Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Crusaders Split Pair of Pitcher's Duels

Friday, March 31, 2006

For the second straight day at the Valparaiso University Softball Field, pitching reigned supreme, as the Crusaders downed Oakland 2-1 in the opener before falling 1-0 in eight innings in the nightcap Friday afternoon.

One day after blanking IPFW over 14 innings, the Crusader staff was nearly as dominant, scattering 13 hits over 15 frames. But unlike Thursday, the Brown and Gold only picked up one win against their Mid-Con rival, whom they face off with again Saturday for two key games.

In the opening game Friday, Valpo manufactured a run in the first inning after a leadoff single from Megan Carroll (Eaton Rapids, Mich./Eaton Rapids). Carroll moved to second on a groundout before scoring on Taylor Callahan's (Pendergrass, Ga./Greater Atlanta Christian) base hit. The single for Callahan snapped the junior out of an 0-for-13 funk and was the start of a solid day at the plate.

Starter Stephanie Kelly (Plainfield, Ill./Plainfield) cruised through the first three innings, but ran into trouble in the fourth. With two on and no one out, Kelly got a brief reprieve when catcher Shannon Robinson (Toronto, Ontario/John Redmond) picked Camie Knorr off at second base. But Kelly walked the next batter, and Andrea Zappia (Indianapolis, Ind./Franklin Central) was forced to enter the circle in relief. Zappia, as she did on Thursday, quickly escaped trouble, getting a pair of fly ball outs to retire the side and keep Valpo in front.

In the fourth inning, the Crusaders padded their lead to 2-0. Callahan led off with a single, and moved up to second on a sacrifice. The next batter, Alicia Ashburn (Mishawaka, Ind./Mishawaka) stroked her second triple in as many games to drive Callahan in with the insurance run.

Zappia (4-5) closed out the ballgame for the Brown and Gold, earning her third win in as many games. Laura Chomokos (4-5) went the distance for the Golden Grizzlies and suffered the loss.

No team could muster a rally in game two until the Crusaders finally got to Chomokos in the fifth. With two outs, Ann Sievert (Davenport, Iowa/Assumption) singled to left center and pinch-hitter Allison Whitesell (Fort Wayne, Ind./Northrop) followed with a base hit to put runners on first and second. But Chomokos struck on Mallory Gill (Beloit, Wis./Memorial to silence the threat.

Chomokos then stepped into the batters box in the sixth and laced a double down the left field line off starter Chris Halstead (Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral) to lead off the inning. Zappia followed in relief, and promptly surrendered a single and walk to load the bases with no one out. But the next batter, Stephanie Zellner, grounded to third, and Callahan threw home to force Chomokos at the plate. Then, with one out, Zappia coerced a 1-2-3 double play from Alexandro Perrino to preserve the shutout.

The Crusaders mounted a mini-rally in their half of the sixth, getting Carroll to second with one out, but Callahan's deep liner to left was snared by Cheron Guyton to end the inning.

Oakland pushed the winning run across in the eighth, when Sievert could not reach Zellner's sinking two-out liner, watching the play go for a double and Lisa Colores score the eventual winning run.

Chomokos (5-5) earned the win by tossing eight shutout innings, while Zappia (4-6) suffered the tough-luck loss.

The Crusaders (9-13, 1-5 Mid-Con) and Golden Grizzlies (7-12, 1-1 Mid-Con) will kick off their Saturday doubleheader at 12:00 p.m., closing out the four-game series. The games can be heard live on 95.1 FM, WVUR, and online at www.valpo.edu/athletics.

Game one box score
Game two box score
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. #21/21 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