Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Finishes Greater Ozark Invitational With Sixth-Place Finish
Nicole Hamilton and the Crusaders finished the tournament in sixth place. (Aran Kessler)
Nicole Hamilton and the Crusaders finished the tournament in sixth place. (Aran Kessler)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The #20 Valparaiso bowling team earned a pair of wins in its five matches in action Sunday at the Greater Ozark Invitational in Springfield, Mo., including a victory over preseason #1 and defending national champion Nebraska, as the Crusaders closed out their first tournament with a sixth-place finish in the ten-team field that included eight ranked squads.

“Overall, I was pleased with how we carried ourselves in our first tournament,” said Crusader head coach Stephen Anthony.  “This tournament field was very strong, and to come out of the last two days 5-5 with a sixth-place finish shows that we have a team that’s going to be competitive at the highest level.  I’m especially proud of how we conducted ourselves over this weekend and the way we worked together as a team.  For our first tournament, we learned a number of lessons on how to fight through close games, and I’m looking forward to continuing to build as a team and preparing for our next tournament.”

The Crusaders opened action on Sunday, which consisted of all best-of-seven baker matches, in a seeding-round match against Stephen F. Austin.  Valpo opened the match with a 202-158 victory, and after SFA took the next two games, captured game four by a 219-170 count to knot the match up at two games apiece.  But the Ladyjacks took the final two games of the match to earn a 4-2 victory.

Valpo then faced off against #12 Minnesota State-Mankato, taking game two 165-148 to tie things up at one game each.  Mankato earned wins in each of the next two games before the Crusaders bowled their best game of the day, putting a 225 on the board in game five to close to within 3-2.  But Mankato responded with a 196-161 win in game six to take the match, four games to two.

The tournament then moved into the bracket round to determine the final placements and the Crusaders drew the tall task of facing the top-ranked and defending national champion Cornhuskers in their first match of the bracket round.  Valpo got out to a quick start against Nebraska, earning 159-140 and 180-172 wins in each of the first two games.  Nebraska rallied back with a narrow 177-174 win in game three, but Valpo returned the favor with a 198-144 win in game four to go up 3-1.  The Cornhuskers responded with a 181-176 victory in game five, and a 211-159 Nebraska win in game six sent the match to a decisive game seven.  The Crusaders took the finale with one of their best efforts of the day, however, rolling a 213 to win by 42 pins and advance.

#14 Southern University was the next opponent on the slate for Valpo, and after the Crusaders earned a 195-187 victory in the opener, Southern took the next three games to go ahead 3-1.  But Valpo captured a narrow 177-175 decision in game five, propelling itself to the come-from-behind victory with 189-154 and 168-154 wins in games six and seven, respectively.  The win sent the Crusaders into the fifth-place match in a rematch from earlier in the day against Mankato, but Valpo was never able to gain the upper hand, as Mankato earned a 4-2 victory.

“Today, I was pleased with how we fought through early adversity,” said Anthony.  “After losing our first two matches, we got paired against #1 Nebraska and were in position to win in five.  We missed out on an opportunity to finish them in five and Nebraska pushed us to seven, but I was happy with how we found a way to win game seven.  Then against Southern, being down 3-1 and being able to rally for the win was another good sign for us as a team.  We bowled really well in our final match as well, but just couldn’t get ahead at any point.  Overall, I’m pleased with how we performed today, especially how we battled in our two wins.”

Valparaiso (9-5) returns to action in two Thursdays, traveling to Lincoln, Neb. on November 5 for the first of three days of competition at the Big Red Invitational, hosted by Nebraska.

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 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 Golf Wolfpack Spring Open Raleigh, N.C. (Lonnie Poole Golf Course)
Apr 19 CCD
M Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 2nd/3 (191)
W Track DePaul Invitational Chicago, Ill.
Apr 19 3rd/5 (82)
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 Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24, 5:00 p.m. #21/21 Notre Dame
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
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
M Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
W Track Miami (Ohio) Invitational Oxford, Ohio
Apr 26
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
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