Angie Doerffler (Fort Wayne, Ind./Concordia Lutheran), Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) and Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) represented the Valparaiso softball team on the Horizon League Academic All-League squad for their work on the field and in the classroom during the 2012 season.
Valparaiso softball head coach Jordan Stevens announced today that three more players have committed to join the Crusader softball program beginning with the 2013 campaign. The Crusaders add a pair of junior college transfers in pitcher Ashlyn Michalak (Temperance, Mich./Springfield [Owens C.C.]) and outfielder Kimberlin Wallace (Newton, Ill./Newton Community [Lake Land C.C.]), as well as incoming freshman pitcher Sierra Pico (North Las Vegas, Nev./Legacy).
42 victories. A Horizon League regular season championship. The Horizon League tournament championship. A trip to the NCAA Tournament. All were accomplishments never before achieved by the Valparaiso softball program until the 2012 season, a campaign which saw the Crusaders reach numerous other milestones along the way.
Even facing an early five-run deficit, the Valparaiso softball team refused to say die on Saturday afternoon, scoring four runs in the fifth inning to pull within one of Kentucky. But in the end, the Crusaders couldn’t find the game-tying tally, as Valpo fell 5-4 to the Wildcats in the Louisville Regional of the 2012 NCAA Tournament, ending its historic season with a 42-19 record.
Valparaiso was within one out of springing a major upset on #9/7 Louisville to open its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance, but a two-out, three-run home run in the bottom of the seventh by Alicja Wolny sent the Crusaders to a 6-4 loss on Friday evening at Ulmer Stadium in Louisville, Ky. With the loss, Valpo will play an elimination game in the NCAA Tournament Saturday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. CDT against Kentucky, live on ESPN.
Valparaiso placed a program-record three players on the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Midwest Region teams, as announced on Wednesday morning. Redshirt sophomore Jessie Marinec (Alsip, Ill./Marist) earned First Team honors, while senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) and freshman Brittany Duncan (Fairborn, Ohio/Fairborn) both were named to the Second Team. For all three, it is their first career All-Region honor.
Saturday's game times at the Louisville Regional of the 2012 NCAA Tournament have been changed due to television programming. The three games on Saturday are now scheduled for 2 p.m., 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. CDT, and all three will be broadcast live on ESPN.
After capturing the Horizon League Championship last weekend, Valparaiso embarks on its first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament this weekend. The Crusaders will kick off the tournament at the Louisville Regional against the 15th seed nationally, #7/9 Louisville, at 6 p.m. CDT on Friday on ESPN2. The other two teams in the double-elimination regional are #21/19 Michigan and #-/RV Kentucky. Every game of the regional will be either on ESPN2 or ESPN.
Valparaiso softball’s first-ever NCAA trip will take place in Louisville, Ky., as the Crusaders learned Sunday evening that they had been placed in the Louisville Regional of the 2012 NCAA Softball Tournament. Valpo will open regional play against the host Cardinals, the 15th seed nationally, at 6 p.m. CDT on Friday, May 18, a game which will be televised live nationwide on ESPN2.
The Valparaiso softball team will be going to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history after winning a pair of games over Loyola on its home field Saturday afternoon to capture the 2012 Horizon League Championship, both coming by 2-1 scores and both thanks to walk-off game-winning hits by tournament MVP Angie Doerffler (Fort Wayne, Ind./Concordia Lutheran).
It took extra innings on Friday afternoon, but Valparaiso loaded the bases in the bottom of the eighth with nobody out and pinch-runner Hayley Bridwell (Lemont, Ill./Lemont Township) scored the walk-off run on a Butler error to give the Crusaders a 4-3 victory over the Bulldogs in an elimination game at the 2012 Horizon League Championship. With the win, Valpo advances to Championship Saturday at the league tournament and will take on Loyola at noon. The Crusaders will have to win two games in order to capture the tournament title.
A 10-hit attack which included three home runs was more than enough for Valparaiso to advance in the 2012 Horizon League Softball Championship Friday morning at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, as the Crusaders also got a two-hit effort in the circle from Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) in a 10-0 victory in six innings over Youngstown State in an elimination game. Valpo advances to face either Butler or Loyola in another elimination game at 4 p.m. on Friday.
Valparaiso senior pitcher Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) was stellar in a two-hit effort in the circle, matching Valpo’s individual single-season wins record, while the Crusaders’ offense gave her three early runs to work with as Valpo remained alive in the 2012 Horizon League Softball Championship with a 3-0 victory over UIC Thursday evening.
