VALPARAISO | Given the reaction, you may have thought Valparaiso had just won the sectional Friday.
For a team that had yet to win a Duneland Athletic Conference game this season, it may have felt like it.
The Vikings (3-17, 1-13) led by as many as 17 points in the third quarter, then saw all but the last two of it disappear in the final stanza before pulling away for a 51-46 victory over Chesterton.
"We put together four quarters," Valpo coach Jeanette Gray said. "We had a little adversity, but we just said, 'OK, slow down; take a deep breath; we'll score the next time,' and we did. Stop, score, stop, score. It was real simple. It was a good lesson for our sophomores to experience that type of situation."
Grace Withrow scored 19 points, including clutch back-to-back baskets, a jumper in the lane and a 3 from the right wing, after the Trojans drew within 42-40 inside the three-minute mark.
"It's a great shot when it goes in," Gray said. "She's a confident kid."
Andi Sarkisian added eight points and 10 rebounds.
"Our seniors (Andi and Alyssa Gates) played really well," Gray said.
Caroline Puntillo carried the Trojans (5-15, 2-14), who beat Valpo 58-30 on Dec. 21, with 22 points. Kelsey Conway added 11.
"You've got to show up to play," Chesterton coach Jack Campbell said.