Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Men Ready to Run in 2011
Caleb Schmal and the Crusaders are ready for the start of the 2011 campaign. (Ray Acevedo)
Caleb Schmal and the Crusaders are ready for the start of the 2011 campaign. (Ray Acevedo)

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Three of the Valparaiso men’s cross country team’s top five runners from a season ago highlight a solid group of returnees, while a contingent of four newcomers joins the squad as well as the Crusaders prepare to open the 2011 cross country season.

Leading the way for the Crusaders’ men’s squad into 2011 are seniors Nick Fagan and Jordan Piaskowy.  Fagan placed among Valpo’s top five in all six races last season, including a 12th-place effort at the season-opening Crusader Open.  He also posted a season-best 8K time of 26:54 at the Notre Dame Invitational, ranking second among the Valpo contingent.

Piaskowy also contributed to the Valpo team score in all six races as a junior, including a pair of meets in which he was the second-fastest Valpo runner.  Piaskowy placed 11th overall in the Crusader Open, and ran a season-best 8K time of 26:34.36 at the Evansville Invitational.  Mack Morris rounds out the trio of Crusaders with senior eligibility, returning for his final season after competing in all six races in 2010.  Morris ran a 6K time of 21:30.55 at the Crusader Open, finishing 22nd overall and among Valpo’s top-five runners, and also was one of seven runners who represented the Crusaders at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional.

Five runners with junior eligibility are ready to hit the trails for the Crusaders in 2011, led by Wally Bradford.  Bradford ran in the last four meets for Valpo in 2010, placing among its top-five runners all four times out.  His best performance came at the Horizon League Championships, where he covered the 8K course in 27:18.81 and led the Crusaders’ contingent.  Redshirt junior Caleb Schmal also ran in four races last year, placing among Valpo’s top-five at the Michigan State Invitational with a season-best 8K time of 28:46.

Juniors Joe Johnson and Nathan Bluhm ran in five and four races, respectively, for the Crusaders in 2010 and will look to show continued improvement this year.  Both ran their season-best 8K times last season at the Evansville Invitational, with Johnson covering the course in 28:41.36 and Bluhm in 28:55.34.  Meanwhile, Derek Schnake returns to the squad this year after not competing in 2010.

Two sophomores are back for their second season of competition for Valpo in 2011 as well.  Kiefer Heiman competed in five meets as a freshman for the Crusaders, running a season-best 8K time of 27:54.47 at Evansville and serving as one of Valpo’s seven runners at the NCAA Great Lakes Regional.  Fellow sophomore Matthew Przybyla saw action at two meets as a rookie.  The aforementioned returnees are joined by a group of four freshmen: Kevin Adamik, Eric Hickok, Trace Ostergren and David Rutkowski.

The 2011 schedule consists of four races leading into the Horizon League Championships.  The Crusader Open will be contested for the 23rd time in 2011, and for the 18th straight year it will serve as Valpo’s season-opening meet.  Action at Sunset Hills Farm on Friday begins at 5 p.m. with the women’s race, set for five kilometers, while the men’s 6K will follow at 5:45 p.m.

Two weeks later, Valpo will travel outside of Indiana for the only time in the regular season, heading to the United States Naval Academy to compete in the Navy Invitational on Sept. 17.  On Sept. 30, a brief jaunt to the east is in the cards as the Crusaders will run at the Notre Dame Invitational, while Valpo’s final tuneup comes on Oct. 15 as it travels downstate to cover the course at the Evansville Invitational.

With four races under their belts, the Crusaders will aim to be peaking for the 2011 Horizon League Championships, hosted this year by Cleveland State University and scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 29.  The NCAA Great Lakes Regional is slated to be run Saturday, Nov. 12 in Toledo, Ohio.

M Track DePauw Invitational Greencastle, Ind.
Apr 5 9th/11 (28.33)
W Track DePauw Invitational Greencastle, Ind.
Apr 5 8th/10 (29)
W Track Stanford Invitational Stanford, Calif.
Apr 5 No Team Score
M Track Stanford Invitational Stanford, Calif.
Apr 5 No Team Score
Baseball Wright State 1 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 5 Valpo 3
Softball Detroit 0 VU Softball Field
Apr 5 Valpo 6
M Tennis Valpo 1 Green Bay, Wis.
Apr 5 Green Bay 6
Baseball Wright State 0 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 5 Valpo 2
Softball Detroit 0 VU Softball Field
Apr 5 Valpo 9
W Tennis Valpo 5 Green Bay, Wis.
Apr 5 Green Bay 2
W Golf IPFW Spring Invitational Fort Wayne, Ind. (Chestnut Hills G.C.)
Apr 6 4th/12 (311)
W Tennis Valpo 0 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 6 Milwaukee 7
Softball Detroit 0 VU Softball Field
Apr 6 Valpo 8
Baseball Wright State 4 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 6 Valpo 2
W Golf IPFW Spring Invitational Fort Wayne, Ind. (Chestnut Hills G.C.)
Apr 7 9th/12 (642)
Softball Northern Illinois 6 VU Softball Field
Apr 8 Valpo 8
Baseball Valpo 5 Evanston, Ill.
Apr 8 Northwestern 12
Softball Northern Illinois 3 8 inn.
Apr 8 Valpo 4
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 9th/18 (12)
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 5th/17 (20)
M Tennis Valpo 5 Detroit, Mich.
Apr 11 Detroit 2
Baseball Youngstown State 7 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 11 Valpo 10
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (48)
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (60.50)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 12 3rd/6 (335); 4th/6 (350)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 12 t-7th/13 (588)
M Soccer St. Joseph's College Eastgate Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo
Baseball Youngstown State 1 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo 13
Softball Cleveland State 3 VU Softball Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo 2
Volleyball Western Michigan/Butler/Eastern Michigan ARC
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo
Softball Cleveland State 4 VU Softball Field
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo 6
Baseball Youngstown State 12 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo 4
W Tennis Valpo 1 Detroit, Mich.
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Detroit 6
M Soccer Benedictine Brown Field
Apr 12, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
W Soccer Haitian National Team Brown Field
Apr 12, 7:00 p.m. Valpo
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 13 t-6th/13 (895)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 13 2nd/6 (657); 5th/6 (692)
Softball Cleveland State 6 8 inn.
Apr 13 Valpo 7
W Tennis Valpo 1 Rochester, Mich.
Apr 13 Oakland 6
M Tennis Valpo 1 Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 13 #12 Notre Dame 6
W Tennis Valpo 0 Chicago, Ill.
Apr 14 Chicago State 7
M Tennis Valpo 7 Homewood, Ill.
Apr 15 Chicago State 0
Baseball Valpo CCD
Apr 15 Toledo
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 17, 3:00 p.m. Milwaukee
M Tennis Youngstown State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18, 11:00 a.m. Valpo
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Milwaukee
W Tennis Youngstown State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
W Tennis Cleveland State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 19, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 19, 1:00 p.m. Milwaukee
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 19, 2:00 p.m. Valpo
M Tennis Cleveland State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19, 2:00 p.m. Valpo
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 20
Baseball Kalamazoo Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 21, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Ohio Northern Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 22, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22, 3:00 p.m. Western Illinois
Softball Valpo Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22, 5:00 p.m. Western Illinois
Softball Valpo Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24, 5:00 p.m. Notre Dame
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 25, 5:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 25, 3:00 p.m. Valpo