Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Drop Overtime Contest at Western Michigan

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Valparaiso held a six-point lead late in Saturday's game at Western Michigan, but the Broncos fought back to force overtime and went on to down the Crusaders in Kalamazoo, Mich., 89-80.

The Crusaders grabbed their largest lead of the ballgame at seven with 3:38 to play after an Urule Igbavboa (Oakdale, Minn./Tartan) 3-point play, and the advantage was still six when Igbavboa took a feed from Jake Diebler (Upper Sandusky, Ohio/Upper Sandusky) and dunked it with 2:27 left. Western Michigan answered immediately, as Joe Reitz got to the foul line for two free throws to cut the lead to four.

Diebler split a pair of foul shots on Valpo's next trip, and Shawntes Gary cut the Crusader edge to three with a pair of free throws with 1:42 left. After a Valpo turnover, Derek Fracalossi missed a 3-pointer, but the Broncos grabbed the rebound and converted it into a 3-point play to tie the game with 1:09 left. Both teams missed shots on their final possessions in regulation to send the game to overtime, Valpo's third extra session of the season.

In the extra period, Reitz scored on WMU's opening possession to give the Broncos a two-point lead. Samuel Haanpaa (Kerava, Finland/Cornerstone [Texas] Christian) split a pair of foul shots for the Crusaders, and Igbavboa drove for a layup the next time down to give Valpo a 78-77 lead. Valpo could not find the basket for the next three-and-a-half minutes, however, and the Broncos took advantage, with back-to-back buckets from Reitz giving them a 3-point edge. WMU then clinched the game from the foul line, hitting all eight of its free throw attempts in the extra session.

The first half was tight throughout, with the largest Western Michigan edge coming at 33-28 with 5:59 to go in the half. The Crusaders responded with a 10-1 spurt to gain a four-point lead. Gary cut the lead to one with 45 seconds to go in the half, but the Crusaders successfully ran down the shot clock and got a driving layup from Brandon McPherson (Indianapolis, Ind./Lawrence North) to make the lead 45-42 going into the locker room.

Igbavboa led the Crusaders with a career-high 21 points, hitting nine of his 10 free throw attempts. Igbavboa also pulled down a team-high nine rebounds in 36 minutes before fouling out in the overtime period. Haanpaa added 19 points off the bench, nailing four of his six 3-point tries, while Jarryd Loyd (Lincolnwood, Ill./Niles West) chipped in 14 points, five rebounds, and four assists while committing just one turnover. McPherson also dished out four assists for Valpo.

Joe Reitz led Western Michigan (12-14) with 24 points, hitting just five field goal attempts while taking advantage of 18 trips to the free throw line, making 14. Reitz also grabbed a game-high 10 rebounds for the Broncos. Three other WMU players ended in double figures, as Gray scored 19 points, including seven free throws, while Fracalossi and David Kool chipped in 16 apiece.

Valpo shot 45.8% (27-of-59) from the field, including a 35% clip from behind the arc. The Crusaders also knocked down 19-of-24 (79.2%) of their free throw attempts, numbers that paled to the Broncos' 36-of-41 (87.8%) rate from the charity stripe.

Valparaiso (14-14) returns to the Athletics-Recreation Center for its final two Mid-Con home games next week. The two-game homestand will kick off with a key conference battle against Southern Utah on Thursday. Opening tip is set for 7:05 p.m., and all the action can be heard live on the Valpo Sports Radio Network (WVUR, 95.1 FM, Valparaiso; WEFM, 95.9 FM, Michigan City; WAKE, 1500 AM, Valparaiso) and online at www.valpo.edu/athletics.
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 1 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18 Valpo 6
Baseball Valpo 0 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 18 Milwaukee 3
Softball Oakland 3 VU Softball Field
Apr 18 Valpo 11
W Tennis Youngstown State 7 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 18 Valpo 0
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 2nd/3 (191)
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 3rd/5 (82)
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19 CCD
W Tennis Cleveland State 7 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19 Valpo 0
Softball Oakland 1 VU Softball Field
Apr 19 Valpo 2
Baseball Valpo 0 Milwaukee, Wis.
Apr 19 Milwaukee 5
Softball Oakland 4 8 inn.
Apr 19 Valpo 2
M Tennis Cleveland State 5 Valpo Tennis Complex
Apr 19 Valpo 2
M Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 20 12th/15 (314)
Baseball Kalamazoo 3 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 21 Valpo 10
Baseball Ohio Northern 2 Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 22 Valpo 1
Softball Valpo 3 Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22 Western Illinois 1
Softball Valpo 5 Macomb, Ill.
Apr 22 Western Illinois 4
Softball Valpo 2 Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24 #21/21 Notre Dame 7
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
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 25
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 25, 2:00 p.m. UIC
Baseball UIC Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 25, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 26, 3:00 p.m. Horizon League Tournament
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 26
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
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
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
M Tennis Valpo Ann Arbor, Mich.
Apr 27 Horizon League Tournament
M 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
Baseball Western Michigan Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 29, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball IUPUI VU Softball Field
Apr 29, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball IUPUI VU Softball Field
Apr 29, 5:00 p.m. Valpo
Baseball Chicago State Emory G. Bauer Field
Apr 30, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Bloomington, Ind.
Apr 30, 3:00 p.m. Indiana (resumption of suspended game)
Softball Valpo Bloomington, Ind.
Apr 30, 4:00 p.m. Indiana
W Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 2
M Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 2
Baseball Oakland Emory G. Bauer Field
May 2, 3:00 p.m. Valpo
M Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 3
W Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 3
Baseball Oakland Emory G. Bauer Field
May 3, 12:00 p.m. Valpo
Softball Valpo Green Bay, Wis.
May 3, 1:00 p.m. Green Bay
Softball Valpo Green Bay, Wis.
May 3, 3:00 p.m. Green Bay
W Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 4
M Track Horizon League Outdoor Championships Youngstown, Ohio
May 4
Softball Valpo Green Bay, Wis.
May 4, 12:00 p.m. Green Bay
Baseball Oakland Emory G. Bauer Field
May 4, 12:00 p.m. Valpo