Official Athletic Site of the Valparaiso University Crusaders
Merrill Shoots Miami Past Valpo in Final Seconds

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Cindi Merrill's basket with 1.7 seconds remaining lifted Miami (Ohio) to a 54-53 come-from-behind victory over Valparaiso on Saturday afternoon at the Athletics-Recreation Center.

The Crusaders have never defeated Miami in six attempts, but had played a pair of overtime contests against the RedHawks before today's last second deciding shot.

Valpo led for the first 39:27 of the contest before the RedHawks took their first lead of the game, 52-51, on an Amanda Jackson jumper with 33 seconds left. The Crusaders responded as Betsy Rietema (Grand Rapids, Mich./Christian H.S.) made a pair off free throws with 17 seconds remaining, setting the stage for Merrill's final shot.

The Crusaders jumped out in front from the opening tip. A 10-0 run over nearly four minutes pushed the lead to 12, 24-12, with 2:49 left in the first half as the Brown and Gold made six free throws during the stretch. Miami rallied before halftime, scoring the last eight points of the half, including Nicki Motto's basket as time expired as the teams went into the locker room with Valpo holding a 24-20 advantage.

Miami cut the lead to one, 29-28, four minutes into the second half before Valpo pushed the lead back to seven. The lead stayed between three and seven until Rietema's jumper at the 5:09 mark put Valpo in front 50-42. The basket would be the final field goal of the contest for the Crusaders. Five straight Miami points cut the lead to three with 2:19 to play. After a Tamra Braun (Savage, Minn./Prior Lake H.S.) split a pair of free throws, Jackson hit a basket with 1:28 remaining to cut the lead to one, setting the stage for the game's final minute.

Rietema led Valpo with 12 points, while Carrie Myers (Stickleyville, Va./Lee H.S.) added 11 including three three-point field goals. Jenna Stangler (St. Michael, Minn./St. Michael-Albertville H.S.) added ten points and eight rebounds. Stangler has now scored in double-figures in nine straight games, including all seven this year. Braun also grabbed eight boards for the Brown and Gold.

Merrill led Miami (6-2) with 20 points and eight rebounds, while Jackson scored all 17 of her points in the second half.

Valpo (3-4) shot just 30.5% from the floor in the game, and committed only 11 turnovers, including just two in the second half. The Crusaders forced 18 RedHawk miscues which led to 15 Valpo points. Miami outrebounded the Crusaders 48-33, including 17-9 on the offensive end.

Valparaiso will now take a week off for final exams before returning to action next Saturday, December 18, when the Crusaders travel to Chicago to take on Loyola (Ill.). Tip-off is set for 3 p.m. at the Gentile Center.
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