Top-seeded Valparaiso dropped its opening game at the 2012 Horizon League Softball Championship Thursday morning at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, falling to fifth-seeded Butler, 6-1. With the loss, the Crusaders fall into the loser’s bracket and will play again Thursday evening at 6:30 p.m. against third-seeded UIC in an elimination game.
Top-seeded Valparaiso will open its action at the 2012 Horizon League Championship on Thursday morning by taking on fifth-seeded Butler at 11 a.m. at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso freshman designated player Brittany Duncan was named the Horizon League Newcomer of the Year and was joined on the All-League First Team by seniors Joylyn Ichiyama-Drewry, Alex Lagesse and Jordan Rutkowski, while redshirt sophomore Jessie Marinec was a Second Team selection as the league released its postseason awards on Tuesday.
For the first time in program history, the Valparaiso softball team will host the Horizon League Championship on campus beginning on Wednesday morning, May 9. The Crusaders, who earned hosting rights by capturing the outright league regular season title, will play their first game on Thursday morning, May 10 at 11 a.m. against the winner of fourth-seeded Youngstown State and fifth-seeded Butler.
For the second time this season, Valparaiso freshman Brittany Duncan (Fairborn, Ohio/Fairborn) has been named the Horizon League Player of the Week. Duncan bookends the regular season with league weekly honors, as she was previously named Player of the Week after the first week of play.
The Valparaiso softball team closed out the 2012 regular season on a high note on Saturday afternoon, sweeping a doubleheader at Cleveland State by scores of 6-4 and 13-1 (6 innings) to finish out the regular season at 37-16 overall and 19-5 in Horizon League play. The regular season champion Crusaders set a new single-season record for victories with the win in the opener.
The Valparaiso softball program earned the outright Horizon League regular season championship on Friday evening, thanks to a 7-0 victory at Cleveland State. The outright title means that Valpo also earns hosting rights for the 2012 Horizon League Championship next Wednesday-Saturday at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, with the tournament champion earning the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament. The victory on Friday also marked the 35th of the 2012 season for the Crusaders, matching the program’s single-season wins record.
Valparaiso closed out the non-league portion of the regular season, as well as the home slate at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, with a sweep of a doubleheader from Western Michigan on Wednesday afternoon, defeating the Broncos 2-0 in the opener and 3-2 in the nightcap.
Valparaiso closes the regular season this week with a chance to secure the outright Horizon League title with a three-game series at Cleveland State. The Crusaders have already clinched at least a share of the regular season championship, and need to win just one of three against the Vikings for the outright title. The home slate concludes earlier in the week as Valpo hosts Western Michigan for a non-league twinbill on Wednesday afternoon.
Senior Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) struck out a career-high 11 batters in a three-hit gem, while senior Sara Strickland (Scottsdale, Ariz./Horizon) delivered the big blow with a two-out, two-run double in the fifth as Valparaiso earned a victory on Senior Day at the Valparaiso University Softball Field with a 2-0 win over Loyola. The win, combined with results later in the afternoon, guaranteed the Crusaders at least a share of the Horizon League regular season title with one weekend of play left, the program’s first-ever league title.
The Valparaiso softball team scrounged up just five hits on Saturday in dropping a Horizon League doubleheader to Loyola by scores of 3-2 (8 innings) and 4-1 at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso’s attempt to sweep a three-game series from Butler was thwarted in the series finale on Thursday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, as the Bulldogs scored three times over the fifth and sixth innings to send the Crusaders to a 5-4 defeat.
The Valparaiso softball team got back on the winning track Wednesday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, dispatching of Horizon League foe Butler 9-1 in just five innings in the first game of the doubleheader before earning a 5-1 victory in the nightcap.
The Valparaiso softball program will be hosting a pair of softball camps this summer. The Crusaders will host a camp for youths ages 13 and up on June 18-20, and will host another camp for children ages 12 and under on July 16-18. Both camps will be held on the Valpo campus at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso faces a key week of Horizon League play as it looks to secure its spot atop the league standings. The Crusaders host a three-game series against Butler in mid-week action from the Valparaiso University Softball Field before welcoming second-place Loyola to Valpo for three games this weekend. Sunday’s series finale against the Ramblers will be Senior Day for the Crusaders, as they honor a group of seven players in their final season with the Valpo softball program.
A scoreless duel which stretched into extra frames wouldn’t end in Valparaiso’s favor Sunday, as UIC earned a walk-off, 1-0 win in nine innings in Chicago, Ill. in the finale of the three-game series.
Valparaiso pushed four runs across the plate in the eighth inning of the opener at UIC Saturday afternoon to earn a 7-3 victory and push its winning streak to open Horizon League play to 13 games, but the Flames got a two-out grand slam in the sixth inning of the nightcap to send the Crusaders to a 5-3 defeat and split the doubleheader.
