Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Fall in Series Finale at CSU
Sara Strickland hit her third home run of the season Sunday. (Ray Acevedo)
Sara Strickland hit her third home run of the season Sunday. (Ray Acevedo)

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Valparaiso could not defeat Horizon League regular season champion Cleveland State on Sunday afternoon in both teams’ regular season finales, falling to the Vikings 5-1 in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Vikings hit the scoreboard immediately in the bottom of the first inning.  Leadoff hitter Jessica Burt doubled to the right-center gap to start their half of the inning, and after stealing third later in the frame scored on an RBI single by Amy Powell.  Cleveland State had chances in the early innings to put more runs on the board, having the bases loaded with two outs in the first and with one out in the third, but Crusader hurler Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) fought her way out of both jams.

Valpo, which saw its first eight batters retired in order, had its first significant scoring chance in the top of the fourth.  With one out, Joylyn Ichiyama (Torrance, Calif./Redondo Union) singled up the middle and then Jordan Rutkowski’s (Alden, N.Y./Alden) sacrifice bunt attempt turned into a single when the ball spun away from the Viking fielders to put two on.  But a strikeout and a pop-up ended the Crusader threat.

Cleveland State (42-13, 22-2 Horizon) added to its lead in each of the next two innings.  Tess Sito drove in Megan Bashak with an RBI single in the fourth, and then Bashak turned around in the fifth and brought home two runs with a two-out double to increase the Viking lead to 4-0.  The Crusaders got a run back in the top of the sixth as Sara Strickland (Phoenix, Ariz./Horizon) launched a solo homer to center field with one out, but CSU would answer with a home run of its own by Katelyn Ciminelli in its half of the sixth to close the scoring.

McGee took the loss for the Crusaders, falling to 14-6 after giving up three runs in her 4.1 innings of work, while Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) tossed the final 1.2 innings for Valpo.  Amanda Macenko pitched all 21 innings of the series for the Vikings and earned her third victory of the weekend, improving to 36-13 with her complete game, 10-K effort.  Rutkowski picked up two of Valpo’s five hits on the day.

Valparaiso (32-19, 12-9 Horizon) closes the regular season already with a program record for victories in a single season and finished the Horizon League slate in fourth place, two places above where it was picked entering the year.  The Crusaders will be the fourth seed for the HL Championship, and will play either Butler or Green Bay to kick off tournament play Thursday, depending on today’s results.

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. #21/21 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