ST. JOHN | The 79 points Chesterton hung on Lake Central back on Dec. 11 were the most the Indians have given up this season, and Indians center Tyler Wideman hadn't forgotten.
"Coach (Dave Milausnic) told us, and I thought about my freshman year, that we didn't have anybody score that much on us," Wideman said. "(Defense) was a big focus. It started with a good week of practice, and it carried over to the game."
The Times No. 4 Trojans needed a big fourth quarter just to get 50 this time. The No. 7 Indians held them to 34 percent shooting and forced 10 first-half turnovers on their way to a 62-50 Duneland Athletic Conference victory.
"Tye (Wilburn) and (Joe) Bannister were fantastic on top," Milausnic said. "We were stretching them high and wide. You can't extend (your zone) if your guards don't go hard and quick. Joe didn't have a good game defensively the first time (against Chesterton). We were getting in his ear all week, and he had the right attitude about it. He's an excellent defender."
L.C. (9-5, 7-3) never trailed after a 7-0 start. It extended the lead to double figures in the second quarter and pushed the margin to as much as 20 (46-26) in the third quarter. Chesterton (9-6, 6-4) momentarily cut the deficit to single digits in the fourth quarter, but the Indians quickly answered with a Wideman putback and Mike Miklusak basket, then maintained the spread at the foul line.
"We just dug too big a hole," Chesterton coach Tom Peller said. "Too many turnovers. We were taking the right shots against the zone. We just weren't making them, and that compounded it. I just thought (L.C.) played with more energy."
Wideman filled the stat sheet with 18 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks and three steals. Four of his seven baskets came off missed shots.
"Coach was telling me just follow the plays," Wideman said. "Don't stop. Keep playing."
Miklusak backed Wideman with 13 points, while Bannister scored 10. L.C. went 5-of-9 from the arc, compared to 3-of-19 for Chesterton.
"We're getting progressively better," Milausnic said. "Outside of 1:40 against Merrrillville, we've played good basketball. The kids are confident. They're comfortable in their roles. Our shot selection's improved, and our transition defense is getting better. It's a nice win against a quality team."
Chris Palombizio scored a dozen points for Chesterton, one more than Matt Holba, who nabbed 10 boards. The Trojans had not lost by more than seven points this season.