Valparaiso cruised to an 89-44 victory over Saint Joseph’s (Ind.) on Saturday afternoon at the Athletics-Recreation Center in the Crusaders’ final exhibition game before the 2008-2009 season tips off for real.
Valpo jumped out to a 22-5 lead just seven-and-a-half into the game. The Pumas cut the Crusaders lead to nine, 24-15, with just over nine minutes to play before intermission, but would not get any closer the rest of the night.
A 46-23 halftime advantage was quickly extended to 65-28 just out of the locker room and the Crusaders cruised from there.
Katie Emig (Farmington Hills, Mich./Birmingham Marian H.S.) led the Crusaders with 17 points and nine rebounds off of the bench, while Aimee Litka (South Bend, Ind./Saint Joseph’s H.S.) added 15 points in just 15 minutes of action. Whitney Farris (Kokomo, Ind./Kokomo H.S.) added 11 points while Lauren Kenney (Mooresville, Ind./Mooresville H.S.) grabbed eight boards. Rashida Ray (Fort Wayne, Ind./Harding H.S.) dished out eight assists for the Brown and Gold.
Valpo shot 53.6% for the game and outrebounded the Pumas 48-39 in the game. The Crusaders also had 28 assists and just 12 turnovers while forcing 19 Saint Joseph’s miscues.
“Our starting group gave up just seven points on the night,” head coach Keith Freeman said. “They played well throughout exhibition play.”
Catie Kopko led Saint Joseph’s with 20 points, as the Pumas dressed just six players in the game.
“We’re trying to develop consistency from our bench,” Freeman added. “We didn’t get sloppy tonight which can sometimes happen. This team has worked hard in practice and we need to continue that this week.”
Valparaiso will open the regular season on November 19 hosting Bowling Green. Tip-off is set for 7:05 p.m. at the ARC with all the action carried live on WVUR (95.1-FM, Valparaiso) and online at www.valpoathletics.com.