Women’s Basketball Team Drops Road Contest at Indiana
The Valparaiso University women’s basketball team fell to Big Ten foe Indiana 87-58 at historic Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Ind. on Sunday afternoon. The Crusaders were once again led in scoring by Dani Franklin, who posted 18 points. The fourth quarter was a bright spot, as the Crusaders outscored the Hoosiers 26-15.
How It Happened
- The game was tied 4-4 early, but Indiana went on a 7-0 run to grab an 11-4 edge. The spurt was highlighted by an Alexis Gassion 3-pointer, her first field goal of what turned out to be a productive performance.
- The Hoosiers sustained their season-long field goal percentage success in the opening quarter, shooting 53.3 percent to Valpo’s 28.6. Gassion finished the opening stanza with nine points, and Indiana committed just one turnover.
- Amber Lindfors scored Valpo’s first four points of the second quarter, followed by a Franklin layup to make it 26-15 with 7:17 remaining in the half. The Crusaders would not convert another field goal until a layup by Georgi Donchetz that came with 1:25 to go in the half.
- Haylee Thompson drained a 3-pointer with 44 seconds to go in the second quarter, the first made 3 of her three-year Valpo career.
- The Crusaders trailed 42-22 at the break, in part due to Gassion’s 15 points and 6-of-10 shooting performance. Indiana attempted just four free throws in the first half.
- The Hoosiers pulled away in the third quarter, outscoring Valpo 30-10. After shooting 62.5 percent in the second quarter, Valpo cooled to 29.4 percent in the third.
- After Indiana recorded the first basket of the fourth quarter, the Crusaders went on a 12-0 run to tighten the score to 74-47.
- Franklin was held scoreless in the third, but she broke through in the fourth with 10 in that quarter alone.
- After forcing just four turnovers in the first three quarters combined, the Crusaders benefited from nine Indiana turnovers in the fourth quarter.
- Valpo trailed in points off turnovers 25-0, then went on to score the final 20 points off turnovers of the game.
- The Hoosiers did damage in transition, outscoring Valpo in fast break points 14-2. The Crusaders were outrebounded 39-29, including an eight-rebound deficit in the third quarter.
Inside the Game
- Franklin was Valpo’s leading scorer for the ninth time in 10 games. It was also the ninth time this season she’s reached double figures.
- Donchetz hit double figures for the second consecutive Sunday, matching a career high with 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting.
- Caitlin Morrison chipped in eight points and five rebounds, while Thompson added seven points.
- Franklin continued her success at the free-throw line by going 6-of-6 in the game to finish the weekend 12-of-12 at the stripe. Franklin has now made 36 consecutive free throws in true road games dating back to March 5, 2015 at Oakland.
- Hannah Schaub continued to distribute well by dishing out seven assists, while also grabbing three steals.
- Valpo finished the game at 27.3 percent from behind the arc and 39.2 percent overall, marking just the second time this season they had a lower field-goal percentage than their opponent. The Hoosiers shot 53.1 percent on their way to upping their record to 7-3.
- Valpo committed 19 turnovers to Indiana’s 13. The Crusaders haven’t won the turnover against a Division-I team yet this season.
- Imani Scott-Thompson made her second appearance of the season and first since Nov. 21. She had been sidelined with an injury.
The Crusaders (5-5) now have some time off for final exams this week. They return to the court on Monday, Dec. 19 against Bradley (2-6) at 7 p.m. at the Athletics-Recreation Center. The game can be seen on ESPN3, heard on 95.1 FM Valparaiso and followed through live stats. David Horak will have play-by-play, with Renee’ Turpa handling color commentary. Links to all coverage will be available on ValpoAthletics.com.
Crusaders Down Grace, Hold Winning Record Through Nine Games
The Valparaiso University women’s basketball team dispatched Grace College 71-49 on Saturday afternoon at the Athletics-Recreation Center. The Crusaders improved to 5-4 on the season, achieved their best nine-game start since 2005-2006 and equaled their best nine-game start since 1999-2000. Valpo was led in scoring by Dani Franklin (Cedar Rapids, Iowa / George Washington) and Amber Lindfors (Elk Grove Village, Ill. / Elk Grove), who poured in 17 points apiece.
How It Happened
- The Crusaders started the game on a 7-0 run capped by a Meredith Hamlet (McBain, Mich. / McBain) 3-pointer, but then the Lancers responded with a 7-0 run of their own to level the score with 2:06 remaining in the first quarter. Valpo captured the final five points of the quarter to hold a 12-7 edge after one stanza.
