STEVE HANLON: L.C. football is baaaaaaaack

2011-09-09T22:00:00Z 2012-08-30T23:55:17Z STEVE HANLON: L.C. football is baaaaaaaackBy Steve Hanlon Prep Beat nwitimes.com
September 09, 2011 10:00 pm  • 

ST. JOHN | The worm has turned. So had the tide. It is official in my book. Lake Central football is back on the map.

The fun and aura at The Burial Grounds was electric at Crown Point came in to play the most-improved team in Northwest Indiana. And maybe northern Indiana.

At one point Sean Begley, the reserved assistant principal at Lake Central, got up on a chair and led the Indians band in the fight song. One Indians supporter on the sidelines said, "That is totally out of his character."

A 26-7 domination of the Bulldogs was eye-opening, jaw-dropping and bleacher-filling. I have no clue how the school is going to handle the overflow crowds that will be filing in on Friday nights. It is undeniable. Every game LC plays the rest of this year, and in the coming autumns, will be an event.

The last time most people came to watch the Blue Indians play all they heard was crickets and the noise of the visiting fans screaming after a touchdown. And another. And another.

Those days are over. Coach Brett St. Germain has brought a time machine into St. John. Remember the 1990s? The SRO crowd? The on and on and on?

It is baaaaaaaack. This team is for real.

"We started off strong in the first quarter," said quarterback David Yancey, who had 176 yards rushing on 13 carries for two touchdowns. He was 2-for-3 for 56 yards throwing with another score.

"And our defense sealed the deal," Yancey said. "We still have work to do. We have a chip on our shoulder every week."

Lake Central football? With a chip on its shoulder? Yeah, and the Cubs are going to win a World Series in my lifetime. Come on.

"Man, you know, we've worked so hard for this," said senior linebacker Tyler Szczecina, who is a stud by the way. His 25-yard interception return in the third quarter was the final nail in the coffin.

I couldn't run for any government office because I have no interest in spending someone else's money. But this LC football team needs the help of the voters in the district. In November a referendum will be on the ballot to raise taxes enough to build a new school and to upgrade the athletic complex. A shovel needs to be put into the mud of the Burial Grounds.

This team, this program, deserves more than this.

The tax increase with be about $10 to $20 a month, depending on the cost of a home. That's one less pizza a month. Yes, Hobart beat a ton of people for a lot of years on a less-than-sparkling field. But this is a new age and this Indians team deserves this.

"If you look at any high school or college program that's what they do when they want to get better," St. Germain said. "They want to have a place that gives everyone a greater sense of pride. But right now we've got what we've got and we have to make the best of it."

This was the biggest win at LC since the 1990s. They got the Bulldog monkey off their back. Don't be surprised if this team continues to improve. With hard work, this team has everything it needs to make a run.

For the fans, one less pizza a month. That's all it would take.

This column solely represents the writer's opinion. Reach him at steve.hanlon@nwi.com.

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