Week 8 - Football Game of the Week Preview

Chesterton (2-5) at
Crown Point (3-4) 

A USA-365.com Special Report by Mark Smith
10-04-2018
 
There's gong to be a lot of running the football this Friday at the CP-Chesterton game, and that's probably with Crown Point's senior Scott Mills (22), who scored two TDs last week in the Bulldogs' win over LaPorte. (Photos by Mark Smith)

When:  Friday, October 5, 2018.

Where:  Crown Point High School - One mile south of the CP downtown square at 1500 South Main Street, Crown Point, IN 46307.

TV/Radio/Internet:  The only live outlet for this game is the Internet audio stream on www.USA-365.com.

TICKETS:
$6

ENROLLMENT:
CROWN POINT - 2,805; CHESTERTON - 2,063.

WEATHER:
An odd week. Warm on Wednesday. Cold on Thursday. Friday? What do I know? The forecast is for temperatures in the upper 60s by game time. But it might rain. This is the final home game for CP during the regular season and the Bulldogs can't play at home again (6A teams get a bye on Oct. 19) until at least, Oct. 26. Friday is CP’s homecoming game so this is a good night to come out and support the home team.

 

PARKING: Chesterton isn’t bringing a large crowd, so there’s plenty of room for you at CPHS Friday. Homecoming is the night for the non-football fan and, if you come out for the first time this season, the lack of a mob of visitors from Porter County should make this a very roomy, comfortable night out behind the high school.

 

WHAT's AT STAKE: Nothing. Neither of these teams can finish in first place or in last place. For Crown Point seniors, this could be their last home game, depending on the state tournament pairings, which will be announced this Sunday.
CP boys have a chance to get back to the .500 mark as well.

 

The HISTORY:

Chesterton – The history of Chesterton high school football comes down to one line. In the 32 years that Chesterton has been in the IHSAA state tournament, they have never won a sectional championship. They won't win one any time soon. Why?

The main reason is: The Trojans have always been in the same sectional with bigger, stronger schools. Chesterton (2,063 teenagers) has a few too many students. LaPorte (1,876) and Michigan City (1,681) has just enough kids to be in Class 5A, but not enough to be in the 32-team Class 6A bracket.

In 5A, Michigan City and LaPorte face schools that are virtually ’their size’ and the result is LaPorte reached the Class 5A state finals in 2015. Michigan City reached the Class 5A semistate championship in 2017. Chesterton has to defeat consistent powers Valparaiso (2,150) and Penn (3,330) just to get out of Class 6A Sectional 2. Among 6A schools Chesterton (2,063) would have to defeat at the semistate are Homestead (2,379), Noblesville (2,976) and Carmel (5,033).

Where are the schools that are smaller than Chesterton? In Class 6A? There are only three that I can find. Columbus North (2,017), Jeffersonville (2,066), and (Lafayette) Jefferson (2,031). Chesterton would have to reach the state finals to see Columbus North or Jeffersonville. Chesterton vs. Jefferson could occur at the semistate but don't wait for it.

The playoff classifications are re-done every two years and 2019 is the next time. What could change?

Chesterton (2,063) has 187 students more than LaPorte, the largest 5A school. If LaPorte somehow is judged to have more kids, Chesterton drops to 5A where they can compete. A less helpful scenario would have LaPorte (1,876) grow beyond Columbus North (2,017), making North a 5A school and LaPorte 6A. That would put LaPorte and Chesterton in the same sectional (Sectional 2) and bump Penn east to 6A Sectional 3. Chesterton would have a much better chance in sectional play.

Another eventual factor will be the consolidation of 5A schools Elkhart Central (1,837) and Memorial (1,634) that has been approved with no exact timeline. The new Elkhart high will obviously be a 6A school which will push Chesterton one step towards Class 5A where they belong.

Until something positive happens in their situation, Trojan football will continue to be overmatched in the post-season, making the singular triumphs and failures in the regular season carry so much more weight.

