LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Two weeks of struggle had begun to raise questions about Louisville's ability to contend in the Big East.
And though some concerns remain to be addressed over the second half of their league schedule, the No. 12 Cardinals reclaimed some of their swagger with Sunday's 70-51 rout of No. 25 Marquette.
Russ Smith scored 18 and Peyton Siva 14, and Louisville shot 52 percent to run away from Marquette. The Cardinals' reserves helped out by outscoring the Golden Eagles' 19-10.
That contribution helped Louisville (18-4, 6-3) to its most decisive victory since it started 4-0 in the league while winning by an average of 18.5 points. That dominance was forgotten in a three-game losing streak and a close win over Pittsburgh, which made the Cardinals feel even better about getting it back.
"The guards got back and got on the glass. I think we matched their physicality," said Siva, who made 6 of 9 shots, including a 3-pointer, to break out of a 7-for-31 four-game slump. He also had seven assists.
"Coach told us they were going to come in here and be physical with us," Siva said. "I think we did a better job after five minutes of matching their intensity."
The Cardinals finished 27-of-52 from the field after a 1-for-8 start while holding the Golden Eagles (15-5, 6-2) to 36 percent shooting (19-of-53). They also outrebounded Marquette 38-26.
"I think we really just locked in and keyed on every play from the scouting report," Louisville forward Chane Behanan said. "Coach stressed the whole week in practice that Marquette was a great smack-down team and they got maybe just two or three against us. I'm thrilled."
NO. 23 MINNESOTA 62, IOWA 59: Austin Hollins hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 11.6 seconds left, and the host Gophers (17-5, 5-4 Big Ten) survived a rough second half.
USF women roll
PITTSBURGH — Twins Andrea and Andrell Smith scored 15 each and all five starters finished in double figures as USF cruised past Pittsburgh 78-60. Freshman Alisia Jenkins added 11 points and 11 rebounds for the Bulls (15-6, 4-4 Big East) in their third straight win over the Panthers (9-12, 0-8). The Bulls outrebounded Pitt 48-39.
NO. 20 FSU 83, CLEMSON 61: Natasha Howard had 19 points and 11 rebounds, and every starter reached double figures for the host Seminoles (18-4, 8-3 ACC). Howard became the 28th Florida State player to surpass 1,000 points for her career.
UF 87, ALABAMA 54: Freshman Christin Mercer had career highs of 18 points and 11 rebounds for the host Gators (14-9, 3-6 SEC), who shot a season-best 58.3 percent (35-of-60) and had a 51-33 rebounding advantage.
NO. 4 STANFORD 65, OREGON ST. 45: Chiney Ogwumike had a career-high 32 points and added 18 rebounds to lead the visiting Cardinal (20-2, 9-1 Pac-12).
NO. 5 DUKE 84, NO. 11 UNC 63: Chloe Wells scored a career-high 18 for the visiting Blue Devils (20-1, 10-0 ACC), who jumped on the Tar Heels (20-3, 8-2) with an early 29-3 run and won their fifth straight in the series. UNC coach Sylvia Hatchell was denied her 900th victory.
NO. 6 CAL 72, OREGON 45: Layshia Clarendon scored 15 to lead the visiting Golden Bears (19-2, 9-1 Pac-12), who scored 44 in the paint.
NO. 13 GEORGIA 75, NO. 8 KENTUCKY 71: Khaalidah Miller scored a career-high 25 for the Bulldogs (19-3, 7-2 SEC), who snapped a 33-game home winning streak by the Wildcats (19-3, 7-2).
MISSOURI 80, NO. 9 TENN. 63: Morgan Eye scored 26 for the host Tigers, who beat a ranked team for the first time in almost two years and stopped a 12-game SEC winning streak by the Vols (17-5, 8-1).
NO. 10 MARYLAND 85, BC 62: Tianna Hawkins scored 26 as the Terrapins (18-3, 9-1 ACC) improved to 12-0 at home.
NO. 15 S.C. 59, AUBURN 51: Khadijah Sessions had a career-high 19 points off the bench as the host Gamecocks (19-3, 7-2 SEC) won their fifth straight game.
NO. 17 DAYTON 72, RICHMOND 64: Olivia Applewhite came off the bench to score 18 and add 11 rebounds for the visiting Flyers (19-1, 7-0 Atlantic 10).
NO. 18 UCLA 70, UTAH 42: Alyssia Brewer scored 16 for the host Bruins (17-4, 8-2 Pac-12), who forced 18 turnovers and won their fourth straight game.
W. VA. 82, NO. 21 OKLA. 63: Christal Caldwell scored 24 for the host Mountaineers, who held the Sooners (16-5, 6-3 Big 12), a 39.5 percent 3-point shooting team, to 5-of-22 (22.7).
NO. 22 COLORADO 65, USC 49: Arielle Roberson scored 16 for the visiting Buffaloes (16-5, 5-5 Pac-12), who scored the first eight of the second half to take the lead for good.
N'WESTERN 67, NO. 24 IOWA 65: Karly Roser's layup at the buzzer lifted the visiting Wildcats. The Hawkeyes (16-7, 5-4 Big Ten) had tied it on Melissa Dixon's basket with 3 seconds left.
NO. 25 DELAWARE 79, HOFSTRA 63: Elena Delle Donne scored 35 as the host Blue Hens (18-3, 9-0 CAA) won their 13th straight game.