Shooting For State Titles

Chesterton Lacrosse is starting up their season with multiple games in hopes to win and advance themselves into the state tournament.


Caroline Dardeau, Editor in Sports

As the spring season approaches, the Chesterton lacrosse team is beginning to hold practices and work on skill sets that are necessary for success. The team will begin their season and based on last year’s statistics, they are predicted to do well this upcoming season. 

The girls finished off their 2021 season with a loss in sectional finals against Crown Point High School, who advanced to the state semi-finals. Placing sixth in the final state rankings, Chesterton lost three senior players, defensemen Isabella Aurcchio and Kaitlyn Papka, and goalie Delaney Bontrager. Stepping into goal this year is junior Courtney Papka, a three year varsity member who played field for most of her career. Caroline Dardeau, a returning midfield, captain, and first team all state member, is coming off of a 48 goal and 55 point season, and is ready for the challenges that this year will bring. Emma Ekblaw, Calvin College volleyball commit, was the second highest scorer of the 2021 season with 36 goals. On the field, she is very skilled at taking draws, getting possession, and wearing down the defense. Ekblaw is going into her fourth and final year of Chesterton lacrosse as a captain. 

“The sectional championship is ours this year, I am confident we can beat the teams we have lost to in the past. Overall my goal for the team this year is to have a winning record. I want to leave a legacy in the lacrosse program that will continue after I graduate. I am super excited.” Ekblaw says. 

In the midfield, Presli Rose is a senior going into her third year of Chesterton Lacrosse, and was named captain at a recent practice. She is a very well rounded and an athletic player on and off the field. She looks to improve statistically this year and remains a prominent leader for the Trojans. On the attacking end,  junior Makenna Hyska is a team oriented player passing the ball, while taking the best possible shots she receives.  Hyska was named an ‘attack field leader’ to keep the team in motion while on the field. Last season, Hyska was fourth on the team in points with 12, one behind sophomore Sophia Gudino. The only two returning defensemen are senior Hannah Hall, the ‘defensive field leader’, and sophomore Abigail Dennington, both of whom have increased pressure this season to help out new goalie, C. Papka. Papka is the third and final ‘field leader’ for the Trojans. Early on, these girls have a goal to win the Sectional Championship this year and to disprove all rankings that have them placed in second. 

The Chesterton lacrosse boys ended last season in the state’s elite eight, falling short to Hamilton Southeastern. Unfortunately, Chesterton lost eight seniors from that group, including captains Sean Dardeau, and Austin Hynote, as well as Stefan Harris, Kyle Henry, Kevin Johnston, Nicolas Kittredge, John Koch, and Miles McCready. The graduation of those players holds a much bigger impact on the boys team than it will with the girls, due to the talent and large number of athletes that were lost.

While 2021 graduated a lot of skill and talent, the 2022 version of Trojan Boys lacrosse still has a strong team ready for this season. Seniors Ian Cole and Lucas Cunningham were named captains for the 2022 season at the 2021 banquet. They have lived up to expectations so far, by getting the boys in shape during practices. Cunningham is a phenomenal defender who is incredibly hard to maneuver around. So far two seniors have committed to play in college: Cunningham is going to Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Indiana, and Kinley Hynote who will attend Indiana Institute of Technology in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The boys have a tough schedule due to their high ranking ending the 2021 season. The Trojans have high expectations for their season with a large returning class and a talented group of incoming freshmen, including semi state wrestling finalist Chase Staubus. Staubus has a reputation for his advanced skills while playing recreational league. Staubus’s older brother, Ben Staubus, played at Chesterton and in college, and will also help on this year’s coaching staff. Just like the girls, the boys also lost their goalie. Stepping into goal is Senior, Micheal “Mikey” Buckland, a first year goalie. 

Trojans lacrosse teams have a hard season ahead, but they are ready to defeat all odds. The girls first game is March 12 in Evansville, IN. They will have a three game weekend, including an overnight stay. The boys first game is March 17 at Saint Joseph High School. The schedules are located below.