 

Duneland Athletic Conference (DAC)

1. Valparaiso (5-0) 5-2
2. Michigan City (4-1) 5-2
3. Merrillville (3-2) 4-3
4. Portage (3-2) 4-3
5. CROWN POINT (2-3) 3-4
6. LaPorte (2-3) 2-5
7. Chesterton (1-4) 2-5
8. Lake Central (0-5) 2-5

9-28-18 = WEEK 7
Chesterton 15, Lake Central 0
Michigan City 49, Portage 14
Valparaiso 20, Merrillville 6
CROWN POINT 24, LaPorte 21

10-5-18 = WEEK 8
Lake Central (2-5) at Merrillville (4-3)
LaPorte (2-5) at Michigan City (5-2)
Portage (4-3) at Valparaiso (5-2)
Chesterton (2-5) at CROWN POINT (3-4)

10-12-18 = WEEK 9
Valparaiso (5-2) at Lake Central (2-5) Merrillville (4-3) at Chesterton (2-5)
LaPorte (2-5) at Portage (4-3)
CROWN POINT (3-4) at Michigan City (5-2)
*End of the regular season*

 

DAC COMMENTS: If Valparaiso defeats Portage this week, we’ll have the first place Vikings against last place Lake Central on the final Friday night of the regular season. Valparaiso was 6-1 and first place in DAC play in 2017. Crown Point and LaPorte were 6-1 in the DAC in 2016. Michigan City plays LaPorte this Friday and they could draw LaPorte again in the sectional semifinals on October 26. To avoid going 0-7 in league play, Lake Central has two choices: Beat Merrillville (5-2) or beat Valparaiso (5-2).


(6A) Chesterton (2-5)
4-6 (2017), 2-8 (2016), 8-3 (2015), 6-5 (2014)
Coach Mark Peterson (26-34) 6th year, DAC games in CAPS

8-17 (L) 9-10 at (4A) Hobart (6-1)
8-24 (W) 31-0 at (5A) Munster (1-6)
9-1 (L) 10-28 (5A) MICHIGAN CITY (5-2)
9-7 (L) 14-29 at (5A) LaPORTE (2-5)
9-14 (L) 0-23 at (6A) VALPARAISO (5-2)
9-21 (L) 14-20 (6A) PORTAGE (4-3)
9-28 (W) 15-0 at (6A) LAKE CENTRAL (2-5)
10-5 (Fri) at (6A) CROWN POINT (3-4)
10-12 (Fri) (6A) MERRILLVILE (4-3)

Class 6A Sectional 2
10-26 (Fri) vs. Penn (6-1), Warsaw (6-1), or Valparaiso (5-2)

 

CHESTERTON Update:

CHESTERTON -
The Trojans had to get a boost from the 15-0 win over Lake Central last week. Bryce Pickering gained 115 yards on 24 carries and he’ll be on the move at Crown Point Friday behind veteran offensive linemen Riley Wologo (6-2, 305), AJ Waugarman (6-2, 255) and Charlie Bernth (6-5, 230).

Quarterback Cory Boren (5-11, 188) has struggled. The Trojans average 13.3 points per game. Even in victory last week they turned the ball over three times. The Trojans’ defensive record may be a tad misleading and it may not be. They have shut out Lake Central (2-5) and Munster (1-6). In four other games Chesterton allowed 20 points or more.

But let the record show, they led 5A No. 10 Michigan City at the half before losing 28-10 and they went into overtime before losing 20-14 to Portage. Linebacker Kody Wilkerson (6-2, 220) leads the defense with defensive lineman Karan Singh (5-11, 205) and cornerback Max Rodriguez (6-1, 170).

Wilkerson, who also plays fullback, is a big factor. He had 104 tackles last season. The Trojans placed a lot of different defensive fronts against Lake Central. Some five-man lines and some three man lines with three linebackers. Chesterton may not have great speed, but I don’t know how many teams have overpowered them at the line of scrimmage this year.

