Valparaiso opens its season with 5 of 6 games against teams that are ranked in the top 16 of their respective class. Last weekend Valparaiso played in the Tip-Off Classic hosted by Hamilton Southeastern High School. #3 Carmel and #10 Hamilton Southeastern each knocked off the Vikings. Tonight Valpo plays host to the 2010 State Runners-Up and #7 ranked Merrillville. Saturday the Vikings travel to Plymouth for a game against the 3A #14 ranked Pilgrims. Next Friday, the Vikings meet the #16 ranked Wolves of Michigan City. Merrillville comes into tonight’s game with a 48-15 record during the regular season over the last three years.
Valparaiso senior Ariana Paul returns as the leading scorer, rebounder, and assist man from last year. She came into the season with 384 career points. Currently she ranks 30th on the all-time scoring list at Valparaiso with 433 points. She needs 13 points to pass Carey Brown to move into 29th place.
This meeting will be the 50th all time between the schools. Valparaiso holds a 34-15 advantage over the Pirates. Merrillville comes into the contest ranked 7th in the class 4A ICGSA poll. The IBCA top 20 poll ranks the Pirates 13th.
Valparaiso will travel to Plymouth this Saturday, November 20th. Junior Varsity tip is scheduled for 5:30 PM.