Valparaiso saw its 11-game winning streak come to an end on Wednesday afternoon, as the Crusaders couldn’t overcome an early six-run deficit to a 6-3 loss at Notre Dame.
Valparaiso has four road games on the docket this week, none of which require a long trip away from its Northwest Indiana campus. The Crusaders, who have won 11 straight contests, will travel east on the Toll Road to take on Notre Dame in a single game Wednesday afternoon before heading up to Chicago for a three-game Horizon League series against UIC this weekend as they attempt to remain unbeaten in league action.
Valparaiso senior pitcher Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) has been named the Horizon League Pitcher of the Week after tossing a pair of shutouts last week and setting the Crusader career record for victories.
Senior Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) scattered six hits in a complete-game shutout to set the Crusader career record for wins by a pitcher, while Valparaiso used a five-run third inning offensively to propel itself to a 7-0 victory over Youngstown State Sunday at the Valparaiso University Softball Field. The win concluded a three-game sweep of the Penguins, extended the Crusaders' winning streak to 11 straight games and improved Valpo's Horizon League record to 12-0.
Trailing by 12 runs after two innings of the nightcap Saturday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, Valparaiso stormed back with 13 straight runs, capped by a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh from Jessie Marinec (Alsip, Ill./Marist), to set a program record for the largest come-from-behind victory as it earned a 13-12 win over Youngstown State. The comeback win closed out a doubleheader sweep as Valpo also captured game one, 4-3.
Staring a four-run deficit in the face with its perfect record in Horizon League play on the line, Valparaiso stormed from behind with a five-run fifth inning to claim the lead and added an insurance run in the sixth to complete a three-game sweep of Wright State, 8-6, in Fairborn, Ohio on Thursday afternoon. The Crusaders have now won 13 of their last 14 games.
Valparaiso ran its Horizon League record to 8-0 on Wednesday afternoon, sweeping a mid-week doubleheader at Wright State by scores of 4-2 and 10-0 (6 inn.) in Fairborn, Ohio. Senior Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson) matched the Crusaders’ career wins record by earning the victory in the nightcap.
Valparaiso senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) has been selected as one of 25 finalists nationwide for the 2012 USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year honor, as awarded by the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America.
Valparaiso returns to Horizon League play this week with a pair of three-game league series, hitting the road to take on Wright State in mid-week action before returning home to host Youngstown State this weekend.
Valparaiso got a pair of shutouts in the circle from seniors Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) and Sam McGee (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson), while redshirt sophomore Jessie Marinec (Alsip, Ill./Marist) led the offensive attack with a five-hit day as the Crusaders swept a doubleheader from Bowling Green, 4-0 and 5-0, Wednesday afternoon in Bowling Green, Ohio.
Valparaiso has a light schedule on the docket this week, as the Crusaders play just a single doubleheader, stepping out of league play for a twinbill at Bowling Green on Wednesday afternoon.
Valparaiso senior catcher Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) has been named the Horizon League’s co-Player of the Week after breaking the Crusaders’ single-season RBIs record and matching the program’s single-season home runs mark in the midst of another impressive week. It marks Rutkowski’s third weekly honor from the league office this year, matching the most weekly awards to a position player in a single season in Horizon League history.
For the first time this season, Valparaiso put together a late-game rally to earn a come-from-behind victory, scoring four runs in the bottom of the sixth to overcome a three-run deficit and defeat Green Bay, 4-3, Sunday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, completing a three-game Horizon League series sweep of the Phoenix.
Valparaiso got stellar performances in all facets of the game on Saturday afternoon in sweeping a Horizon League doubleheader from Green Bay, 8-0 and 17-0, at the Valparaiso University Softball Field. The opener ended via run rule on a record-tying home run from senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden), while the nightcap was highlighted by a 12-run fourth inning for the Crusaders.
A three-run home run by senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) gave Valparaiso the lead over Purdue in the third inning, but the Boilermakers answered with two runs in the fourth and the Crusaders were unable to push across the tying run as Purdue claimed a 4-3 victory over Valpo Thursday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso comes home for four games in the friendly confines this week, as the Crusaders host Purdue in non-league action on Thursday afternoon before welcoming Green Bay for a three-game Horizon League set this weekend.
Valparaiso senior pitcher Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) faced just one batter over the minimum, while the Crusader offense scored multiple runs in four out of five innings as Valpo completed a sweep of the opening weekend of Horizon League play with a 9-1 run-rule victory over Detroit Sunday afternoon in Detroit, Mich.
