Valparaiso hung with #24/22 Green Bay
for the first 25 minutes on Saturday afternoon before the Phoenix went on a 24-2 run midway through the second half to defeat the Crusaders 78-54
in front of 3,039 fans at the
Kress Center in Green
“We really battled for 28
minutes of the ball game,” head coach Keith
Freeman said. “We played as hard as
we could. We didn’t always execute, but
we had it within three. We shot the ball
better tonight, but we didn’t handle the ball well. They had 39 points off of turnovers.”
H.S.) led the Crusaders with 17 points off of the bench, including an 8-for-8
performance from the free throw line.
She was Valpo’s only player in double figures.
“Raegan did a great job of
scoring for us,” Freeman added.
Valpo started off firing on
all cylinders from the floor, making 10 of its first 12 shots from the floor,
including 6-of-6 from long range.
Turnovers proved costly in the first half though, as 16 miscues led to
21 Green Bay
The Crusaders scored the
game’s first five points, and, after a Phoenix
triple, Betsy Adams (Monticello, Ind./Monticello H.S.) made it 8-5 Valpo at the 16:22 mark
with a long ball of her own.
Green Bay answered with an 8-0 run, only to be ended with
another Adams triple. Kelly
Peller (Chesterton, Ind./Chesterton
H.S.) made Valpo’s fourth straight three at the 11:48 mark to tie the game at
17 before the Phoenix
went on another 10-0 spurt.
A 7-1 Valpo run cut the
deficit to four, 28-24, after Lauren
Kenney (Mooresville, Ind./Mooresville
H.S.) scored inside, but Green Bay
again answered, pushing the lead back to nine, 33-24.
The Crusaders did not make a
field goal the final 5:10 of the first half, but made all six free throws to
cut the deficit to 40-33 at the break.
Valpo shot 62.5% (10-of-16)
from the floor in the first half, including 6-of-8 (75%) from long range. Green
Bay connected on 14-of-24 (58.3%) from the floor in
the opening 20 minutes.
The Crusaders came out of the
locker room and immediately cut into the lead.
Kenney drained a jumper from 16 feet and followed with a lay-in, cutting
lead to 46-43 with 16 minutes to play.
by Heather Golden and Hannah Quilling keyed 16 straight points by Green Bay as Valpo went
more than five minutes without scoring, falling behind 62-43 with just under 10
The run continued, extending
to 24-2 as Valpo managed just one field goal over 12:30, with the Phoenix building a 70-45 lead with just under five minutes
to play, as Green Bay
won its 30th consecutive regular season Horizon League game.
“Playing a team with so many
weapons like Green Bay
has and their home court advantage with 3,000 fans, it is a difficult
environment to play in,” concluded Freeman.
After the sizzling first
half, Valpo shot just 27.8% from the floor in the second stanza to finish the
game shooting 44.1%. The Crusaders committed
26 turnovers and were outrebounded 33-23.
Adams finished with nine points while Kenney had eight
points and a game-high eight boards.
Julie Wojta led Green Bay (18-2, 7-2
Horizon) with 14 points and seven rebounds while Kayla Tetschlag and Celeste Hoewisch
added 12 points each. Sarah Eichler
added 11 points as six Phoenix
players scored at least eight points.
The Phoenix finished the game shooting 45.5% from
the floor and 21-of-25 (84%) from the free throw line while committing just 15
Valparaiso (6-14, 3-6) will return home to the Athletics-Recreation Center
for five of its next seven games beginning next Saturday evening when the Brown
and Gold hosts instate rival Butler. Tip-off is set for 7:05 p.m.
Game Notes: Green
Bay leads the overall series 19-4 and has won four straight meetings … this was
Valpo’s third game against a ranked opponent this season … Valpo had three
blocks, giving the Crusaders 47 in 20 games, after registered just 45 all last
season in 30 games … Moore’s 17-point game was her third double figure scoring
game of the season … Kenney started
for the first time in Horizon