Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Announce Three More Additions for 2013 Season
Head coach Jordan Stevens announced the addition of three more players Friday. (Di Geng)
Head coach Jordan Stevens announced the addition of three more players Friday. (Di Geng)

Friday, June 08, 2012

Valparaiso softball head coach Jordan Stevens announced today that three more players have committed to join the Crusader softball program beginning with the 2013 campaign.  The Crusaders add a pair of junior college transfers in pitcher Ashlyn Michalak (Temperance, Mich./Springfield [Owens C.C.]) and outfielder Kimberlin Wallace (Newton, Ill./Newton Community [Lake Land C.C.]), as well as incoming freshman pitcher Sierra Pico (North Las Vegas, Nev./Legacy).

Michalak comes to Valpo after a standout two-year stint at Owens [Ohio] C.C., helping the Express to the NJCAA D-II national title game in 2011.  Michalak, who will have two seasons of eligibility remaining, went 17-4 with a 1.56 ERA and 202 strikeouts in 147.2 innings in 2012.  She was named OCCAC Pitcher of the Year, earning a First Team All-Conference spot, and was also a First Team All-Region XII honoree.  As a freshman, Michalak went 11-1 and struck out 77 batters in 59 innings.

“We were very happy to add a pitcher with Ashlyn's talent to our pitching staff,” said Stevens.  “Not only will her skill be an asset to us, but she provides us with much-needed experience in the circle.  She has a solid softball pedigree and comes from great programs.”

Wallace joins the Crusader program after spending two seasons at Lake Land [Ill.] H.S., helping the Lady Lakers to berths at the NJCAA D-I national tournament in both 2011 and 2012.  Wallace, who will have two years of eligibility remaining, was part of a Lake Land squad which combined to go 95-19 over her two seasons and won two NJCAA District 24 titles.  The Newton Community H.S. product was named to the Region 24 All-Tournament Team as a sophomore and was the Defensive Player of the Tournament at the national championships as a freshman.  Wallace hit .405 with 41 runs scored and 36 RBIs in 2012 after posting a .366 average with 46 runs and 34 RBIs in 2011.

“Kimberlin is hands down one of the best defensive outfielders around,” said Stevens.  “Her style of play in the field and at the plate, as well as her approach to how the game is played, is an exact fit for how we do things.  She has been well-trained and schooled in the game, which will help very much in her transition to Valpo.”

Pico comes to Valpo after earning First Team Class 4A All-State honors for a senior season in which she posted a 1.74 ERA and struck out 159 hitters in 125 innings of work.  Also named the Northwest League Pitcher of the Year, Pico stood out at the plate as well in 2012, hitting .406 with 37 runs scored and 21 RBIs.  Pico’s senior season closed out an impressive four-year prep career that saw her strike out 699 batters in 584 innings.  She earned First Team All-Conference honors in each of her final three years and was also a Second Team All-State honoree as a junior.

“Sierra is a highly touted All-State pitcher from Nevada that just makes our staff that much better,” said Stevens.  “She can pitch, hit and play infield, which will be an added benefit as we can use that athleticism to our teams’ full advantage.”

The trio joins the previously announced six players who signed with the Crusaders back in the fall: Janelle Bouchard, Mackenzie Buchelt, Sydney Dow, Kendra Marshall, Kaitlyn Ranieri and Taylor Weissenhofer.  The nine newcomers are joining a Valpo softball program which is coming off the winningest season in program history and its first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament.

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