Valparaiso got off to a 2-0 start in Horizon League play on Saturday afternoon, earning a pair of victories over host Detroit by scores of 7-2 and 12-3.
Playing under sunny skies and record-high temperatures for the earliest home opener in program history, the Valparaiso softball team easily captured a doubleheader sweep of visiting IUPUI, earning wins by scores of 8-1 and 7-1 Tuesday afternoon at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso returns to the Midwest this week with its earliest home opener in program history, hosting a doubleheader on-campus at the Valparaiso University Softball Field on Tuesday against IUPUI at 3 p.m. The Crusaders then open the Horizon League slate this weekend with a three-game series over two days at Detroit.
Continued inclement weather in the San Diego area has forced Valpo softball's scheduled game against UNLV on Sunday to be canceled. The Crusaders will return home from their spring break trip for their home opener on Tuesday, a doubleheader against IUPUI beginning at 3 p.m. at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Mother Nature apparently didn't get the memo that the Valparaiso softball team was closing out spring break in San Diego, Calif., as despite record-high temperatures and abundant sunshine back in Valpo, rain in the San Diego area forced the cancellation of the entire slate of games on Saturday at the San Diego Classic II, including the Crusaders' scheduled matchups with San Diego State and Long Beach State.
The Valparaiso softball team split a pair of games to open the San Diego Classic II on Friday, defeating CSU Bakersfield 10-2 in six innings via run rule before dropping a 1-0 decision to the University of San Diego.
Valparaiso closes its spring break trip as it attempts to get back on the winning track this weekend at the San Diego Classic II, co-hosted by San Diego State and the University of San Diego. The Crusaders will play both host schools, as well as CSU Bakersfield, Long Beach State and UNLV over the three-day span.
Redshirt sophomore middle infielder Jessie Marinec (Alsip, Ill./Marist) was named the Horizon League Player of the Week for the second time in her career Tuesday after matching her career home run total last week with four round-trippers.
Valparaiso failed to end the Diamond Devil Invitational on a winning note on Sunday morning, losing to East Carolina by a 5-3 score.
The Valparaiso softball team dropped a pair of games at the Diamond Devil Invitational in Tempe, Ariz. on Saturday, falling to Creighton in eight innings, 3-1, before coming out on the wrong end of a 7-2 decision against a Pacific squad receiving votes in the national top-25 poll.
For the first time all season, the Valparaiso softball team lost back-to-back games, dropping both of its contests at the opening day of the Diamond Devil Invitational in Tempe, Ariz. The Crusaders lost their opener against New Mexico State, 8-5, and battled the defending College World Series champions, #5 Arizona State, before eventually falling, 6-2.
Valparaiso continues its annual spring break trip as it kicks off the Diamond Devil Classic in Tempe, Ariz. with its second straight game against New Mexico State on Friday. The Crusaders will also take on host #5 Arizona State on Friday evening, and will face Creighton, Pacific and East Carolina over the duration of this weekend’s tournament.
The Valparaiso softball team continued its strong start to the 2012 campaign as it continued its spring break trip with a 9-1 victory over New Mexico State Tuesday evening in Las Cruces, N.M.
Senior catcher Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) has repeated as the Horizon League Player of the Week after breaking Valpo’s career home run record last weekend in the midst of yet another spectacular weekend at the plate, hitting .714 over the Crusaders’ four games at the UTEP Invitational.
Valparaiso led by a run with just one out needed to close out what would have been its seventh straight win, but the Crusaders surrendered a grand slam and then couldn’t push across the tying and go-ahead runs in the bottom of the seventh as they dropped a 7-6 decision at UTEP Sunday in the finale of the UTEP Invitational in El Paso, Texas.
The Valparaiso softball team continued the best start in program history and extended its winning streak to six straight games with a pair of victories Saturday at the UTEP Invitational in El Paso, Texas. The Crusaders opened the day with a 10-2 run-rule win over Brown before defeating UTSA in the nightcap, 10-6.
Valparaiso earned its second victory of the season over Iowa State on Friday afternoon by putting together one of the best offensive outputs in program history, downing the Cyclones 16-7 in its opener at the UTEP Invitational in El Paso, Texas.
Valparaiso looks to continue its strong start to the 2012 season at the UTEP Invitational in El Paso, Texas this weekend. The four-game, three-day event sees the Crusaders face off against Iowa State, Brown and UTSA in addition to the host.
Valparaiso softball senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) has been named the Horizon League Player of the Week after enjoying an outstanding weekend at the plate last weekend at the Frost Classic.
Valparaiso never trailed on Sunday in a 4-2 victory over Belmont in Chattanooga, Tenn., closing out the Frost Classic with three consecutive wins to end the tournament with a 4-1 record.
