LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The University of Louisville lacrosse team left the Yum! Practice Facility Wednesday afternoon to catch a flight to University Park, Pennsylvania.
The No. 18 Cardinals will be making their fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance this weekend. They face No. 16 James Madison in the first round on Friday night at Penn State. The winner gets the fourth seeded Nittany Lions on Sunday.
Louisville finished the season 11-7 and the team was unsure if that record would be good enough for a tournament bid.
During Sunday night’s selection show, Head coach Kellie Young was happily surprised.
“Yeah we were sweating it out. This is such a young team, we have already overachieved what I thought we were going to accomplish. I'm so proud of them,” said Young.
“It was the most stressed I've been, most anxiety I've had in my coaching career but when we got that bid it was also one of the most proud moments I've had.”
Her players, however, felt more confident.
“I thought we were in just because we've been on an incline the whole year and right now we're at our peak,” said ACC Defensive Player of the Year and U of L Goal Keeper Brittany Read. “We're hitting our peak where as other teams are starting to decline. So, it wouldn't have made sense for us not to have gotten in in my opinion.”
“Our team has worked so hard this year and I think we're very deserving of it and I know that the pool this year was very competitive so it just means the world that I get to play a few more games or I get the opportunity to,” said senior attacker Hannah Koloski.
Friday’s opponent will be a familiar foe. Young was the head coach of the Dukes lacrosse team for four years prior to taking over at Louisville.
“I guess it's been so long that this (Louisville) is the place I bleed you know, “ said Young. “It's not as emotional as I think it would have been in the first or second year out. It's exciting! Shelley’s (Klaes-Bawcombe) been there since I left so we've both sort of established ourselves in the program but it's going to be a good battle.”
“They're as physical and as talented as they've ever been and we're going to bring our best game to them.”
Friday’s game is set for 6:00 pm at the Penn State Lacrosse Field.
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