Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Begins Three-Game Road Stretch At Western Illinois

Friday, January 30, 2004

VALPO (9-9, 6-3 Mid-Con) at WESTERN ILLINOIS (3-17, 1-7 Mid-Con)

WHEN: Saturday, Jan. 31 - 8 p.m. CST

WHERE: Western Hall, Macomb, Illinois

RADIO: WEFM (95.9, Michigan City), WVUR-FM (95.1, Valparaiso) - Todd Ickow and Andy Viano announcing.

TV: none

THE COACHES: Valparaiso is guided by Homer Drew, who has a career record of 514-315 in his 27th season and a record at Valpo of 245-193 in his 15th season. Western Illinois is led by Derek Thomas, who has a career mark of 3-17 in his 1st season and a record at WIU of 3-17 in his 1st season.

SERIES RECORD: Valpo leads 27-24
LAST MEETING: Jan. 17, 2004 - Valpo won 73-57 at Valpo

LAST GAME: Valpo defeated Oakland 77-72 on Thursday in Valparaiso. Western Illinois lost to Centenary on Thursday in Macomb, Illinois.

NEXT UP: Valpo travels to play at Centenary on Thursday at 7:05 p.m.

Riding a five-game win streak, Valpo (9-9, 6-3 Mid-Con) begins a three-game road stretch by traveling to Western Illinois (3-17, 1-7) for an 8 p.m. Saturday matchup. The contest marks the second meeting between the Crusaders and Leathernecks as Valpo won the earlier game 73-57 in Valparaiso on Jan. 17. The Crusaders are coming off a 77-72 victory over Oakland on Thursday. Kikas Gomes and Roberto Nieves led Valpo with 16 points each. Western Illinois lost 75-72 to Centenary on Thursday in Macomb, Illinois.

DUSTING OFF THE OLDIES: On Thursday, senior Greg Tonagel played his first game of the season. Tonagel, who was granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA, played 17 minutes, scoring five points and converting two free throws with 10 seconds left to secure the win over Oakland. The 6'3" guard was pressed into service due to several injuries to Valpo's backcourt.

BERDIEL 11th NATIONALLY IN ASSISTS: Ali Berdiel ranks 11th in the nation in assists through games of Jan. 26, according to the NCAA statistics. Through games of Jan. 30 , Berdiel ranks 2nd in the Mid-Con in assists with 6.61 per game (119 in 18 games) and 5th in steals (1.9 pg.).In the last six games, Berdiel has provided solid numbers in several areas. The 6'6" junior has averaged 16.5 ppg., 8.3 assists and 3.3 rpg. during the stretch.

DAN OPPLAND PLAYING AT HIGH LEVEL: Sophomore Dan Oppland has been the model of consistency. The 6'8" forward, who leads the team in scoring (14.7 ppg.), has tallied double-figure points in 17 of the 18 games and grabbed twin-digit rebounds three times. He has been particularly impressive in Mid-Con games, averaging 16.7 ppg. and shooting .571 from the field. Oppland stands 2nd overall in the Mid-Con in offensive rebounding (3.17 pg.), 4th in field goal percentage (.547), 7th in rebounding (6.7 pg.) and 10th in free throw percentage (.794).

GOMES LEADS MID-CON IN REBOUNDS, BLOCKED SHOTS; STANDS 15th NATIONALLY IN BOARDS: Kikas Gomes ranks 15th among all NCAA Divsion I players in rebounding through games of Jan. 26. Gomes, who has nine double-doubles on the season, leads the Mid-Con in both rebounding (9.7 pg.) and blocked shots (2.0 pg., 36 in 18 games) through Jan. 30. Gomes has blocked 14 shots over the last five games.

VALPO LEADS MID-CON IN TWO DEFENSIVE CATEGORIES: The Crusaders have played solid defense this season as evidenced by their leadership of two Mid-Con categories. Valpo tops the league in field goal percentage defense (.415) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (.307).

Softball Northern Illinois 6 VU Softball Field
Apr 8 Valpo 8
Baseball Valpo 5 Evanston, Ill.
Apr 8 Northwestern 12
Softball Northern Illinois 3 8 inn.
Apr 8 Valpo 4
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 5th/17 (20)
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 11 9th/18 (12)
M Tennis Valpo 5 Detroit, Mich.
Apr 11 Detroit 2
Baseball Youngstown State 7 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 11 Valpo 10
W Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (60.50)
M Track Chicagoland Championships Romeoville, Ill.
Apr 12 6th/20 (48)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 12 t-7th/13 (588)
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 12 3rd/6 (335); 4th/6 (350)
M Soccer St. Joseph's College Eastgate Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo
Baseball Youngstown State 1 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo 13
Softball Cleveland State 3 VU Softball Field
Apr 12, 10:00 a.m. Valpo 2
Volleyball Western Michigan/Butler/Eastern Michigan ARC
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo
Softball Cleveland State 4 VU Softball Field
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo 6
Baseball Youngstown State 12 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Valpo 4
W Tennis Valpo 1 Detroit, Mich.
Apr 12, 1:45 p.m. Detroit 6
M Soccer Benedictine Brown Field
Apr 12, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
W Soccer Haitian National Team Brown Field
Apr 12, 7:00 p.m. Valpo
W Golf Crusader/Jaguar Challenge Valparaiso, Ind. (The Course at Aberdeen)
Apr 13 2nd/6 (657); 5th/6 (692)
M Golf Bluegrass Invitational Lexington, Ky. (University Club Big Blue Course)
Apr 13 t-6th/13 (895)
Softball Cleveland State 6 8 inn.
Apr 13 Valpo 7
W Tennis Valpo 1 Rochester, Mich.
Apr 13 Oakland 6
M Tennis Valpo 1 Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 13 #12 Notre Dame 6
W Tennis Valpo 0 Chicago, Ill.
Apr 14 Chicago State 7
M Tennis Valpo 7 Homewood, Ill.
Apr 15 Chicago State 0
Baseball Valpo CCD
Apr 15 Toledo
M Track Cougar Invitational River Forest, Ill.
Apr 17 No Team Score
W Track Cougar Invitational River Forest, Ill.
Apr 17 No Team Score
Baseball Valpo 4 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 17 Milwaukee 0
M Tennis Youngstown State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18, 11:00 a.m. Valpo
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Milwaukee
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 18, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
W Tennis Youngstown State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18, 4:00 p.m. Valpo
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19
W Tennis Cleveland State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19, 10:00 a.m. Valpo
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 19, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Valpo Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 19, 1:00 p.m. Milwaukee
Softball Oakland VU Softball Field
Apr 19, 2:00 p.m. Valpo
M Tennis Cleveland State Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19, 2:00 p.m. Valpo
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 20
Baseball Kalamazoo Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 21, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Ohio Northern Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 22, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22, 3:00 p.m. Western Illinois
Softball Valpo Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22, 5:00 p.m. Western Illinois
Softball Valpo Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24, 5:00 p.m. Notre Dame
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 25, 5:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 25, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 26 Horizon League Tournament
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 26, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 26, 12:00 p.m. Wright State
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 26, 2:00 p.m. Wright State
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 27, 2:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
M Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
Softball Valpo Dayton, Ohio
Apr 27, 12:00 p.m. Wright State
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 27, 12:00 p.m. Valpo