The Valparaiso football program held its annual Brown-Gold spring game on Saturday at Brown Field, with the Crusader defense picking up an 82-68 victory over the offense. The game served as the culmination of the Crusaders’ spring practice sessions.
The Valpo defense started the annual scrimmage with the upper hand, coming up with interceptions on four of the first five possessions. Alex Green (Zionsville, Ind./Zionsville Community) started the string of forced turnovers with a pick on the offense’s second drive. Carlos Hunter (Skokie, Ill./North Shore Country Day), Melvin Graham III (Indianapolis, Ind./North Central) and Roberto Kelly (West Palm Beach, Fla./The Kings Academy) followed with interceptions of their own on the ensuing three possessions.
Later in the game, Ryan Mundy (West Lafayette, Ind./Harrison) would add an interception as well as the Valpo linebackers came up with four of the five picks on the day. The defense also recovered a pair of fumbles and had a number of sacks as well in the winning effort.
The Crusader offense bounced back from the tough start in windy weather to come up with a number of big plays of its own. Three quarterbacks combined for four touchdown passes, led by two from Ryan Gorski (San Diego, Calif./Scripps Ranch), who hit Jake Hutson (Blanchard, Mich./Montabella) with a 45-yard screen pass for a score and also added a touchdown throw to Alex Hentgen (Wabash, Ind./Wabash).
Eric Hoffman (Manitowoc, Wis./Lincoln) and Tanner Kuramata (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif./Claremont) hooked up for the biggest play of the day, a 65-yard touchdown pass, while Scott Staal (Grand Haven, Mich./Grand Haven) connected with Dylan Simkin (Cincinnati, Ohio/Oak Hills) for a touchdown reception as well. Hutson also scored a touchdown for the Crusader offense on the ground.
"The offense started slow and fell behind the defense, but then they came back," Crusader head coach Dale Carlson said. "In the past when something bad happens, we struggle. I thought today we did a good job of bouncing back. It shows that we're learning how to respond."
With spring practice now in the books, the Crusaders look ahead to training camp and the start of the 2013 campaign, which kicks off at North Dakota on Thursday, Aug. 29.