Another big plus for Chesterton is senior Chris VanEekeren who has booted field goals of 23, 29, 32 and 43 yards. Chesterton has 93 points and Van Eekeren has four field goals and 11 of 11 on extra points. The Trojans can win a game in the final seconds with a long kick.


(6A) Crown Point (3-4)
7-5 (2017) 6-6 (2016), 1-9 (2015), 8-2 (2014)
Coach Kevin Enright (7th year) 39-32

8-17 (L) 7-17 (4A) Lowell (6-1)
8-24 (W) 14-10 at (4A) Highland (4-3)
8-31 (L) 21-26 at (6A) MERRILLVILLE (4-3)

9-7 (W) 21-3 (6A) LAKE CENTRAL (2-5)
9-14 (L) 12-14 (6A) PORTAGE (4-3)
9-21 (L) 7-38 at (6A) VALPARAISO (5-2)

9-28 (W) 24-21 at (5A) LaPORTE (2-5)
10-6 (Fri) (6A) CHESTERTON (2-5)
10-13 (Fri) at (5A) MICHIGAN CITY (5-2)

6A State tournament
10-27 (Fri) vs. Portage (4-3), Lake Central (2-5) or MERRILLVILLE (4-3)

 

CROWN POINT -Update:
 
CROWN POINT –
Crown Point got a much needed victory last week, holding on to win 24-21 at LaPorte even though they were outgained 341-188. Senior halfback Scott Mills gained a season-high 195 yards and two touchdowns on 28 carries and linebacker Ethan Potosky (6-0, 190) was in on 18 tackles (11 solo tackles) plus a fumble recovery.

LaPorte’s 341 yards rushing on 53 carries was a season high against the Bulldogs. Sophomore quarterback Will Pettit was 9-of-19 for 77 yards but no interceptions. Junior tight end Ben Uran caught four passes for 47 yards and his first career TD.

The Bulldogs have gained field position on kickoff returns, where Railaun Cosey has run back 12 for 309 yards (25.8 per return) and on punt returns, where senior Trevor Bieszczat has run back six kicks for 31 yards (10.3 avg).

Last week the Bulldogs ran the ball 33 times and threw 19 times. That is probably the percentage (about 60-40) that CP wants to have every night.


CHESTERTON (2-5) at CROWN POINT (4-3)

Crown Point Bulldog Field: capacity 4,800

 

SAGARIN RATINGS: Chesterton by 1.


A one point spread is a tie game in computer-world. Chesterton lost the opener to Class 4A Hobart (6-1) the same night that CP lost to 4A Lowell (6-1). Crown Point is 2-3 in Duneland Athletic Conference (DAC) play while Chesterton is 1-4. But the Trojans have already faced Valparaiso (5-2) and Michigan City (5-2), where CP plays at Michigan City next week. Both teas have lost to Merrillville, Valpo and Portage. Both have defeated LC. That’s why this is considered an even drag race on the internet superhighway. For the record, the computer said that LaPorte would beat Crown Point by one last week and CP won 24-21.

 

WHAT WILL HAPPEN:

CROWN POINT (10-05-2018)
Both teams are coming off a victory and both certainly have been better defensively than they have been on offense. That continues here in a scoreless first quarter.

Chesterton takes the lead on a second quarter field goal by Chris Van Eekeren and it's 3-0 at halftime. CP takes advantage of a fumble to score on a short drive with Scott Mills getting into the and zone in the third quarter.

Both defenses dominate into the fourth quarter and a CP punt return sets up Jack Mumaugh for a fourth quarter field goal. CP scores in the final minutes after a turnover on downs. Both of these teams stop what the other does on offense so any more scoring than this would be a surprise. But CP should be encouraged by the offense they showed last week. The Bulldogs get back to the .500 mark with a home win in week eight.
 


CROWN POINT 16, CHESTERTON 3

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Revised: October 04, 2018 .