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Louisville's offense erupts in rout of Louisiana

Dec 8, 2013 - 12:49 AM Louisville, KY ( - Montrezl Harrell scored 20 points and Chris Jones added 19, leading seventh-ranked Louisville to a 113-74 rout of Louisiana at the KFC Yum! Center.

Russ Smith chipped in 16 points and Wayne Blackshear netted 15 for Louisville (8-1), which has won three straight since a 93-84 loss to North Carolina on Nov. 24. The Cardinals, who had scored at least 90 points three times previously this season, last reached 100 in a 104-101 five-overtime loss to Notre Dame last February.

Louisville set a KFC Yum! Center scoring mark and posted its highest scoring output since a 114-82 thumping of Western Kentucky on Dec. 22, 2010. The Cardinals shot 61.3 percent overall, dominating inside thanks to a 9-for-10 effort from Harrell, who also had a game-high eight rebounds.

Louisville coach Rick Pitino, who has been down on his team's defense, said the only way the Cardinals can win is to score a lot of points.

"I think we're a very good offensive basketball team, but let's not get carried away," said Pitino. "I think this team just tried to stay out of foul trouble with the pick-and-rolls and just gave us layups."

Shawn Long scored 25 points for Louisiana (6-3), which had won four in a row since an 87-68 loss to nationally ranked Baylor.

Louisiana coach Bob Marlin said playing the reigning national champions was a "great opportunity" for his team.

"We have been playing with some confidence," he said. "We came in and I thought we showed it in the first half. We shot the ball well. The second half, we just didn't defend."

Louisville raced out to a 16-5 advantage just five minutes into the contest and led 23-12 after a Chane Behanan three-point play, but Louisiana rallied with a 9-2 run and pulled within 25-21 on a three by Steven Wronkoski.

The Ragin' Cajuns came all the way back and took their first lead at 34-32 on a layup by Long with just under seven minutes left in the half, but the Cardinals used an 11-0 run shortly afterward to again assume control.

Harrell's dunk ignited the burst and tied the game at 41-41 before Jones scored the last five to make it 50-41. Two free throws by Luke Hancock in the final minute sent Louisville to the break with a 54-47 lead.

The Cardinals opened the second half with the first six points to extend the margin to 13 and the Cajuns got only as close as eight from there. After Long's dunk made it 62-54, Louisville scored the next 13 points to put it away.

A pair of Smith free throws made it a 30-point game, 94-64, with just under nine minutes remaining, and a dunk by Harrell with 7:38 to play allowed the Cardinals to reach the century mark.

Game Notes

The Cardinals held a 60-34 advantage in the paint ... Louisville connected on only 4-of-18 from beyond the arc, but made 33-of-40 from the foul line ... The Cardinals owned a 41-29 edge on the boards ... Kasey Shepherd scored 18 points for Louisiana, while Wronkoski finished with 10 and Elfrid Payton chipped in 12 points with 10 assists in defeat ... Louisville committed just eight turnovers and scored 32 points off 17 Louisiana miscues ... The previous scoring record at the KFC Yum! Center was set in a 106-65 victory over Chattanooga on Nov. 22, 2010 ... Louisville improved to 9-0 all-time against Louisiana.