Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo VB Hosts South Dakota State, Travels to Wright State
Ellen Vanden Berg averaged better than a block per set last weekend. (Ray Acevedo)
Ellen Vanden Berg averaged better than a block per set last weekend. (Ray Acevedo)
South Dakota State (11-4)
at
Valparaiso (9-8)
9/26/2012 | Valparaiso, Ind. | Attendance: 578
1st2nd3rd4th5th
South Dakota State25142525 --
Valparaiso21251419 --
Stats at a GlanceSDSUVALPO
Hitting Pct..211.142
Kills5650
Errors1925
Total Attacks175176
Assists5147
Aces13
Digs8789
Blocks13.06.0
Statistical LeadersSDSUVALPO
KillsKelli Fiegen - 12
DENT - 9
AssistsLexi Fowler - 20
BERRINGTON - 19
AcesMargit Hansing - 1
DOOMS - 1
HAUCH - 1
BERRINGTON - 1
DigsShay Birath - 26
ROOT - 27
BlocksKelli Fiegen - 8
BEIL - 3
DENT - 3

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Valparaiso (9-7, 1-1 Horizon)
Wednesday, Sept. 26 - 7 p.m. - South Dakota State (10-4, 3-1 Summit)
Friday, Sept. 28 - 6 p.m. CDT - at Wright State (2-17, 0-2 Horizon)

This Week in Crusader Volleyball: Valparaiso returns home for just the second time this year on Wednesday evening as the Crusaders host a non-league contest against South Dakota State. Two days later, Valpo kicks off a stretch of seven straight Horizon League matches at Wright State.

Previously: Valpo earned a split on the opening weekend of Horizon League play, falling at UIC on Friday night before winning at Loyola on Saturday afternoon, both in four sets. The pair of tight matches saw 73 total tie scores and 31 lead changes over the eight sets.

Next Up: The Crusaders play their first home league weekend on Homecoming weekend, October 5-6. Valpo hosts Cleveland State Friday night at 7 p.m. and Youngstown State Saturday evening at 5 p.m.

Following the Crusaders: Live video for both of this week’s matches will be available through the Horizon League Network, as well as live audio of the South Dakota State match on WVUR (95.1 FM, Valparaiso). Links to the audio and video webcasts, as well as live stats, can be found at www.valpoathletics.com.

Head Coach Carin Avery: Over her 10-plus years as head coach, Carin Avery has won 250 matches and has led Valpo to three league regular season and tournament titles, as well as three NCAA Tournament appearances. A two-time league Coach of the Year, Avery has coached 42 All-League recipients over her tenure as Crusader head coach. She is Valpo’s all-time leader in both victories and winning percentage, and now owns 305 career victories overall.

Series Notes: After meeting South Dakota State just once in program history prior to this season (a loss in 2006), the Crusaders and Jackrabbits are facing off for the second time this year, as Valpo earned a 3-2 win over SDSU earlier this year at the Hawkeye Challenge. Morgan Beil posted 12 kills in that match, with Ellen Vanden Berg and Kelsey Victor earning 11 apiece. Valpo is just 12-14 all-time against Wright State, but holds a 9-1 advantage since joining the Horizon League, including eight straight victories over the Raiders.

Scouting the Opposition: South Dakota State enters Wednesday’s match with a 10-4 mark on the season and sits at 3-1 in Summit League play. The Jackrabbits are led on both sides of the ball by middle Kelli Fiegen, who averages 3.09 kills/set on .365 hitting and 1.47 blocks/set. Wright State is just 2-17 this year, falling in four sets to both Loyola and UIC last weekend. Heidi Splinter averages a team-high 3.06 kills/set, while libero Katie Glassmeyer posts 4.28 digs/set.

Looking Back at 2011: The 2011 season saw Valparaiso again reach the 20-win plateau, as it finished the year with a 20-15 record, including a 9-7 mark to finish in fourth place in the Horizon League standings. Junior Taylor Root repeated as the Horizon League Defensive Player of the Year and was joined on the All-League team by senior Jenny Pokorny and freshman Morgan Beil, who also earned All-Newcomer Team accolades.

Root on Record Watch: While senior libero Taylor Root already owns the Horizon League career digs record, she is still chasing Brittany Malicoat for Valpo’s career record in the category. Root, who picked up 38 digs last weekend, has now tallied 287 digs this year, bumping her career total to 2,304, just five digs shy of tying and six shy of breaking Malicoat’s record. Looking ahead, Root is also just 152 digs shy of the NCAA’s all-time top-10 in the category.

Playing Tight Sets: The Crusaders’ first two Horizon League matches of the year featured a number of tight sets as Valpo split the weekend contests. Four of the eight sets went to extra points, while the lowest number of points scored by the losing team in a single set was 20. Additionally, over the eight sets, there were 73 tie scores and 31 lead changes, including an astounding 21 ties and 11 lead changes in set two at Loyola, which Valpo dropped 31-29.

Balanced Offensive Attack: One of the keys to the Crusaders’ success this year has been balance in the offensive attack, and that was showcased again last weekend. Over the two matches, three Crusaders posted double-digit kill totals, with Sarah Dooms doing it at UIC, while Morgan Beil and Ellen Vanden Berg each reached double figures at Loyola. On the season, six different players have paced the Crusaders at least once in kills, with Beil doing it a team-high five times. Valpo also boasts four players averaging between 2.03 and 2.39 kills/set.

Tournament Title: Valpo captured the Hoosier Classic crown two weekends ago after defeating host Indiana, Miami (Ohio) and UT-Chattanooga in its final weekend of pre-league tournament play. The championship was the Crusaders’ first in an in-season tournament since capturing the Bradley Invitational in 2010, the last of three straight titles. It marks the 15th in-season tournament title for Valparaiso in Coach Avery’s 11th season at the helm.

Honorees: Six Crusaders in all have earned various honors in 2012. Sarah Dooms, Ellen Vanden Berg and Kelsey Victor all were named to the All-Tournament squad at the Hoosier Classic last weekend. Victor was tabbed tournament MVP, while Vanden Berg went on to be named the HL Defensive Player of the Week. Morgan Beil earned All-Tournament accolades at the MSU Eagle Challenge, Janelle Hobbs was honored for the first time in her career at Saint Louis’ Active Ankle Challenge, and Vanden Berg and Taylor Root both received All-Tournament honors at Iowa’s Hawkeye Challenge.

Ten Straight 20-Win Seasons: The Crusaders’ 20 victories last year helped the program continue a tremendous streak of success. Valparaiso has won 20 or more matches every year since 2002, Avery’s first at the helm of the Crusader program. Valpo is one of just 12 programs nationwide to have won at least 20 matches in each of the last ten years, a group which also includes Colorado State, Dayton, Florida, Hawai’i, Missouri State, Nebraska, Ohio, Penn State, Stanford, UNI and Western Kentucky.

Crusaders Picked Third in Preseason Poll: The Horizon League head coaches have selected Valparaiso to finish in third place in the league this season according to the preseason poll. The Crusaders trailed only Milwaukee and Cleveland State in the polling.

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 3rd/5 (82)
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 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 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 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
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
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
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