Big picture: The Duneland Athletic Conference race became a bit murkier Tuesday when Chesterton topped Lake Central 3-2.
It sets up a potential three-way tie in the conference, with Valparaiso the only remaining undefeated team. The Vikings beat Chesterton earlier in the year. L.C. plays Valparaiso on Sept. 18.
“No matter what happens, with the early loss (to the Vikings), we’re hoping for help. This was the only thing we could control,” Trojans coach Ben Forgey said. “We played a good game against a really good opponent, a fun game and we came out with the win.”
Sophomore midfielder Addy Joiner put the Trojans (8-3, 4-1) on the board first, scoring on Ashlee Bakaitis’s cross in the third minute. She added another at 25:24 to double the lead.
“They have a fantastic counter attack with Addy and Bakaitis. With that kind of speed, you just have to be aware of it and keep shape,” Indians coach Shawn Thomas said. “A couple times we just got caught.”
Lake Central (8-2-1, 4-1) evened the game in the second half on a pair of penalty kicks for Chesterton fouls inside the box. Stephanie Dijak took the first after being knocked down in the box. She scored the second when the Trojans were called for a handball. And a 2-0 halftime lead was erased barely three minutes after the break.
Olivia Hansen put a goal just inside the near post from about 25 yards out on the right side to give Chesterton the lead again with about 14 minutes to go.
Turning point: Hansen’s goal in the 66th minute beat back the Lake Central comeback.
Chesterton player of the game: Joiner — She scored two first-half goals.
Lake Central player of the game: Dijak — She scored two penalty kick goals.
Quote: “It’s not at all surprising. She just wants to be good. That she was good again today was no surprise at all,” Forgey on goalie Marney Sisson, who had eight saves.
Beyond the box score: Lake Central hasn’t beaten Chesterton since 2015.
Up next: Kankakee Valley at Chesterton 7 p.m. Thursday; Concord at Lake Central 11 a.m. Saturday.