Game #1: November 19, 2008, 7:05 p.m. CST
Bowling Green (0-1, 0-0 MAC)
at Valparaiso (0-0, 0-0 Horizon)
Athletics-Recreation Center (5,000) - Valparaiso, Ind.
Coming Up in Crusader Hoops: Valparaiso will tip off the 38th season of women’s basketball on Wednesday evening at the ARC as the Crusaders host Bowling Green. Valpo won both of its exhibition games, and is opening at home for just the second time in the last eight years. Bowling Green opened its season on Friday night in Philadelphia, Pa. dropping a 70-55 contest to Temple.
On the Air: Wednesday’s game against Bowling Green will be carried live on WVUR (95.1-FM, Valparaiso) and online at valpoathletics.com. Adam Amin and Adam Tein will call all the action live from the Athletics-Recreation Center. In addition, the game can be viewed live online as part of the Horizon League Network at horizonleaguenetwork.tv or through the link at valpoathletics.com.
Series Notes: Valparaiso and Bowling Green are meeting for the fourth time ever and just the second time at the Athletics-Recreation Center. The Falcons have won all three previous meetings between the two schools, including an 81-56 victory in Bowling Green, Ohio on November 9, 2007 to open last season. The two teams met on the hardwood for the first time in 1990 and the only other meeting here at the ARC came on January 5, 1992, a 127-99 win by the Falcons.
Wrapping Up Exhibition Play: Agnieszka Kulaga led four players in double figures with 15 points as Valparaiso defeated Concordia (Wis.) 77-48 on November 1 in the Crusaders’ exhibition opener. Sylwia Zabielewicz added 13 points while Lauren Kenney had a game-high nine rebounds. On November 8 the Crusaders cruised to an 89-44 win over Saint Joseph’s (Ind.). Katie Emig came off of the bench to score 17 points and grab nine rebounds while Aimee Litka added 15 points for the Brown and Gold.
Scouting Bowling Green: The Falcons opened their season last Friday suffering a 70-55 defeat to defending Atlantic-10 champion Temple. The four-time defending Mid-American Conference regular season champions are picked to again win the East Division as well as the MAC Tournament title this year. Lauren Prochaska leads the way for Bowling Green after being named the MAC Freshman of the Year in 2007-2008. She averaged 14.8 points and 5.9 rebounds per game as a rookie and led the Falcons with 13 points and six boards in the opener.
Crusaders in Openers: Valpo is 10-26 all-time in season openers, with results from the 1973-1974 season unknown. Last year, the Crusaders fell 81-56 to open the season at Bowling Green. Valpo is looking to snap a string which has seen the Crusaders fall in seven of their last eight season openers. Valpo has won six of its last seven home openers, though, after defeating Ball State 64-55 to open the home campaign last year. The only time in the last eight years the Crusaders opened their season at home was in 2005-2006, a 62-48 win against Northern Iowa.
Kulaga Earns Preseason Honors: Agnieszka Kulaga was named to the Preseason All-Horizon League Second Team after averaging 14.6 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last year for the Crusaders. She had a triple-double last season and earned Second Team All-League honors as a junior.
Valpo Tabbed Sixth in Horizon League: The Crusaders were picked to finish in sixth place this season in the Horizon League according to the conference’s preseason poll. Last year the Crusaders finished 14-16 overall and 9-9 in their inaugural league campaign to finish sixth. Green Bay was selected to win the Horizon League title for the 11th consecutive season.
Hochstetler Ranks Among Career Assist Leaders: Launa Hochstetler enters the season among the top-15 on Valpo’s career assist list. The senior is currently 14th with 225 helpers. With her first three assists this year, she will tie Lina Mascarenas (1988-1992) and Betsy Rietema (2003-2007) for 12th all-time wearing the Brown and Gold.
Home Sweet Home: Valpo has had constant success at the ARC over the past seven years. Last season the Crusaders were 9-4 at home and since the beginning of the 2001-2002 campaign, Valpo has posted a 71-20 (.780) record at the ARC.
Valpo Adds Two for Next Year’s Class: Head coach Keith Freeman has signed two players to National Letters of Intent for the 2009-2010 season. Skyler Gick is a 5’7” guard from Otterbein, Ind. who averaged 15.1 points per game as a junior at Benton Central High School. Laura Richards is a 5’9” guard from Connersville, Ind and averaged 16.0 points an 5.2 rebounds per game a year ago at Connersville High School.