- Valpo went on a 9-0 run to build a four-point advantage into a 13-point cushion late in the second quarter. Freshman Caitlin Morrison (Glenview, Ill. / Glenbrook South) had six of the nine points during the spurt. The Crusaders led 34-21 at halftime.
- Hamlet scored nine of her 16 points in the third quarter to help the Crusaders outscore the Lancers 21-16 and take a 55-37 lead into the fourth.
- Valpo sealed the deal with a 10-0 run in the fourth. The Lancers scored with 6:32 remaining in the game to make it 57-43, then didn’t notch another basket until the final seconds of the game.
- The Crusaders outscored the Lancers in the paint 45-24 and won the turnover battle for the second time this season, committing 13 to Grace’s 18. Valpo shot 42.4 percent while holding Grace to 30 percent shooting.
Inside the Game
- Lindfors’ 17-point output marked a career best. Her previous career high was 15 on Dec. 21, 2015 against IU Kokomo. Lindfors added a game-high seven rebounds in the victory.
- Hamlet’s 16 points was her best performance of the season. She went 6-of-9 from the floor and knocked down two triples while also hauling in five rebounds.
- Franklin scored 17 points to tie for the team lead. She went 6-of-6 at the free-throw line and 5-of-11 from the field. Franklin has led the team or tied for the team lead in scoring in eight of the nine games this season. She’s also reached double figures on eight occasions.
- Morrison chipped in 10 points on 4-of-9 shooting to reach double figures for the first time in her Valpo career. This marked the first time this season the Crusaders had four double-figure scorers in a game.
- The Crusaders have a winning record this late in the season for the first time since 2008-2009, when they were 9-7 through 16 games.
- Valpo is 4-1 at home, their best home start since 2012-2013, when first-year head coach Tracey Dorow guided the team to a 5-1 home mark to begin the year.
- Valpo now has five nonleague wins, the most since 2012-2013 and equaling the most since joining the Horizon League. With still two nonleague games remaining, Valpo has already matched the most nonleague victories since 2006-2007, when it notched six nonconference triumphs in their first season in the Mid-Content Conference.
- The Crusaders have had a better shooting percentage than their opponent in eight of the nine games this season, with the only exception coming against No. 1 Notre Dame.
Thoughts from Head Coach Tracey Dorow
“I was really proud of the way we moved the ball better. I thought we turned the ball over more than what we wanted to see, but a lot of the mistakes we made were being aggressive. I’m a little bit disappointed in our field-goal percentage for that first quarter. I thought we would shoot the ball a little bit better today, but at the same time I feel like we played hard. We did a lot of good things. It’s nice to come out with a win.”
On the start: “We talked about not settling for 3s. I thought we took too many 3s because they didn’t have much size inside. I’m proud of the effort we had. We pursued the ball relatively well, and we talked about the times we didn’t. We’ve got to do a better job going into tomorrow.”
On the first nine game of the season: “I think we’re battling. It’s hard because you go from traveling on the road, to home, to road and we’re getting ready for exams. It seems like it’s been a really tough stretch for us as far as the date and time of the games. At the same time, I think it’s going to help us settle in and do the things we need to do. All this is to prepare for the Horizon League. It’s done what we wanted it to do. We’re playing some really good opponents. Grace is going to do a really nice job all season and they’re going to have a great year.
The Crusaders (5-4) will hit the road on Saturday evening and return to the court on Sunday at 1 p.m. Central Time against Indiana at Assembly Hall in Bloomington. The game will be available via BTN Plus (subscription only) and can be heard on Valparaiso’s flagship radio station, 95.1 FM Valparaiso. Jordan Morandini will have the radio call, with Brandon Vickrey providing color commentary. Links to live video, audio and stats will be available on ValpoAthletics.com.
Lake Central Grad Davy Added to Valpo Women’s Golf Staff
The Valparaiso University women’s golf team has added Bri Davy (Schererville, Ind. / Lake Central) to its coaching staff as a volunteer assistant.
Davy will assist Jon Haas, who was hired as head coach earlier this month. After a strong prep career at Lake Central High School, Davy was a member of Valparaiso’s first women’s golf recruiting class when she joined the program for the 2010-2011 season. She played one season under Mike Higdon and three years under Mat Blair before graduating from Valpo in 2014 with a degree in marketing and management.
In the summer of 2011, Davy competed as an amateur in the LPGA Future Tour South Shore Championship.
During her time at Lake Central, Davy was a two-time state qualifier and an all-conference player all four years.