The #12 Valparaiso bowling team used a 4-1 day Saturday at the Mid-Winter Classic in Cabot, Ark. to move up into sixth place heading into the final day of action.
Through two days, the Crusaders have tallied 8,380 total pins to sit in sixth place among the 14 competing teams in the elite field. Valpo is just 135 pins outside of fifth position.
“I was very pleased with how we performed as a team today,” said Crusader head coach Stephen Anthony. “We did a nice job of working together and everyone made a strong contribution to our success today. I was pleased to see three of our players average 200 or better for the day. To have three players in the top-15 in individual scoring demonstrates the balance and consistency we had as a team and certainly was a key to our performance today.”
Valparaiso used a total team effort in the opener to down Stephen F. Austin, 985-854, as four of the Crusaders’ five bowlers broke 200, led by a 208 from Natalie Cortese (Hoffman Estates, Ill./Hoffman Estates [Central Missouri]). The Crusaders then carried that momentum into their second match of the day, defeating Alabama State 876-670 behind a high game of 197 by Krysytna Johnson (Montgomery, Ill./Oswego East [Delaware State]).
Valpo followed with a tight match against #2 Maryland Eastern Shore, but came out on the short end of a 1000-955 score despite a 235 by Johnson. The Crusaders rebounded, however, getting a 244 by Amanda Cortese (Hoffman Estates, Ill./Hoffman Estates [Central Missouri]) and a 201 by Jessica Guertin (Milford, Mich./Milford [Fairleigh Dickinson]), to defeat #7 Central Missouri 956-926. Valpo closed the day with a solid 1044-911 win over Prairie View A&M, as four of its five bowlers broke 200, led by Johnson’s 236.
”I was particularly pleased with how consistently we bowled today and how strong we finished the day,” said Anthony. “It would have been easy for us to lose our composure or focus in our last match, but to post our highest score in the fifth match was quite an accomplishment. We were able to move up in the standings and we look forward to the opportunity to close out the tournament with another strong effort.”
Valparaiso (33-25) concludes action at the Mid-Winter Classic on Sunday morning as the Crusaders hit the lanes beginning at 8 a.m.