Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Splits HL Softball Twinbill With UIC Saturday
Jordan Rutkowski went 4-for-6 over the course of Saturday's twinbill. (Dave Schofield)
Jordan Rutkowski went 4-for-6 over the course of Saturday's twinbill. (Dave Schofield)

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Valparaiso earned a split of its Horizon League doubleheader with UIC Saturday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field by virtue of a 5-2 victory in the nightcap.  The Flames claimed a 4-1 win in the opener, snapping Valpo's school-record 13-game winning streak.

“We didn't have to say too much in between games to bounce back from a loss,” said Crusader head coach Jordan Stevens.  “We thought we played well in the first game, and just didn't come through when we needed to with hits.  We only made a couple bad pitches, swung the bat well and played good defense, so we didn't have to say much to get the team ready for game two.”

The Crusaders opened the scoring in the nightcap with a single run in the second inning, as senior KC Boldt (Red Wing, Minn./Red Wing) led off the inning with a walk and eventually made it to third base with one out.  Fellow senior Sadie Conner (Washington, Ill./Washington), who was on first, took off for second and got herself caught in a rundown, allowing Boldt to scamper home with the game's first run.  Valpo added another run in the third as well when sophomore Tori Brown (Harrison, Ohio/Harrison) led off with a single and came around to score on an RBI single up the middle by freshman Angie Doerffler (Fort Wayne, Ind./Concordia Lutheran).

Then Valpo posted a three-spot on the scoreboard in the fourth frame.  Boldt and junior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) led off the inning with back-to-back singles, and a walk to Conner loaded the bases with nobody away.  Junior Kelsey Phalen (Batavia, Ill./Batavia) then drew a four-pitch walk to force home Boldt to give Valpo a 3-0 advantage.  Following a pitching change, Brown grounded a ball to the right side, where the only UIC play was to second as Rutkowski crossed the plate.  With runners on the corners, the Crusaders successfully pulled off the double steal this time, as Brown took second and Conner stole home to push the lead to 5-0.

Crusader starter Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) took Valpo home from there, with a little help from her defense.  A two-out UIC rally in the fifth consisted of three straight singles, plating one run and giving the Flames runners on the corners with a chance to score more, but Rutkowski nailed Carly DeMarco trying to steal to escape any further damage.  A one-out solo homer by Jenna Marsalli cut the Valpo lead to 5-2 in the sixth, but McGee set down the final five Flames in order to close the game.

McGee improved to 11-3 on the year with the complete-game victory, already tied for eighth-most victories in a single season in program history.  UIC starter Ashley Hewett took the loss, giving up all five runs in three-plus innings to fall to 6-4.  Boldt and Rutkowski, the Crusaders' four and five hitters, combined to go 5-for-5 with three runs scored in the nightcap.

“Sam did her job for us today,” said Stevens.  “We needed to get a split out of today, and she came in and threw a good game for us.”

The opener swung UIC's way on just two swings of the bat, as Coryn Schmit launched a pair of home runs.  Facing a 1-2 count with two outs in the first, Schmit lifted a three-run homer the opposite way to right field to give the Flames a quick 3-0 lead.  Valpo got a run back in its half of the first, as junior Sara Strickland (Scottsdale, Ariz./Horizon) worked an 0-2 count back to 3-2 before slapping a single through the left side and then came around to score on back-to-back singles by Boldt and Rutkowski.

Schmit closed the scoring with a long ball to left-center field to open the fourth inning as the Flames took a 4-1 lead.  Valpo's best chance at cutting into the deficit came in its half of the fourth, as Phalen reached second on a two-base error with one out by UIC second baseman Christie Seddon, but she could only advance as far as third base.  The Crusaders' last 10 hitters eventually were retired in order as the Flames snapped Valpo's 13-game win streak.

Junior Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) suffered the complete-game loss for Valpo, falling to 7-6 despite striking out six Flame hitters.  Devin Miller earned the win for UIC (11-14, 2-2 Horizon), going the distance and scattering six hits.  Brown was the only Crusader hitter to have a multi-hit game in the opener.

Valparaiso (21-11, 4-1 Horizon) closes out the three-game series with UIC Sunday afternoon with a scheduled 1 p.m. first pitch.  All the action can be heard live on WVUR, 95.1 FM, Valparaiso and online at www.valpoathletics.com, which will also have a link for live stats.  With possible inclement weather in the forecast, keep refreshing the official Crusader website Sunday for any weather-related updates.

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