Amber McCaw wasn’t
about to pretend that the loss didn’t sting, but the Chesterton coach also
knew that there was a bigger picture in play following Saturday’s Class 4A
sectional title game loss to Crown Point.
In a season that
was never taken for granted, the Trojans made it back to the sectional title
match for the first time in five years and delivered the most wins the
program has had in seven years. Much like those 2013 and 2015 seasons, the
ride came to an end with a sweep against Crown Point.
The Trojans fell
25-12, 25-14, 25-15 to the Bulldogs and finished the year 21-13.
“This is the most
successful this program has been in some time,” McCaw said. “The overall
program keeps trending up. Now there are things that we know we need to work
on, but this has been a great group and we’re excited about our future.”
The Bulldogs (29-3)
unleashed an array of weapons on the Trojans from the outset of Saturday’s
title match, much like Chesterton did to Portage in the sectional semifinal
victory hours earlier. Crown Point kept the pressure on and left the
building with its fifth sectional title in six years.
McCaw wanted to
make sure her team left the building with their heads held high, especially
the senior class of Maggie Vrahoretis, Greta Tilden and Maddie Wagner.
Vrahoretis finished the match with 11 assists, six digs and an ace while
Wagner had two kills and Tilden added a dig.
“These seniors have
been such a good, hardworking group,” McCaw said. “It’s such an
accomplishment to make it all the way through a program. You start with 20
freshmen and to make it four years, that’s special. They embraced the change
with me coming in and they’ve been just a great group of girls.”
The future is
bright for the Trojans as outside hitter Meghan Gaffigan will return along
with a strong junior class including Emma Ekblaw and Ella Rodriguez. The
youth movement has also been good to Chesterton as sophomore Katie Nelson
and freshman Eva Everett got a lot of experience as underclassmen this
“Eva is just an
incredible athlete and did a lot of good things for us,” McCaw said. “We
expect her to have an even bigger role next season. We’re excited about the
future of this program.”
In the afternoon’s
semifinals, the Trojans beat Portage 28-26, 25-17, 25-13.
Gaffigan led the team with 14 kills with Vrahoretis adding eight kills and
Ekblaw tallying seven.
had 15 digs and Vrahoretis had nine digs.
25-25-25, Chesterton 12-14-15
Chesterton -- Reese
Czarniecki 3 blocks; AJ Devereaux 2 digs; Emma Ekblaw 6 kills, 1 block; Eva
Everett 4 digs; Celia Faroh 4 assists, 2digs; Meghan Gaffigan, 7 kills, 2
blocks; Katie Nelson 12 digs; 5 kills; Grace Newman 4 assists; Ella
Rodriguez 5 blocks, 3 digs; Greta Tilden 1 dig; Maggie Vrahoretis 2 kills,
11 assists, 3 blocks, 6 digs; Maddie Wagner 2 kills.
28-25-25, Portage 26-17-13
Chesterton -- Reese
Czarniecki 3 blocks, 2 digs; AJ Devereaux 6 digs; Emma Ekblaw 7 kills 4
blocks, 2 digs; Eva Everett 4 aces, 3 digs; Celia Faroh 9 assists, 2 digs;
Meghan Gaffigan 14 kills, 2 blocks, 7 digs; Katie Nelson 15 digs; Grace
Newman 5 assists, 3 digs; Ella Rodriguez 3 kills, 2 blocks, 4 digs; Brooke
Smith 1 kill; Greta Tilden 2 digs; Maggie Vrahoretis 3 aces, 8 kills, 2
blocks, 13 assists, 9 digs; Maddie Wagner 2 blocks, 1 dig.