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Crusaders Open Up Track Kat Klash Friday
Torrie Decker and Valpo opened the Track Kat Klash on Friday.
Torrie Decker and Valpo opened the Track Kat Klash on Friday.

Friday, February 14, 2014

A win over #1 Arkansas State highlighted the first day of competition for the #14 Valparaiso bowling team Friday at the Track Kat Klash in Huntsville, Texas.

The Crusaders tallied 4,480 pins over Friday’s six matches, contested in the four-game baker format, ending the day in ninth place out of the 18 competing squads.  Valpo enters Saturday just 13 pins out of eighth position.

Valpo opened tournament play against #9 UW-Whitewater, but despite bowling 190 or better in each of the final three games, couldn’t overcome a 45-pin deficit after the opener in an 807-728 loss.  The Crusaders rebounded with a 689-638 victory over Louisiana Tech in their second match of the day.

Valpo would make it a three-match winning streak, topping #13 St. Francis (N.Y.) in all four games of a 768-697 win and then using an opening 209 to propel itself to a 762-691 victory over Texas Southern.  The Crusaders then went toe-to-toe with #2 Nebraska, opening with a 224 to take a 12-pin lead.  The Huskers out-scored Valpo by 37 pins over the next two games, however, and a game of 192 in the finale was not quite enough as Nebraska edged the Crusaders, 800-794.

Valpo closed the day against #1 Arkansas State and claimed a 16-pin lead after game one.  The Crusaders then posted their second-best single-game of the day with a 214 in game two to push the lead to 37 pins, and easily held off the Red Wolves over the final two games as they ended the day with a 739-702 win over the nation’s top-ranked team.

Valparaiso (42-45) continues action in Huntsville on Saturday with the second of three days of competition.