Valparaiso (0-5, 0-0 Horizon)
at Florida International (0-4, 0-0 C-USA)
Game #6 - Friday, November 29 - 5:00 p.m.
U.S. Century Bank Arena (5,000) - Miami, Fla.
Next Up in Crusader Basketball: The Crusaders begin play in the Florida International University Thanksgiving Classic Friday evening in Miami. Depending on its result versus the hometown Golden Panthers, Valpo will face either Villanova or Montana State Sunday afternoon. This is the Brown and Gold’s first trip to the Sunshine State since 2007.
Last Time Out: Valpo assembled its best 40-minute effort of the season Sunday versus Tennessee Tech, but left Cookeville without a win to show for it. The 84-78 loss at the Eblen Center yielded numerous career highs for the Crusaders, but a 51-point second half for the Golden Eagles allowed the home team to overcome a five-point halftime deficit. Tennessee Tech finished the game on a 10-0 run while the Brown and Gold scored their last points of the tilt with 2:08 to play.
Following the Crusaders: Audio - WVUR (95.1 FM, Valparaiso) - Joey Basil (play-by-play) and Renee Turpa (color).
Links for the audio, video, as well as live stats will be available at ValpoAthletics.com. In addition, ValpoGameday.com is a one-stop shop for live video, stats and social media interaction, all on the same page.
Head Coach Tracey Dorow: Tracey Dorow (11-25) is in her second season at the helm of the Valparaiso women’s basketball program in 2013-14. In her first season, Dorow led the Crusaders to eleven victories overall, including five in Horizon League play. Dorow arrived in Valparaiso after 14 seasons at Ferris State. She compiled a 232-163 record while with the Bulldogs. Furthermore, Ferris State posted the #1 grade point average in all of Division II for the 1999-2000 women’s basketball season as well as the #2 ranking in 2002-2003.
Series Notes: It’s been nearly 20 years since these two teams last met on the court. Florida International won the only contest in a 104-51 rout on December 20th, 1993. The last time Valpo faced a Florida team was on December 30th, 2008 when the Crusaders defeated North Florida 58-49 at the Christmas City Classic in Bethelem, Pennsylvania.
- The good news is one team will win its first game of the season Friday.
- The bad news is the other team will still be in search of its first victory of 2013-14.
- The Crusaders will face arguably the best player they will see all season in FIU guard Jerica Coley.
- Friday’s tilt features two of the better free-throw shooting teams in the country. Valpo is ranked 10th (79.6%), while FIU comes in at 22nd (77.5%).
- For the first time this season, the Crusaders will play the first of two games within 48 hours of each other.
...looking back at last year
- @ValpoWBB.wrapped up 2012-13 with nine wins at the Athletics-Recreation Center.
- @ValpoWBB defeated Milwaukee and IPFW for their two road wins.
- @ValpoWBB boasted Second Team All-Horizon League player Tabitha Gerardot. Gerardot aveaged 15.5 points/game and 9.2 rebounds per game.
- @FIUWBasketball is in its first season in Conference USA after spending the last 15 seasons in the Sun Belt Conference.
- In their last game, @FIUWBasketball lost 89-69 on the road to Boston College.
- The @FIUWBasketball offense begins - and ends - with senior guard Jerica Coley.
- Coley is a two-time AP All-American.
- She leads the nation with an average of 26 shots per game.
- Coley’s 25.5 points per game rate ranks her 9th in the country.
- Coley accounts for 42.1% of the Panthers’ points - and 47.1% of their shots.
- She entered her senior season already second in FIU history in career scoring with 2,135 points.
- Cindy Russo is in her 34th year as head coach at Florida International.
- Russo is the 9th-winningest active coach in Division I women’s basketball with a record of 689-364.
- From 1981-2003, the Panthers boasted 22 consecutive winning seasons under Russo.
- Is the Crusaders’ leading scorer with 55 points (11.0 PPG).
- Has made at least two field goals in every game so far in 2013-14.
- Enters Friday’s contest on a four-game steal streak.
- Boasts an 88.9% FT percentage, which is tied for 2nd in the Horizon League.
- Registered a career-high 17 points at Tennessee Tech on Nov. 24th, 2013.
- Scored first collegiate points at historic Cameron Indoor Stadium last November.
- Made collegiate debut on November 14th versus Purdue-Calumet.
- Tossed in 11 points versus Western Michigan in 19 minutes last December.
- Scored a career-high 18 points in Valpo’s last game vs. Tennessee Tech.
- Has registered more assists than turnovers (12:10)
- Tied for team lead in steals (8).
- Accumulated 15 points, four rebounds, four assists, and three steals (all career highs at the time) at Saint Louis on Nov. 10th, 2013.
- Made collegiate debut against the Indiana Hoosiers Nov, 9th, 2012.
- Made first start in Hinkle Fieldhouse versus the Butler Bulldogs.
- Scored 13 points in Valpo’s 88-62 victory over UIC on Feb. 16th, 2013.
- Tied for second in the Horizon League in FT percentage (88.9%).
- Dished out a season-high seven assists at Tennessee Tech.
- Has been perfect from the line in four of five games already this season (minimum 3 attempts).
- Scored 15 points in the season opener at Saint Louis on Nov. 10th, 2013.
- Played in all 31 games for the Crusaders last season, including 28 starts.
- Carried an 84.1 free-throw percentage.
- Scored 18 points at UIC on Jan. 19th, 2013.
- Finished second on the team last season in three-pointers (24) and assists (95).
- Second on the team in field goal percentage (41.4%)
- Scored 11 points off the bench in back-to-back games versus Illinois and #6 Notre Dame.
- Averaging 8.3 points in 17 minutes/game.
- Appeared in 30 games for the Brown and Gold a season ago.
- Named Crusaders’ Most Improved Player in 2012-13.
- Scored 19 points, including 3-for-3 shooting from behind the arc, at Western Michigan on Dec. 19th.
- Tallied her second double-double at Tennessee Tech, scoring 11 points and collecting 10 rebounds.
- Recorded her first double-double at Illinois on Nov. 12th, throwing in 15 points and grabbing 12 boards.
- Leads team in rebounds (36) and fouls (16).
- At 6’2’’, Karungi is tallest player on the Valpo roster.
- Notched a career-high 14 points on 5-of-13 shooting at Tennessee Tech Sunday.
- Leads team in blocks (4), three-pointers (8), and average minutes played (35.2).
- Her 35.2 minutes/game average is fifth-most in the Horizon League.
- Snapped a season-starting 0-14 slump from behind the arc at #6 Notre Dame, nailing three treys in a nine-point game.
- Played all 40 minutes in the season opener at Saint Louis on Nov. 10th, 2013, and set career highs in blocks (4) and steals (3) while scoring six points.
- Appeared in all 31 games including four starts as a freshman for Coach Dorow.
- Made collegiate debut versus Indiana
- Scored 13 points off the bench versus Detroit on Mar. 9th, 2013.
- Valpo welcomes six new players (two freshmen, four transfers) to its team this season.
- Haylee Thompson and Annemarie Hamlet will sit out this season per NCAA transfer eligibilty rules.
- The Brown and Gold boast players from six different states and two countries.
- Liz Horton is the only true senior on this year’s squad.