Led by a three-home run day from senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden), the Valparaiso softball team put up 17 runs in two victories Saturday at the Frost Classic in Chattanooga, Tenn., defeating UT-Martin 8-4 before beating Niagara via run rule in five innings, 9-1.
The Valparaiso softball team split a pair of games on the opening day of action at the Frost Classic in Chattanooga, Tenn., defeating East Tennessee State in eight innings, 4-2, before falling to host UT-Chattanooga, 7-0.
After a weekend off, Valparaiso resumes the 2012 slate this weekend at the Frost Classic, hosted by UT-Chattanooga. The Crusaders will also take on East Tennessee State, UT-Martin, Niagara and Belmont over the course of the three-day tournament.
After helping Valparaiso to a 3-1 opening weekend at the Ramada Inn Classic in Ames, Iowa, freshman Brittany Duncan (Fairborn, Ohio/Fairborn) and senior Alex Lagesse (Beecher, Ill./Beecher) have been named Horizon League Batter and Pitcher of the Week, respectively.
The Valparaiso softball team closed out the Ramada Inn UNI Dome Classic on a three-game winning streak, as the Crusaders defeated Drake on Sunday afternoon, 5-3, in Ames, Iowa.
Valparaiso earned a pair of victories Saturday at the Ramada Inn UNI Dome Classic in Ames, Iowa, using a stellar pitching performance to down Nebraska-Omaha 6-0 before breaking out the bats for an 11-5 victory over Big 12 foe Iowa State in the nightcap.
The Valparaiso softball team opened the 2012 season Friday evening, but couldn’t come out of the night with a victory, falling to UNI 6-0 in the opener of the Ramada Inn UNI Dome Tournament in Ames, Iowa. The tournament was originally scheduled to be hosted by UNI, but the entirety of the tournament has been moved to Iowa State due to equipment failure at the UNI Dome.
Originally scheduled to be held at UNI, softball's season-opening weekend at the UNI Ramada Dome Tournament has been moved to Ames, Iowa on the campus of Iowa State. In addition, the Crusaders' opener Friday evening against UNI will start one hour earlier, at 6 p.m.
Last season saw the Valparaiso softball team finish just one-half game out of the Horizon League regular season championship and advance to the final day of the league tournament for the second consecutive year. With 15 out of 18 letterwinners back from last year’s team, the 2012 iteration of the Crusaders enters this season with their eyes set at the top of the Horizon League standings.
The Valparaiso University softball team has been picked to finish in fourth place in the Horizon League standings for the 2012 season in preseason polling by the league’s head coaches.
The Valparaiso softball program will be holding a number of clinics this winter. The Crusaders host a holiday clinic on Sunday, Dec. 18, 2011 at the Athletics-Recreation Center for youths from 8th-12th grades. On Sunday, Jan. 29, Valpo will host hitting and pitching clinics for youths ages 8-18. Then Sunday, Feb. 19 marks the end of the winter camp season when high school students are invited to experience the Valparaiso Crusader advanced clinic.
Valparaiso softball head coach Jordan Stevens announced today that six athletes have signed National Letters of Intent during the early signing period and will join the Crusader softball program starting in the fall of 2012.
Eight Valparaiso softball players were named National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-America Scholar Athletes for their performance in the classroom during the 2010-2011 academic year.
The Valparaiso softball team has been named an All-Academic Team by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA), as announced by the organization today.
The Valparaiso softball program will be hosting an alumni event, including a softball game and a cookout, on the Saturday of Homecoming Weekend, Oct. 1.
A trip through the Southwest for the first time in program history highlights the early-season schedule, and Valparaiso will also host 17 home games this season as Valpo head coach Jordan Stevens announced today the Crusaders’ 2012 softball schedule.
Valparaiso softball head coach Jordan Stevens and the Crusader softball program will be hosting a one-day fall softball camp on Saturday, September 17 from 9:00 a.m.-6:30 p.m. The camp, open to athletes in grades 9-12, is a new and exciting style of camp designed to provide athletes a close-up look as to what a typical day in the life of a college athlete is like, with a focus on the softball aspects.
The Valparaiso University softball program will be holding walk-on tryouts on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2011 from 3-5 p.m. at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.
Valparaiso softball head coach Jordan Stevens announced today that Leslie Malerich, who pitched Merrillville H.S. to the 1997 IHSAA state title and went on to play for the Italian national team, most notably in the 2004 Olympics, has joined the Crusader coaching staff as an assistant coach. Stevens also announced that former Crusader KC Boldt will return as a graduate assistant as well.