Valparaiso will battle Mid-Continent Conference Tournament host Western Illinois on Thursday afternoon at 3 p.m. in the Crusaders' first appearance in the league championships since 2003.
Valpo (21-32, 10-10 Mid-Con), the tournament's third seed, and Western Illinois (31-24, 11-9) will battle in the second game of the day at Alfred D. Boyer Stadium in Macomb, Ill. following the contest between regular season champion and top seed Oral Roberts (37-15, 19-1) and fourth-seeded Centenary (26-29, 9-11), which play at 11:30 a.m.
The double elimination event will continue on Friday with the two first round losers squaring off at 10 a.m. and the two winners meeting at 1:15 p.m. Play will continue at 4:30 p.m. on Friday with the championship round set for 11:30 a.m. on Saturday.
Western Illinois won three out of four games against the Crusaders during the regular season. Valpo won three contests against Centenary while taking one of four against Oral Roberts.
The Crusaders finished at .500 in the league for the first time since 2001, which was also the last time that Valpo placed third in the conference standings.
All of Valpo's games will be able to be heard live online at www.sportsjuice.com.