Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Down UIC, Stay Alive in Horizon League Championship
Alex Lagesse surrendered just two hits under the lights Thursday night. (Ray Acevedo)
Alex Lagesse surrendered just two hits under the lights Thursday night. (Ray Acevedo)
UIC (26-27)
at
Valparaiso (38-17)
5/10/2012 | Valparaiso, Ind. | Attendance: 425
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UIC0000000020
Valparaiso120000X341
PitchingIPHRERBBSO
Win: LAGESSE (19-9) 7.020015
Loss: MILLER (14-14) 2.143233
BattingABRHRBIBBHR
PREISH (UIC) 301000
HEWETT (UIC) 201000
STRICKLAND (VALPO) 211110
DOERFFLER (VALPO) 301100
MARINEC (VALPO) 311000
RUTKOWSKI (VALPO) 201100

Thursday, May 10, 2012

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.

The win came in the first-ever game played under the lights at night at the Valparaiso University Softball Field.  With the victory, the Crusaders advance in the loser’s bracket and will take on Youngstown State on Friday morning at 11 a.m. in an elimination game.

Lagesse mowed the Flames down all night long to improve to 19-9 on the season, her 19 victories matching Andrea Zappia’s 2008 season for the most victories in a single season in Crusader history.  The only two hits the senior allowed came back-to-back in the second, as UIC picked up a bunt single and a bloop single into shallow center with two outs.  But Lagesse set down Erica Hampton looking on strikes to avert the threat.

Other than that, only two other Flames batters even reached base on Thursday night.  Melissa Priesh reached on an error to lead off the fifth, ending a streak of seven straight retired by Lagesse, but Priesh was later called out for leaving first base early.  Jacki Fletcher walked with one out in the seventh as well, but Lagesse induced consecutive flyouts to straight-away center to close out the gem.

“I thought that Alex threw well for us all day long,” said Crusader head coach Jordan Stevens.  “She threw well in the first game too, and I think she just carried that over and was good for us tonight.”

On the offensive side of the ball, the Crusaders got the only offense they would need in the bottom of the first.  Redshirt sophomore Jessie Marinec (Alsip, Ill./Marist) picked up a one-out infield single and then replaced senior Sara Strickland (Scottsdale, Ariz./Horizon) as the lead runner at second base when Strickland was erased on a grounder to third.  Senior Jordan Rutkowski (Alden, N.Y./Alden) stepped up and blooped a ball that landed in shallow left field, just inside the foul line, to plate Marinec without a throw for the game’s first run.

Valpo then picked up a couple of critical insurance tallies in the second inning.  Senior Kelsey Phalen (Batavia, Ill./Batavia) led off the frame with a walk, and after moving up to second on a sacrifice bunt, came around to score on a solid single back through the middle by Strickland.  Strickland, who advanced to second on the throw to the plate, took advantage of a passed ball to take third base and scored on another base knock back up the middle, this one by sophomore Angie Doerffler (Fort Wayne, Ind./Concordia Lutheran) to make it 3-0.

“I thought getting on the board early was important, because UIC is a tough team with two good pitchers and batters throughout their lineup who can do damage,” said Stevens.   “It was also good for our confidence to get out to the lead, especially after the way our first game ended.  Even though they didn't all end up with hits on the board, I still thought we had better at-bats this game with runners in scoring position.”

Devin Miller took the loss for UIC (26-27), going 2.1 innings and giving up all three runs in the starting assignment.  Valpo tallied just four hits by four different players, but also worked five walks and got hit by a pitch once.  Strickland, Rutkowski and senior Joylyn Ichiyama-Drewry (Torrance, Calif./Redondo Union) all reached base twice in the winning effort.

Valparaiso (38-17) looks to remain alive in the 11 a.m. contest against Youngstown State Friday morning.  With a win, the Crusaders would play another elimination game at 4 p.m. against either Butler or Loyola.  All the action tomorrow can be seen live on the Horizon League Network, with links for the live video and live stats available at www.valpoathletics.com.

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 2 Notre Dame, Ind.
Apr 24 #21/21 Notre Dame 7
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