#23 DePaul Sweeps Crusaders
Tuesday, April 4, 2006
Shannon Robinson (Toronto, Ontario/John Redmond) and Alicia Ashburn (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) hit seventh inning home runs in game two, but it was not enough as #23 DePaul swept Valpo 9-0 (5 inn.) and 7-3 Tuesday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field in Valparaiso, Ind.

Robinson got the Crusaders on the board with one out, belting her second longball of the year well beyond the centerfield fence. Then, after a Courtney LaFerle (Elgin, Ill./Larkin) single, Ashburn cranked her fourth of the year just the beyond the wall in left. Ashburn's four homers are the fifth most in a single-season at Valpo, and five shy of Karen Constien's record-setting 2004 campaign.

Early in the second game, the Crusaders had several chances to take a quick lead, but stranded four runners in the first two innings on their way to 10 left on base in the game. With the score 1-0 in the Blue Demon third, Sandy Vojik drove in three runs with a double giving the visitors a nice working margin.

The Brown and Gold had another great chance to score in the fourth, loading the bases with no one out on hits from Ashburn and Beth Adamski (Saint John, Ind./Lake Central), and a walk to Mallory Gill (Beloit, Wis./Memorial). But the next two hitters grounded into force plays at home, and Taylor Callahan (Pendergrass, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian) struck out swinging to end the threat.

Stephanie Blagaich (4-1) went six shutout innings for the win, while Andrea Zappia (Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central) tossed a complete game but suffered the loss, falling to 4-7.

Game one was all Blue Demons, as the 2005 College World Series participants got going early. After a two-out error in the first, DePaul collected three straight hits to plate three straight runs in the frame.

After another run in the second, DePaul put up another three-spot in the third and got some icing on the cake when Marcy Wilus went yard in the fourth.

Blagaich threw four shutout innings for the Blue Demons (16-9), earning the win, and Chris Halstead (Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral) lasted only 2.2 innings, taking the loss.

Robinson, LaFerle and Ashburn all had solid days at the plate, recording three hits apiece.

The Crusaders (10-16) return the diamond Friday afternoon to open a crucial four-game series against Mid-Con rival IUPUI. Friday's doubleheader is set to begin at 4:00 p.m., while first pitch for Saturday is slated for 12:00 p.m.

Game one box score
Game two box score