VALPARAISO | It was not the win Times No. 3 Lake Central wanted to close out the season, but it was a win nonetheless.
The Indians (7-2) trailed Valparaiso at halftime but scored a pair of second-half touchdowns to earn a 21-15 win over the Vikings.
“Very uninspired football, I think that we played,” Lake Central head coach Brett St. Germain said. “We’ve had issues this year where we show up to some games and it just seems like our kids aren’t – I don’t know if inspired is the word? Motivated? Obviously, as a head coach, that falls on me.
Tip your caps to Valpo, they did a great job. We’re lucky to walk out of here with a win.”
The low point Friday night for the Indians came on the final play of the first half when Vikings senior Matt Ford scooped up a botched handoff and rumbled 45 yards into the end zone as time expired, giving Valparaiso (3-6) a 12-7 halftime lead.
“That was just kind of evident of how we played,” St. Germain said. “When you don’t play well and you play uninspired football, those things tend to happen. We like to use the expression ‘the football gods’ and the football gods are going to punish us sometimes when we aren’t playing well.”
Lake Central took the lead back for good late in the third quarter when Ethan Darter hit Jake Turngren for a 63-yard touchdown pass. The Indians put the game away in the fourth quarter when Brandon Scott broke several tackles and ran into the end zone from 32 yards out.
“Brandon’s a very solid player for us,” St. Germain said. “He does everything, he works hard; he’s a great team player. Just a great kid to have in the program.
He made some nice runs and typically, when we struggle like that, you’ve eventually got to take over the game a little bit with your run game. We knew in the second half we wanted to run the ball a little bit more and hopefully get some momentum back.”
Scott ended the game with 115 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries, including 75 yards in the second half. The junior running back opened the scoring with a 6-yard touchdown run midway through the first half.
Valparaiso scored midway through the first quarter on a four-yard touchdown pass from JP Kunze to Michael Rastovic. The backup Vikings quarterback finished 12-for-31 for 88 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
Caleb Dawson added a late field goal for Valparaiso.