily, Louisville’s defense was keeping Virginia out of contention.

Despite falling behind to the Cardinals early, Virginia managed to control the board, out rebounding Louisville, 37 - 33.

For the 20th time this season, junior guard Asia Durr led the Cardinals in scoring with 13 points. Durr also recorded a season-high seven boards. Jazmine Jones, for 15th time this season, also grabbed double-figures, picking up 10 points on 4 - of - 7 shooting.

The Cavaliers were led by Lauren Moses’ 10 points. Jocelyn Willoughby led all players on the glass with 11 rebounds.

The Cardinals are still in contention to earn at least a piece of the ACC Regular Season title. But, first the Cardinals must face the Pitt Panthers on Sunday at 2 PM EST.

The Cavaliers will finish the season on the road at Wake Forest.