Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Fall in League Opener at Butler
Brittany Malicoat picked up a match-best 21 digs Friday.
Brittany Malicoat picked up a match-best 21 digs Friday.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Valparaiso opened league play Friday evening at Butler, dropping a 3-0 (25-23, 25-21, 25-21) decision to the Bulldogs.

The opening set looked to be going the Crusaders’ way early, as a 5-0 spurt near the beginning of the frame keyed by a pair of kills from Angie Porché (Lynwood, Ill./Thornton Fractional South) gave Valpo a 10-6 edge.  The teams traded points through the middle stages of the set until the Crusaders put together a 4-1 mini-run with kills from Porché and Jill Meyer (Crystal Lake, Ill./South) to take a 20-15 advantage.

But the Bulldogs stormed back, scoring the next six points in succession to take a 21-20 lead while forcing the Crusaders to use both of their timeouts in the process.  Valpo tied the set at 21 and 22, both times getting kills from setter Kim Bukowski (Waukesha, Wis./West), and fought off Butler’s first set point on another kill from Porché, but could never retake the lead, as a Kelsey Labrum kill ended the opener.

“When we had the lead at 20-15, and Butler went on its big run, the momentum started to swing,” said Crusader head coach Carin Avery.  “Once they won that set, from that point on, it was a huge change in momentum for both teams: positive for Butler and negative for us.”

The second set was tight early until the Bulldogs capitalized on a pair of Crusader service errors to spark a 7-2 run and take a 12-8 advantage.  Valpo fought back, scoring five of the next seven points, including kills from Meyer and Allison Sears (Elkhart, Ind./Memorial) to crawl back to within one at 14-13.  But that was as close as Valpo would get the remainder of the frame, as Butler never let the Crusaders tie it up as the Bulldogs took a 2-0 advantage into the break.

Porché looked to carry Valpo early on in the third frame, registering kills for each of the Crusaders’ first four points, while Val Bollenbacher (Bremen, Ind./Bremen) also recorded a pair of early terminations as Valpo gained a 9-7 lead.  But the lead was erased quickly by Butler with four straight points to take an 11-9 advantage.

The Crusaders briefly tied the set at 11 on another kill by Porché before Butler rolled off seven straight and nine of the next ten points to take control.  Valpo made an 6-0 run on the serve of Haley Wise (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) late to tighten up the set, but it wasn’t enough as the Bulldogs completed the sweep.

Porché paced the Valpo offense with 13 kills, but was the only Crusader to finish in double figures in the category.  Bukowski added five kills without an error and also handed out 22 assists on the night.  Defensively, Brittany Malicoat (Elkhart, Ind./Memorial) posted a match-best 21 digs, leaving her just 14 digs shy of reaching Sara Silcox’s career record in the category.

Butler (11-2, 1-0 Horizon) was led by Porshia Allen, who posted 13 kills on the night, while Jessica Wolfe contributed 11 kills on .407 hitting.  Wolfe also put up six blocks while teammate Melody Austin added eight rejections.

“We got out-played in every aspect of the match tonight,” said Avery.  “You have to give credit to Butler, as they played a very solid match.  But when you commit 11 service errors, get out-blocked 11-2 and get out-dug, you’re not going to win many matches.”

Valparaiso (7-3, 0-1 Horizon) returns to action next Friday, Sept. 26 as the Crusaders head to Wisconsin to take on Green Bay.  First serve is slated for 7 p.m., and all the action can be heard live on WVUR, 95.1 FM, Valparaiso.  Links for live stats along with audio and video can be found at www.valpoathletics.com.

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
M Track Cougar Invitational River Forest, Ill.
Apr 17 No Team Score
W Track Cougar Invitational River Forest, Ill.
Apr 17 No Team Score
Baseball Valpo 4 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 17 Milwaukee 0
M Tennis Youngstown State 1 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18 Valpo 6
Baseball Valpo 0 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 18 Milwaukee 3
Softball Oakland 3 VU Softball Field
Apr 18 Valpo 11
W Tennis Youngstown State 7 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18 Valpo 0
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19 CCD
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 2nd/3 (191)
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 3rd/5 (82)
W Tennis Cleveland State 7 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19 Valpo 0
Softball Oakland 1 VU Softball Field
Apr 19 Valpo 2
Baseball Valpo 0 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 19 Milwaukee 5
Softball Oakland 4 8 inn.
Apr 19 Valpo 2
M Tennis Cleveland State 5 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19 Valpo 2
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 20 12th/15 (314)
Baseball Kalamazoo 3 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 21 Valpo 10
Baseball Ohio Northern 2 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 22 Valpo 1
Softball Valpo 3 Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22 Western Illinois 1
Softball Valpo 5 Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22 Western Illinois 4
Softball Valpo Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24, 5:00 p.m. Notre Dame
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
M 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 Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 25, 2:00 p.m. UIC
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 25, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 26, 3:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
W 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
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
M 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
Baseball Western Michigan Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 29, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball IUPUI VU Softball Field
Apr 29, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball IUPUI VU Softball Field
Apr 29, 5:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Chicago State Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 30, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Bloomington, Ind.
Apr 30, 3:00 p.m. Indiana (resumption of suspended game)
Softball Valpo Bloomington, Ind.
Apr 30, 4:00 p.m. Indiana
W Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 2
M Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 2
Baseball Oakland Emory G. Bauer Field
May 2, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
M Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 3
W Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 3
Baseball Oakland Emory G. Bauer Field
May 3, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Green Bay, Wis.
May 3, 1:00 p.m. Green Bay
Softball Valpo Green Bay, Wis.
May 3, 3:00 p.m. Green Bay