LEMONT – With a 1-3 record after four weeks, the thought of having to run the table to again reach the postseason would have been a daunting one for Lemont.
So the Indians took a one step at a time approach, and after Friday’s 41-6 victory over Hillcrest, the squad has clawed their way back to the .500 mark.
“The big thing we’ve talked about the last few weeks is going 1-0 each week and not looking ahead,” said Lemont coach Eric Michaelsen. “It can be daunting if you look at it and say you have to win five games in a row.”
The next challenge for Lemont comes in the form of a Thornton Fractional North team that is better then its 2-4 record would indicate. This also marks the first of three straight road games to close out the regular season.
“TF North is incredibly talented,” the coach said. “They have led in the third quarter in all four of their losses. They’ve got skill kids that are as good as any skill kids in the conference. And they’ve got really good size.”
The Indians saw all phases of the game come together in their home finale. Most importantly, Lemont did not give the ball away while generating five Hillcrest turnovers.
“I hope they saw that if they work hard, good things will happen,” Michaelsen said of his players. “And they are starting to gain some trust in each other.”
Julie Aleman and Michael Larkins paced the offense with two rushing touchdowns apiece while quarterback Chris Thompson connected with Matt Monaco for a 16-yard score.
Senior kicker Madeleine McPartland also went 3-for-3 in extra points.
“The defense and special teams did a good job setting the offense up with good field position,” Michaelsen said, “and we were able to take advantage of that.
“Defensively, we just gave up one big play and Hillcrest has some kids who are explosive. It’s still a work in progress and we are still using different combinations of kids but Friday was a good step for the defense.”