VALPARAISO | The Chesterton fan section didn't get a chance to rush the court at Valparaiso on Thursday night. The volleyball team rushed the fans.
The Times No. 10 Trojans led the fans in the Chesterton fight song after pulling out a dramatic 25-15, 20-25, 25-20, 15-25,15-13 win over the No. 5 Vikings.
"This was a huge win for us," Chesterton junior Emily Marcus said. "This was one that we really wanted, and we came together as a team to get the win."
The Trojans came out of the gates fast and dominated in a 25-15 opening game that had the Vikings back on their heels. Valparaiso recovered in the second game, but the Trojans proved they would not be deterred by a Viking sweep earlier in the season.
"I thought that Chesterton played really well defensively and was a very scrappy team," Valparaiso coach Katie Lenard said. "We made a lot of mistakes and then we started dwelling on those mistakes."
Chesterton battled back-and-forth in the third game and eventually pulled out a 25-20 win that gave the Trojans a cushion for later in the match.
"I told them that they had to win the third game because you need a safety net against a team like Valpo," Chesterton coach TR Harlan said. "A team that talented isn't going to go away. We knew they'd make a run, and we needed to be able to answer that run."
The Vikings captured the fourth game and then battled back from an 8-3 deficit in the deciding game to take a 10-9 lead. Chesterton scored the next four points to take control of the game and then weathered a late Valparaiso run to close the door.
"I'm really proud of our focus and our ability to stay in points," Harlan said. "That's been a problem for us this season."
Rachel Bontrager had 13 kills to pace the Vikings (11-9, 7-2).
Marcus led the Trojans (11-7, 4-5) with 10 kills and 18 digs while Aubrey Nagdeman added nine kills.
"A win like this definitely boosts our confidence," Marcus said, "but we have bigger matches to come."