Chesterton Tribune



Trojan Girls outlast Valpo for soccer sectional title

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Re-starts account for the majority of goals in soccer matches.

As well as the Chesterton girls soccer team has played this season, coach Jason Conway figures the Trojans would be an exception to that rule.

"We haven’t necessarily been doing as well on them as we probably should be,” Conway said.

Chesterton picked the right time to get it right Saturday against Valparaiso in the Class 3A Portage Sectional Final as the Trojans scored twice on free kicks and connected on a corner kick at 2:01 of overtime to edge the Vikings 3-2.

“We worked on set pieces this week,” Conway said. “For us to score all three goals off of them is amazing. It was huge getting that goal into the wind. Then we didn’t have to necessarily worry about trying to score. We’ll take goals any way we can get them.”

Olivia Hansen headed in Courtney Krol’s corner kick to break a 2-2 tie.

“It was just me wanting it,” said the 5-foot-1 Hansen. “Courtney plays perfect corners. She’s been saying all season, we’ve got to get on the end of it. We’ve been putting in the work all week at practice. We lost (to Valpo) last year and we didn’t want to feel that again. We wanted it so bad.”

Conway had high praise for Hansen and not just for her offense.

“Liv Hansen plays much bigger than her stature,” Conway said. “She’s the one on the team we look to for energy. She doesn’t necessarily have all the stats, but more importantly, she sets the tone for the way we want everyone else to be playing. We play as Liv Hansen plays. She’s the kid who makes the rest of us go. We need that from her.”

The Vikings, working with the wind in the second half, pulled even on an Olivia Shaw shot from outside the box at 46:40. They continued to pepper the net, hitting the crossbar once and keeping Molly McLaughlin busy between the pipes, but couldn’t break the deadlock.

“Valpo had momentum in the second half,” Conway said. “We felt good at the half having a 2-1 lead. We had a lot of conversation about them having the wind and that we’d have to defend well, but I don’t feel like we defended our best in the second half. Molly has played a lot of soccer at a high level so she’s used to a lot of pressure. Her poise is so wonderful and we’re thankful for the crossbar and maybe a goal post.”

Chesterton scored its first goals on free kick rebounds off the gloves of Valpo keeper Courtney Thomas. The Trojans took a 1-0 lead 22:54 in when Krol’s long drive caromed back to Madi Callaway for the close-range finish.

After the Vikings tied the match, the Trojans (16-3) regained the edge in the 35th minute on a similar play. This time, Krol’s boot deflected to Addy Joiner on the right side of the goal. Her shot was wide, but Brinley Fowler was alone on the back side to clean it up.

"Valpo’s a great team,” Conway said. “They’re so talented. It’s horrible that somebody has to lose.”

The Trojans also edged Valpo 2-1 in overtime during the regular season.

IHSAA Sectional


Chesterton 3, Valparaiso 2 (OT)

Chesterton -- Madi Callaway 1 goal; Brinley Fowler 1 goal; Olivia Hansen 1 goal; Courtney Krol 2 assists; Addy Joiner 1 assist; Molly McLaughlin 8 saves.

Valparaiso -- Claire Brogan 1 goal; Olivia Shaw 1 goal; Annelise Rubin 1 assist; Courtney Thomas 5 saves.

Records -- Chesterton 16-3; Valparaiso 10-5-2.




Posted 10/9/2017




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