How the Cards won: Quarter by quarter

Herald-Leader Staff ReportSeptember 2, 2012 

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Kentucky wide receiver Demarco Robinson, left, makes a catch in the first half. In on the tackle is Louisville cornerback Adrian Bushell. The University of Louisville hosted Kentucky,Sunday, Sept. 02, 2012 at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium in Louisville. Photo by Jonathan Palmer

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Breaking down Louisville's 32-14 victory over Kentucky in Sunday's season opener, quarter by quarter:

FIRST QUARTER

Summary: Kentucky's first drive gained 34 yards and the punt backed Louisville inside its own 1-yard line. The Cardinals proceeded to slice up the UK defense, going 99 yards in more than eight minutes and 15 plays for an 8-0 lead. UK quarterback Maxwell Smith was sharp (10-for-13 passing) and the Cats ended the first quarter at the U of L 22.

Thumbs up: Kentucky's no-huddle offense to start the game was a nice wrinkle.

Thumbs down: Not a good omen when the UK defense gives up 99 yards its first time on the field.

SECOND QUARTER

Summary: UK answered impressively, with Smith leading a 14-play, 75-yard drive that cut the lead to 8-7. On its second possession, U of L needed only six plays to go 85 yards and make it 15-7. Next time it had the ball U of L easily marched 93 yards and led 22-7. UK was driving when Raymond Sanders lost a fumble at the Louisville 22. U of L had 10 plays of 10 or more yards in the quarter.

Thumbs up: UK's Smith was accurate and poised.

Thumbs down: The U of L offense did anything it wanted against UK, gaining 314 yards the first half.

THIRD QUARTER

Summary: UK started the half recovering an on-side kick at its own 47, but Craig McIntosh missed a 42-yard field. Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater continued to toy with the Cats. A Cardinals field goal made it 25-7, then a failed UK fake punt set up a U of L TD for a 32-7 lead. Smith directed a 65-yard TD drive to make it 32-14.

Thumbs up: Good call from the sideline on Kentucky's on-side kick

Thumbs down: The Louisville defense began to put the heat on Smith.

FOURTH QUARTER

Summary: Louisville Coach Charlie Strong took Bridgewater out of the game, and UK had a chance to make it interesting before CoShik Williams lost a fumble at U of L 3-yard line. UK also reached the Cardinals 12-yard line but turned it over on downs. Bridgewater did not play in the final quarter.

Thumbs up: Kentucky wide receiver Daryl Collins showed some promise.

Thumbs down: UK needed to create a fan buzz before Saturday's home opener. Mission not accomplished.

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