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Knowles helps Louisville dominate Rutgers

Feb 23, 2011 - 5:48 AM Piscataway, NJ (Sports Network) - Preston Knowles had 14 points and eight rebounds in No. 16 Louisville's 55-37 defeat of Rutgers in Big East Conference action.

Kyle Kuric scored 11 points and grabbed seven boards for the Cardinals (21-7, 10-5 Big East), who have won three of their last four contests.

"Defense is the key, they're going to be games on the road, or in the tournament that you don't shoot well and the one constant has to be defense. You got to win at the defensive end and we did," Louisville head coach Rick Pitino said.

Gilvydas Biruta had 12 points and was the only double-digit scorer for Rutgers (13-14, 4-11), which shot a putrid 29.5 percent from the field. Dane Miller had eight rebounds but only scored three points in the Scarlet Knights' third straight loss.

Louisville sprinted out of the gates for a 20-3 lead nearing the midway point of the first half. James Beatty's trey stopped the bleeding temporarily on the next possession, but the Cards kept firing on all cylinders with back-to-back treys by Kuric and Mike Marra to stay in front 26-8.

Up 33-14 with three minutes left in the half, Rutgers scored five straight to finish out the first half down 33-19.

Neither teams were particularly on fire in the second half, which led to Louisville's easy win. Rutgers shot just 27.8 percent from the field, while the Cards dropped from a 42.9 percent showing in the first half to 26.1 percent in the second.

The Scarlet Knights did cut their deficit to nine, 39-30, with 9 1/2 minutes left on Biruta's free throws. However, the Cards scored the next five points to keep their distance the rest of the way.

"Yes, its completely discouraging...Tonight we fell down a hill," Rutgers head coach Mike Rice said. "Instead of trying to climb over and seeing the top, which we've done so many times, the climb was too hard tonight."

Game Notes

The Cardinals hold a 9-1 series lead, and have won five straight over the Scarlet Knights...Marra had nine points in the win...Louisville finished the game making 35.3 percent of its shots.

    RUTGERS: 37

    Feb 22 10:53 PM

    RUTGERS: 19

    Feb 22 9:51 PM

    RUTGERS: 0
    1st Half - 20:00

    Feb 22 9:08 PM