Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Earn Split for Second Straight Day
Jordan Rutkowski was one of three Crusaders to earn All-Tournament honors. (Ray Acevedo)
Jordan Rutkowski was one of three Crusaders to earn All-Tournament honors. (Ray Acevedo)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Valparaiso softball team split a pair of games on Sunday to end its time at the Tiger Softball Classic in Nashville, Tenn, dropping their opener to Indiana State, 13-4, before rallying for a 14-1 victory over Alabama A&M to close tournament play.  Jennifer Hermanson (Beecher, Ill./Beecher), Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) and Sara Strickland (Phoenix, Ariz./Horizon) all earned All-Tournament Team accolades.

Alabama A&M struck first in the nightcap with a run in the top of the first, but Strickland singled to lead off the bottom of the first and eventually came around to score the tying run.  Valpo then plated five runs in the second, highlighted by a 2-RBI double from Rutkowski, to pull away from the Bulldogs, and then added one in the third and seven in the fourth for the game’s final margin, as the game was shortened to four and a half innings due to run rule.

Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) threw a complete-game three-hitter, giving up just the unearned run in the first to improve to 2-0 this year.  Janice Aleman took the loss for Alabama A&M (2-5), falling to 1-2.  Strickland went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and two RBIs for the Crusaders, while Hermanson, Jill Jacobson (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) and Kelsey Phalen (Batavia, Ill./Batavia) all also posted multi-hit games.  Rutkowski drove in three runs in the winning effort as well.

The opener did not go as well for the Crusaders, as they committed six errors in the run rule shortened game.  Indiana State (4-3) jumped out to a 9-0 lead after three innings, but the Valpo offense opened up in the final two frames, as Hermanson and fellow freshman Tori Brown (Harrison, Ohio/Harrison) each posted 2-RBI doubles in the Crusaders’ four-run fourth inning.

Shaleigh Jansen (Ottawa, Ill./Ottawa Township) fell to 1-2 on the year after taking the loss in the circle, giving up nine runs in 2.2 innings of work, only three of which were earned.  Kristen Felker moved to 2-1 this year with the win for Indiana State.  Rutkowski went 2-for-2 with two runs scored to lead Valpo against the Sycamores.

“Today was not the best day for us,” said Crusader head coach Randy Schneider.  “We made way too many mistakes in the field against Indiana State, but I give our players credit for bouncing back to beat Alabama A&M handily.  I’m happy with the way our offense is hitting the ball right now, and I feel good about where our pitching is at as well.  We just need to shore up our fielding to help us get to where we want to go.”

Over the course of the tournament’s two days, the Crusader trio on the All-Tournament Team all stood out at the plate.  Hermanson hit .400 for Valpo with four RBIs, two runs scored and two doubles.  Strickland stole four bases and hit.462, scoring five runs as well.  Rutkowski led the way for the Crusader offense, going 7-for-13 (.538) with five runs scored, four RBIs and three doubles.

Valparaiso (5-3) takes a day off Monday before moving on to two days of competition at the Rebel Spring Games in Orlando, Fla.  The Crusaders face Dayton (2 p.m. CST) and Holy Cross (4 p.m.) on Tuesday afternoon.

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
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 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