Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo & Notre Dame Tip Off 40th Meeting; Crusaders Play At United Center For First Time

Friday, January 03, 2003

VALPO (5-6) vs. NOTRE DAME (11-1)

WHEN: Saturday, January 4 - 1 p.m. CST

WHERE: United Center, Chicago, Illinois

TV: (tape-delay) - WYIN Channel 56 - Dick Harlan and Joe Arredondo announcing. Airs same day at 5 p.m.

RADIO: WEFM (95.9, Michigan City), WVUR-FM (95.1, Valparaiso) - Todd Ickow and Ed Schillinger announcing.

THE COACHES: Valparaiso is guided by Scott Drew, who has a career record of 5-6 in his 1st season. Notre Dame is led by Mike Brey, who has a career mark of 152-74 in his 8th season.

SERIES RECORD: Notre Dame leads 36-3
LAST MEETING: 1999-00 - Notre Dame won 65-42

LAST GAME: Valpo lost to Missouri 65-47 on Monday in Columbia, Missouri. Notre Dame defeated Vanderbilt 76-63 on Monday in South Bend, Indiana.

NEXT UP: Valpo hosts Western Illinois next Saturday at 7:05 p.m. in the Mid-Continent Conference opener.

On Saturday afternoon, Valpo (5-6) entertains Notre Dame (11-1) at Chicago's United Center in the 40th meeting between the schools on the hardwood. The Crusaders will be playing at the United Center for the first time in school history.

Valpo is coming off a two-game road trip that concluded with Monday's 65-47 loss to Missouri. The Crusaders, who outrebounded the Tigers 31-23, trailed 21-20 at halftime. Stalin Ortiz came off the bench to lead Valpo with 13 points and six rebounds. Kikas Gomes added 12 points, five rebounds and four steals.

Notre Dame owns a seven-game win streak after defeating Vanderbilt on Monday in South Bend. Five Irish tallied double figures, led by Chris Thomas with 19 points. Torin Francis recorded a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Both schools entered the 2002-03 campaign following impressive seasons a year ago. Valpo set a school record with 25 wins while capturing its seventh Mid-Continent Conference regular season and tournament championships. The Crusaders played in their sixth NCAA Tournament. Notre Dame finished 22-11, advancing to the second round of the NCAA tourney before losing a close second-round game to Duke.

Valpo's most recent victories in the series were in 1993 (80-66 at Notre Dame) and 1988 - the "Lutheran Miracle" 71-68 overtime win. The Irish won the last meeting in 1999-00 by a 65-42 score at Notre Dame.

NO PLACE LIKE HOME: A Dec. 23rd victory over Central Michigan extended Valpo's homecourt win streak at the Athletics-Recreation Center to 16.

GRAFS' PLAY HELPS IGNITE VALPO: Senior Raitis Grafs, who was selected as the Mid-Continent Conference Player of the Week for the week ending Dec. 15, has keyed the Crusaders' over the last five games - three of which were wins. The 6'11" center has averaged 18.4 ppg., 4.8 rpg. and 2.1 blocked shots during the stretch.

HOT AT THE STRIPE: Over the last six games, the Crusaders are shooting 74.5 percent from the free throw line, making 114 of 153 charity tosses. Raitis Grafs made 89.2 percent (33 of 37) during that span, while Ali Berdiel (25 for 30) drained 83.3 percent and Seth Colclasure (8 for 8) was perfect at the stripe.



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
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 5th/17 (20)
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 9th/18 (12)
M Tennis Valpo 5 Detroit, Mich.
Apr 11 Detroit 2
Baseball Youngstown State 7 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 11 Valpo 10
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (60.50)
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (48)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 12 t-7th/13 (588)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 12 3rd/6 (335); 4th/6 (350)
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
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 13 2nd/6 (657); 5th/6 (692)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 13 t-6th/13 (895)
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
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Milwaukee
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
W Tennis Youngstown State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
W Tennis Cleveland State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19, 10:00 a.m. Valpo
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
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
W 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
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 26 Horizon League Tournament
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 26, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 26, 12:00 p.m. Wright State
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 26, 2:00 p.m. Wright State
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 27, 2:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 27, 12:00 p.m. Wright State
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 27, 12:00 p.m. Valpo