Valparaiso will be making its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1968 after defeating the UIC Flames on Sunday in Chicago. The Crusaders exploded for eight runs in the seventh inning to key a 14-5 victory. Valpo reliever Tyler Deetjen was credited with the victory after allowing one run in 3.1 innings on work.
Mark Johnson was named Tournament MVP after going 3-for-5 with four RBI on Sunday.
A three-run fifth inning put UIC ahead 5-3, but the Flames would quickly relinquish the lead. By the bottom of the seventh, the Crusaders were ahead 6-5 before Valpo's offensive explosion would turn a tight game into a blowout in a hurry. Spencer Mahoney's triple was the decisive blow to the Flames' championship hopes in the inning.
For more on the 2012 Horizon League Baseball Tournament, keep it locked to SB Nation Chicago.