Chesterton Tribune

CHS Football heads to Merrillville for regular season finale

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By TR HARLAN

John Snyder is an Iowa fan.

He looks like Hawkeye. Only it’s like Hawkeye Pierce (aka Alan Alda) from the old MASH television show.

“You go through illnesses and injuries every year because it’s part of the game,” Snyder said. “I’ve never had this many this sudden and grouped together. And it’s been key players. One guy doesn’t make a team, but seven, eight, nine guys, that makes a team.”

The Chesterton football team travels to Merrillville tomorrow night for a 7 p.m. kickoff in the regular season finale for both teams. And the Trojans could be without the services of up to seven starters.

“My biggest concern is finding replacements for injured guys and sick guys,” Snyder said. “We continue to wait for guys to get back and get healthy to help us out, but we continue to have new injuries and that illness that’s going around.”

Which means somebody has to step in and make a difference.

“If the kids have done what we asked them to do all year, they should be ready to go,” Snyder said. “Whether they can physically get it done or not is one thing, but they should mentally be ready to do what we ask them to do. That’s troublesome right now because it’s becoming apparent we had some kids that were just coasting through practice.”

Merrillville enters Friday night’s game after handing Lake Central its first loss of the season last week.

“They are a typical Merrillville team on offense that looks like they’ve put some things together now,” Snyder said. “They’ve added some new wrinkles and have a power-type of game that is new for them as well. Defensively, they are playing sound, solid football. They just let their kids go and make plays. We have to take advantage of the things they are going to give us and physically match their intensity.”

That means Snyder and his staff know what they’re up against.

“Right now, it’s more about what we do than what Merrillville does,” Snyder said. “We know what they do and how good they are. Now, it’s a matter of us making sure we can line up on offense and defense and handle our own responsibilities.

“If you can’t do those things, it doesn’t matter who you play.”

Chesterton wins if: The Trojans have to keep the Merrillville offense off the field. Chesterton has struggled finishing drives and needs to establish themselves early to prove to the Pirates, and themselves, that they can get the job done.

Merrillville wins if: The Pirates can physically dominate the Trojans. If Merrillville’s big, fast, athletic defense can control the Chesterton offense, it could be a long night for the Trojans.

 

Posted 10/13/2011