Valpo Hosts Wisconsin Lutheran Saturday In Home Opener
Wednesday, September 1, 2004

WHEN: Saturday, Sept. 4 - 1 p.m. CST
WHERE: Brown Field, Valparaiso, Indiana

TV: (tape-delay) - Channel 43 in Valparaiso. Airs on Thursday, Sept. 9 at 7 p.m. - Dick Harlan and Bill Koch announcing.

RADIO: 95.1 (WVUR-FM) - Andrew Stem and Jesse Shale announcing.Webcast at

THE COACHES: Valparaiso is guided by Tom Horne, who is 62-96-1 in his 16th season at Valpo. Wisconsin Lutheran is led by Dennis Miller, who is 15-24 in his 6th season at Wisconsin Lutheran.

SERIES RECORD: Valpo leads 1-0
LAST MEETING: 2003 - Valpo won 33-13

LAST WEEK: Valpo lost to North Dakota State 52-0 last Saturday in Fargo, N.D. Wisconsin Lutheran is playing its season opener Saturday against Valpo.

The Crusaders begin a six-game home slate on Saturday by hosting Wisconsin Lutheran at 1 p.m. Valpo (0-1) is looking to rebound from its season-opening loss at North Dakota State last Saturday.

The game is the second in the series between the schools as the Crusaders earned their first of eight victories last season, defeating the Warriors 33-13. Valpo outscored Wisconsin Lutheran 17-0 in the fourth quarter after leading by three at the end of the third quarter. Nick Reid, now a senior, rushed for 130 yards and one touchdown on 16 carries. Rob Giancola caught a 60-yard touchdown pass early in the fourth quarter and Reid followed with a 25-yard scoring scamper to break the contest open. Kevin Knutson made seven receptions for 98 yards for the Crusaders.

VALPO RANKED HIGH IN PRESEASON POLLS: Valpo is ranked among the elite programs in the NCAA I-AA Mid-Major preseason polls. The Crusaders, coming off a PFL Championship season, are tabbed 3rd in the Football Gazette poll and 6th in The Sports Network poll.

GIANCOLA NEARS TWO MORE ALL-TIME RECORDS: Already the holder of nine Valpo records, wide receiver Rob Giancola is nearing two longstanding all-time school marks. With 3,112 receiving yards, the senior from Whiting, Ind./HS needs 101 more to become Valpo's all-time leader, surpassing Mike Healey's (1982-85) 19-year-old mark of 3,212. Giancola, who caught a national-high 23 touchdown passes a year ago and holds Valpo's all-time record with 36, is closing in on Valpo's all-time scoring mark. With 218 career points, Giancola needs 17 to eclipse the 53-year-old record of 234 held by Joe Pahr (1949-51).

HLADY, DANIELS, STURMAN, RIKER RECEIVE ALL-STAR HONORS: Despite the loss to North Dakota State, four Crusaders were accorded All-Star honors by Josh Buchanan's NCAA I-AA web site. Steven Hlady, Valpo's starting center from Montague, Mich./HS, had a solid game against the Bison. Chris Daniels, a senior cornerback from Peoria, Ill./Notre Dame, broke up one pass and made three tackles. Brandon Sturman, a junior middle linebacker from Brookeville, Md./Sherwood, made one interception (16 yards), one sack (8 yards) and two tackles for loss. James Riker, a sophomore defensive end from Tekonsha, Mich.HS, produced one sack (7 yards). Buchanan's web site chronicles all NCAA I-AA teams and recognizes a full all-star squad each week.

INSIDE VU FOOTBALL, head coach Tom Horne's TV show, airs every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:30 p.m. on Channel 43 in Valparaiso. This week's player guest is senior wide receiver Patrick Cash.

NEXT GAME: Valpo will host Austin Peay next Saturday, Sept. 11 beginning at noon.