Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Downed at Butler 57-43
Kelly Watts registered her first double-double in a Valpo uniform. (Ray Acevedo)
Kelly Watts registered her first double-double in a Valpo uniform. (Ray Acevedo)

Saturday, January 09, 2010

Kelly Watts (Gary, Ind./East Chicago Central H.S.) scored 13 points and grabbed 15 rebounds and Laura Richards (Connersville, Ind./Connersville H.S.) added a career-high 10 points for Valparaiso, but it was not enough as the Crusaders fell on the road 57-43 at Butler on Saturday afternoon in Indianapolis, Ind.

Watts grabbed nine of her boards on the offensive end, and her scoring output was her highest since joining the Brown and Gold.

“Kelly Watts did a great job on the offensive glass,” head coach Keith Freeman said.  “She battled the boards and competed hard today.”

Valpo took its first lead of the game five minutes into the contest as Whitney Farris (Kokomo, Ind./Kokomo H.S.) drilled a triple from long range to put the Crusaders up 7-6.

Trailing by two, Betsy Adams (Monticello, Ind./Twin Lakes H.S.) converted a three-point play following a lay-in, and Watts followed with a basketball inside to make it 14-11 Valpo at the 8:01 mark.

The Crusaders would not score for the next five minutes though, and Butler went on a 10-0 run to take a seven-point lead.  Valpo fought back, with a Watts put-back of a missed free throw, her ninth rebound of the half and fifth offensive board, bringing the Crusaders within 21-20 with just over a minute to play before the break. 

Butler answered with back-to-back three-pointers by Brittany Bowen and Susan Lester right before intermission to take a 27-20 lead into the break.

“The first 19 minutes of the game we did a great job defensively, but then we gave up those two threes before half,” Freeman added.

The Bulldogs extended the lead to 11, 33-22, scoring six of the first eight points out of the locker room, and the lead fluctuated between nine and 11 until Melanie Thornton scored 11 straight points for Butler to push the lead to 48-30 with nine minutes to play.

The Crusaders were able to claw back within 12, 52-40, with 2:28 to play following back-to-back baskets by Watts, but would not get any closer the rest of the way.

“I thought Thornton was the difference in the second half,” Freeman added.  “We had a hard time controlling her and Bowen.”

Valpo finished the game shooting 30.5% from the floor, and was just 1-of-15 from three-point range while Butler connected on 50% from the field in the second half to finish shooting 43.1% for the game.  The Bulldogs held a slim 40-39 advantage on the boards, with Valpo outrebounding Butler 17-13 on the offensive end.

“We need to continue to improve defensively,” concluded Freeman.  “But more importantly we need to find ways for easy scores on offense.”

Thornton led Butler (9-5, 2-1 Horizon) with 17 points while Bowen added 15 points and eight boards.

Valparaiso (4-10, 1-2) will continue its three-game road trip on Thursday evening as the Crusaders head to Youngstown, Ohio to battle the Penguins of Youngstown State.  Tip-off is set for 6:05 p.m. CST live at the Beeghley Center.

Game Notes: The 57 points allowed by the Crusaders represents the fewest Butler has scored in a game this season … Butler lead the all-time series 17-5 and 9-1 at Hinkle Fieldhouse … Watts has tallied double-figure rebounds in three straight games and notched her first double-double as a Crusader … Valpo registered five blocked shots for the game, including three by Ashley Varner (South Bend, Ind./Washington H.S.).

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
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (48)
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (60.50)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 12 3rd/6 (335); 4th/6 (350)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 12 t-7th/13 (588)
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
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 13 t-6th/13 (895)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 13 2nd/6 (657); 5th/6 (692)
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
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19 CCD
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
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
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 Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 25 UIC
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
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
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
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
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