Friday, February 10, 2012
From tip-off to the closing minutes, the Crusader victory was never in doubt. Thanks to Ryan Broekhoff, Valpo jumped ahead early and never looked back blowing past Cleveland State. With their second victory over Cleveland State this season, the Crusaders are in first place and control their own destiny. With the important victory, the Crusaders catapulted to 84 in RPI to substantially improve their resume and NCAA tournament hopes.
Valpo shot 41.9% with an astounding 11 three pointers (6 from Broekhoff, 4 from Edwards, 1 from Bogan). Broekhoff dominated the first half and continued to find weaknesses within the Viking defense, finishing with 24 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals. After an early injury to Van Wijk, Richie Edwards stepped up once again scoring 20 points to accompany his 6 rebounds.
This victory was nothing but pure domination by Valpo. Just to put in perspective how much Valpo thoroughly outplayed Cleveland State, the Vikings did not make their first field goal until 11:38 left to go in the first half. The Crusaders ability to mix defensive looks (man-to-man, 3-2 zone, 2-3 zone, 2-2-1 zone) kept the Cleveland State squad confused, allowing Valpo to widen their lead and put the game out of reach.
The triumphant Crusaders are back in action Saturday at 6 against Youngstown State, which can be seen on the Horizon League Network.
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