Cardinals set sights on Vikings

Nov 26, 2014 - 4:29 PM Louisville, KY ( - The sixth-ranked Louisville Cardinals will play their second game in three days, as they play host to the Cleveland State Vikings in the final game of the Global Sports Showcase.

Rick Pitino's Cardinals thoroughly whipped Savannah State on Monday in an 87-26 rout. The win was the fourth straight for Louisville, which is in the midst of a six-game homestand that will continue through Dec. 5 against FIU.

Gary Water's Vikings have won both of their home games this season, but sit at 2-2 with a pair of road losses. One of those setbacks came on the road at Savannah State on Saturday, an 87-83 overtime loss.

Louisville has won all four previous meetings with Cleveland State, the last of which was a 95-80 decision in 1990 at Freedom Hall.

Cleveland State had a strong offensive showing against Savannah State, shooting .500 from the floor and 23-of-29 from the free-throw line, but could not get over the hump and fell in overtime. The loss spoiled a terrific performance by Trey Lewis, who erupted for a team-high 27 points. Marlin Mason poured in 16 points, while Andre Yates (15 pts) and Anton Grady (13 pts) were heard from as well. The Vikings were guilty of 20 turnovers in the game and were outrebounded slightly (28-27).

Lewis is shooting a modest .405 from the floor, but still tops the team in scoring at 16.0 ppg. He also finds time to lead the team in assists (4.0 apg) and in steals (2.2 spg). Grady (13.8 ppg), Mason (13.5 ppg) and Yates (10.3 ppg) all contribute double-digit averages for a CSU team that is netting 75.2 ppg.

The Cardinals jumped all over Savannah State on Monday and actually took an eye-popping 41-7 lead into halftime, as the Tigers went an ugly 2-of-26 from the floor in the first 20 minutes. Star forward Montrezl Harrell just missed a double-double with 15 points and nine rebounds, although he played just 21 minutes. Wayne Blackshear added 13 points, while Terry Rozier and Chinasu Onuaku finished with 11 and 10 points, respectively. Louisville forced Savannah State into 26 turnovers in the game, and shot 52.5 percent from the floor overall.

Dominant play at both ends has been the norm for Louisville this season. The Cardinals are averaging 85.2 ppg and are enjoying a hefty +35.2 scoring margin. Harrell is playing like an All-American, shooting .622 from the floor and averaging 18.0 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. Rozier can fill up the basket at well at 14.8 ppg. Fellow guard Chris Jones (12.5 ppg) and Blackshear (12.0 ppg) round out the top scoring threats for the team.

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