Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Valpo Clinches Postseason Berth With Scoreless Draw at UIC
Ryan Schwarz picked up his third straight shutout Saturday. (Ray Acevedo)
Ryan Schwarz picked up his third straight shutout Saturday. (Ray Acevedo)

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The game was delayed 24 hours, but the result was worth waiting for, as Valparaiso clinched a spot in the upcoming Horizon League Championship with a 0-0 (2ot) tie at UIC on Saturday evening.  Crusader goalkeeper Ryan Schwarz (Rockford, Ill./Boylan Catholic) extended his shutout streak to over 299 minutes in the scoreless duel and tied a Valpo single-season record for clean sheets.

The draw clinched the spot in the postseason, as this year’s tournament will feature just the league’s top six teams.  The one point awarded gave Valpo 11 points on the season, four points ahead of seventh-place WrightState, which has just one match remaining.  Valpo is still in the hunt for a possible second-seed, which would give the Crusaders a bye into the semifinals, while a third or fourth seed would bring a first-round quarterfinal matchup to Brown Field.

“I just want to congratulate all of our guys on qualifying for the postseason tournament,” said Crusader head coach Mike Avery.  “In this league, with the level and depth of teams competing, it’s a great accomplishment to finish in the top six.  You can’t win the whole thing if you’re not playing in it, so all of our ultimate goals are still alive for us.”

The tie also assures the Crusaders of finishing at or above .500 on the season, a feat not accomplished by a Valpo side since the 1987 squad went 9-6-1.  The Crusaders also sit just one victory shy of matching that year’s team for the program record for wins in a single season.

Saturday’s contest was a very even affair, as UIC (6-4-6, 3-1-2 Horizon) attempted just seven shots on the night while Valpo recorded six shot attempts, both teams placing four of their tries on frame.  Schwarz and UIC netminder Jovan Bubonja, the league’s last two Goalkeepers of the Year, were both up to the challenge, as both stopped all four shots on goal to secure the scoreless draw.  For Schwarz, it was his third consecutive clean sheet and sixth of the 2009 campaign, matching Kevin Hughes of the aforementioned 1987 squad for most in a single year in school history.  It also is his 12th career shutout, tied for second on Valpo’s all-time chart.

“Tonight’s result was earned against a very good UIC team that we played well against,” said Avery.  “It was a really evenly played game, and both teams had some good chances, including a shot off the goal frame on each side.  It was an exciting contest, and in the end a draw is a pretty good result.  Schwarz was terrific again tonight for us, while Rodolfo Lucas (Mogi Mirim, Brazil/ [Coffeyville C.C.]) and Wei Ming Wong (Hong Kong/Hong Kong International [SMU]) were both fantastic in the central part of our defense tonight.”

Valparaiso (8-6-2, 3-2-2 Horizon) closes out the regular season on Senior Day at Brown Field on Saturday, November 7 as the Crusaders challenge Cleveland State at 1 p.m. CST.  If you can’t make it to the game, all the action can be heard live on WVUR, 95.1 FM, Valparaiso and online at www.valpoathletics.com, which will also have a link for live stats.

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 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. Notre Dame
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 25
M 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
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
W 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
W Golf Horizon League Championship Howey in the Hills, Fla. (Mission Inn Resort & Club)
Apr 27
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