Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Earns 20th Victory, Downs Southern Utah to Advance to Mid-Con Semifinals

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Valparaiso never trailed Saturday afternoon on its way to its 20th victory of the season for just the fifth time in school history as the Crusaders defeated Southern Utah 60-45 in the quarterfinals of the Mid-Continent Conference Tournament at John Q. Hammons Arena in Tulsa, Okla.

With the victory, the Crusaders match their third highest victory total in school history improving to 20-10 on the year.

Valpo, the tournament's second seed, jumped out to a quick 6-0 lead only to have the Thunderbirds cut the Crusader advantage to one, 12-11, with 12:02 to play in the half.

The Crusaders defense clamped down, holding the Thunderbirds scoreless for more than eight minutes while going on a 14-0 run, keyed by three triples from Carrie Myers (Stickleyville, Va./Lee H.S.) to increase the lead to 26-11 at the four minute mark of the half.

Betsy Rietema's (Grand Rapids, Mich./Christian H.S.) eight-footer as the horn went off sent the Crusaders into the locker room with a 32-18 advantage.

Valpo got on the boards in the first half, especially offensively, holding a 27-14 edge. The Crusaders had 11 offensive rebounds, led by Rietema's five. Defensively, Valpo held Southern Utah to just 25.9% shooting in the opening 20 minutes of play.

A 13-0 run triggered by triples from Myers, Rietema, and Agnieszka Kulaga (Tarnow, Poland/I Liceum Ogolnoksztalcace H.S.) gave Valpo a 47-21 lead with 12:27 to play in the game.

Southern Utah cut into the Brown and Gold lead with a 12-2 run to close within 16, 51-35 with eight minutes to play, but Valpo would not allow the Thunderbirds to get any closer on their way to registering the victory and moving into the tournament semifinals for the fifth time in six years.

Myers led the Crusaders with 14 points, including 4-of-8 shooting from long range, while Kulaga added 13 points and four assists. For Kulaga, it was her highest scoring game since November 30. Sarah Ott (Chippewa Falls, Wis./Chippewa Falls H.S.) added 11 points, scoring in double figures for the first time since late January.

Rietema and Tamra Braun (Savage, Minn./Prior Lake H.S.) each grabbed a game high 12 rebounds for the Crusaders as Valpo outboarded Southern Utah 47-34.

Julie Stradling led Southern Utah (9-20) with 11 points while Cash Connors added nine points. As a team, the seventh-seeded Thunderbirds shot just 29.3% from the floor on the afternoon.

Valparaiso, winners of six in a row, its longest winning streak since the 2001-2002 season, will return to the court on Monday afternoon for its semifinal game against the winner of Sunday's quarterfinal between third-seeded Oral Roberts and number six seed UMKC. Valpo won both meetings against each school this season. Tip-off is set for 2:30 p.m. with all the action carried live on WVUR (95.1-FM, Valparaiso) and online at www.valpo.edu/athletics.
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