Valparaiso committed 21 turnovers which led to 24 Central Michigan points on Thursday evening as the Crusaders fell to the Chippewas 62-45 at the Athletics-Recreation Center.
Central Michigan (7-4) went on a 12-1 run to end the first half and an 18-2 run over 10 minutes in the second half to break the game open.
The first half was close until the final five minutes when Valpo managed just one free throw to close the half, trailing 34-24 going into the locker room. Candace Wilson and Stacey Verhoff each hit three-pointers on the run as the Chippewas connected on 6-of-8 from beyond the arc in the opening 20 minutes.
After Valpo got the deficit to six, 34-28, with 17:38 to play in the game, Central Michigan took control, scoring 18 of the next 20 points to build a 22-point advantage with 7:17 to play and never looked back.
Tamra Braun (Savage, Minn./Prior Lake H.S.) registered her fifth double-double in six games for the Crusaders, scoring 17 points and grabbing a season-high 13 rebounds. The senior was the only Crusader to score more than six points in the contest.
Ann Skufca led the Chippewas with 16 points while Wilson and Sharonda Hurd added 10 points each. Central Michigan finished the game 10-of-17 (58.8%) from beyond the arc while registering 12 steals on defense.
Valpo shot just 35.3% from the floor while committed the 21 turnovers, as the Crusaders dropped their fifth straight game.
Valparaiso (4-7) will take nine days off for Christmas before returning to the floor on Saturday, December 30. The Crusaders will face Saint Francis (Ind.) at the ARC with tip-off set for 1:35 p.m. with all the action carried live on WVUR (95.1-FM, Valparaiso) and online at www.valpo.edu/athletics.