(2) Louisville 73

(19-2, 9-1 C-USA)

(11) Marquette 70

(18-4, 9-2 C-USA)

    3:30 PM ET, February 15, 2003

    BMO Harris Bradley Center, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    1 2 T
    #2LOU 35 3873
    #11MARQ 36 3470

    Gaines lifts Cardinals before record crowd at Marquette

    MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Reece Gaines didn't fall for the trap.

    Instead of going for a game-winning drive, he stopped short and hit a 3-pointer with 6 seconds left to put No. 2 Louisville back on the winning track with a 73-70 victory over No. 11 Marquette on Saturday.

    "I knew that was the best shot I was going to get because I couldn't move to the basket,'' Gaines said. "They were going to trap me, and (force me) to pass it to somebody else.''

    Louisville (19-2, 9-1 Conference USA) rebounded from a 59-58 loss at Saint Louis on Wednesday that ended its 17-game winning streak.

    In the process, the Cardinals snapped Marquette's 28-game home winning streak.

    "We were on edge because of that loss (at Saint Louis), and we played a great game,'' Louisville coach Rick Pitino said. "If we hadn't lost that game, I don't know if we'd have been able to win here today. We beat a fabulous team, one of the best in the country.''

    The Bradley Center crowd of 18,850 was the largest ever to see a college basketball game in Wisconsin. The last time Marquette (18-4, 9-2) lost at home was 77-74 in triple overtime on Feb. 24, 2001 -- to Louisville.

    This one wasn't easy, either.

    With the Cardinals leading 70-67, Marquette point guard Travis Diener came off a screen and hit a 3-pointer with 15.3 seconds to go.

    Gaines came back and hit the game-winner from above the key, and Diener was short on a final try at the buzzer.

    "We just didn't cover it very well,'' Marquette coach Tom Crean said of Gaines' final shot. "He's an excellent player, and he really stepped up. He made some tough plays.''

    Gaines finished with 20 points, including 4-of-6 from 3-point range, and Taquan Dean added 18 points for the Cardinals.

    Dwyane Wade led Marquette with 15 points, while Robert Jackson had 14 and Diener 13.

    Louisville shot 41.3 percent from the field and Marquette 35 percent.

    Marquette led 36-35 at halftime and took the lead on a layup by Jackson, but Louisville went ahead 39-38 on a layup by Marvin Stone.

    A basket by Dean put the Cardinals up 66-63 with 2:45 left, and Louisville led 68-65 on a free throw by Gaines with 1:20 remaining.

    But Wade made two free throws to make it 68-67 with 1:01 left, and Dean answered with two free throws to make it 70-67 with 29.6 seconds to go before Diener tied it.

    Pitino said his team used a patient offense down the stretch, and it paid off.

    "We stayed with our sets until we got good shots, and we played great defense,'' he said. "We had to come up with big plays down the stretch and we made them.''

    Crean said the game "certainly lived up to its billing.''

    As for the home winning streak, he said, "we have to understand we had a good run here.

    "It's the first time all but two of our players have lost here. They're young and resilient, and I'm sure they'll bounce back.''

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    2002-03 Season

    » Feb 15, 2003 LOU 73, @MARQ 70Recap
    Feb 27, 2003 MARQ 78, @LOU 73Recap