Men’s basketball: Crusaders off to fast start
By DAVE MELTON Post-Tribune correspondent November 9, 2012 8:02PM
Georgia Southern's C.J. Reed and VU's Kevin Van Wijk eye a loose ball during the first half of their game at Valparaiso Friday Nov. 9, 2012. | Andy Lavalley~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 9, 2012 10:08PM
VALPARAISO — A season full of high expectations began in impressive fashion, as Valparaiso’s offense dominated the opening minutes and never slowed down in an 85-54 win over Georgia Southern.
“I’d been waiting all week for this game,” said senior forward Ryan Broekhoff. “In the end, those exhibition games don’t count. There was a bunch of nerves and excitement.”
Just over six minutes into the game, VU raced to a 17-2 lead. As that half ended, Jordan Coleman drilled a 3-pointer to give the Crusaders a 40-21 halftime lead.
The second half was more of the same, as the Crusaders outscored the visiting Eagles 45-33.
“I think what happened tonight is what they do in practice,” VU coach Bryce Drew said. “They share the ball well and look for the open shot.”
A balanced attack led VU, as all nine Crusaders scored at least five points in the blowout. Kevin Van Wijk led the way with 16 points, while Coleman added 15 and Broekhoff scored 14.
“All three of those guys had big nights for us,” said Drew. “Ryan and Kevin got us out to great starts in the first half, especially Ryan with a couple of 3s. Jordan played exceptionally well in his first game. He shot the ball well and was very active on defense.”
Before the game, it was revealed that forward Bobby Capobianco will have to wait to make his VU debut after undergoing surgery on Thursday for a hernia. Capobianco sat out the 2011-12 season after transferring from IU and was the team’s leading scorer in two preseason games.
“He’s doing well, the surgery went excellent,” Drew said after the game. “It’s going to be a few weeks before he’s able to do anything. But as soon as the doctors clear him I’m sure he’ll be in a uniform ready to play.”