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CRUSADERS HEAD TO ORAL ROBERTS FOR SECOND PLACE SHOWDOWN ON SATURDAY
Thursday, February 27, 2003WHEN: Saturday, March 1, 2003, 2:05 p.m.
WHERE: Mabee Center (10,575), Tulsa, Okla.
RADIO: WVUR (95.1-FM), Valparaiso. Andrew Stem will provide the play-by-play, with Andy Viano adding the color commentary.
TV: AT&T Cable (tape-delay). Dick Harlan and Paul Curtis will broadcast the game.
THE COACHES: Valparaiso is led by Keith Freeman, who is in his 15th season of coaching, and 9th with the Crusaders. He is 280-151 overall and 151-104 with Valpo. Oral Roberts is led by Jerry Finkbeiner, who is 286-116 in his 13th season overall and 100-97 in his 7th season with the Golden Eagles.
SERIES RECORD: Valparaiso leads the overall series with the Golden Eagles 9-4. The Crusaders have won the last four meetings between the schools.
LAST MEETING: The Crusaders downed Oral Roberts 66-43 back on Feb. 3 at the Athletics-Recreation Center. Valpo held the Golden Eagles to just three field goals and 14 points in the first half on the way to the victory. Suzie Hammel led all scorers with 19 points on 6-of-9 shooting from three-point range for the Brown and Gold, while Jeanette Gray added ten points. Amanda Stone and Stephanie Clark led Oral Roberts with eight points each.
The Valparaiso Crusaders take to the road on Saturday afternoon to face off against Oral Roberts, one of two teams tied with the Brown and Gold in the Mid-Continent Conference standings. Valpo is coming off of a 77-54 victory over Oakland on Senior Night Monday evening.
GRAY JOINS 1,400/700 CLUB: Senior Jeanette Gray joined Sarah Stricklett as the only two Crusaders ever to score 1,400 points and grab 700 rebounds in their career when she scored four points on Monday to total 1,403 for her career. She has brought down 710 rebounds in her four years wearing the Brown and Gold.
HAMMEL MOVES UP SINGLE SEASON CHARTS: Suzie Hammel's 52 three-point field goals rank her seventh on Valpo's single season list. With six more makes, she will move into fifth place. The junior's 159 attempts are the sixth most in Crusader history.
THE UNSELFISH ONE: Sophomore point guard Katie Boone has truly been a leader on the floor for the Crusaders over the last several games. In each of her last three contests Boone has dished out nine assists, matching her career best. Monday she also tied her season-high scoring 13 points.
STANGLER POSTS SEASON'S BEST: Jenna Stangler turned in one of her best performances of the year on Monday evening scoring a season-high 16 points. The sophomore forward hit 8-of-11 shots from the floor, added five rebounds, and dished out three assists.
SPREAD THE SCORING AROUND: Nine different players have scored in double-figures for the Crusaders this season, while six different players have led the Brown and Gold in single-game scoring over the course of the season.
A WINNING TRADITION: With one more win this season, Valparaiso will be assured of its 12th winning season in the last 13 years. A win would also mean the Crusaders will have posted a winning conference record ten times over the 11 seasons the Mid-Con has sponsored women's basketball.
ORAL ROBERTS NOTES: Oral Roberts looks to rebound at home after its ten-game homecourt win streak came to an end as the Golden Eagles fell 76-71 to UMKC on Monday evening. Prior to the loss, Oral Roberts had won four straight contests.
Cori Williston leads the Golden Eagles in scoring, tallying 12.2 points per game. The Mid-Con's top three-point shooter at 43.2% on the season, Williston poured in 18 points against UMKC.
Stephanie Clark ranks second on the team in scoring with 11.7 ppg. Oral Roberts' leading rebounder, she ranks third in the Mid-Con grabbing 7.8 boards per night.
Leah Cannon is the third Golden Eagle to average in double-figures at 10.1 ppg. She also leads the Mid-Con with a 1.51 assist-to-turnover ratio and is second dishing out 5.36 assists per night.
As a team, Oral Roberts leads the Mid-Con in three-point field goal percentage (37.2%) and steals (15.24).
The Golden Eagles close the regular season Monday night hosting Western Illinois.
DOWN THE ROAD: Valparaiso will close out the regular season on Monday evening when the Crusaders travel to Kansas City, Mo. for a 7 p.m. game against the Kangaroos of UMKC. The Brown and Gold will then return to Kansas City on March 8-11 for the Mid-Continent Conference Tournament at Kemper Arena.