- Lake Athletic Conference
The Lake Athletic Conference (LAC) was a high school athletic conference serving members of the
Indiana High School Athletic Association. The LAC existed in multiple guises from the fall of 1993 through the spring of 2007, at which time it comprised sixteen member high schools. The conference took its name from all its early members being located in Lake County, Indiana
The origins of the Lake Athletic Conference can be traced to the Lake Shore Conference. The Lake Shore Conference was formed in 1969 by city schools in East Chicago, Hammond, and
Whiting, Indiana. These eight schools were: East Chicago Roosevelt, East Chicago Washington, Hammond High, Hammond Clark, Hammond Gavit, Hammond Morton, Hammond Tech, and Whiting High. In 1973 Whiting left the conference. Its spot was filled by Bishop Noll Institute, a Catholic school located in Hammond. Hammond Tech was closed in 1981. In 1986 EC Roosevelt and EC Washington were merged to form East Chicago Central; this new school departed the Lake Shore Conference the following year.
The members of the Lake Shore Conference were joined by four members of the recently disbanded
Lake Suburban Conferencein the fall of 1993. The growth of Crown Point and Lake Central high schools, and their subsequent departure from the Lake Suburban Conference, left the conference's remaining members looking for a new home. Calumet High School, Griffith Senior High School, Highland High School, and Munster High Schoolmerged with the Lake Shore Conference members to form the Lake 10 Conference. Joining as the tenth school was Whiting, which had been independent since leaving the Lake Shore two decades prior.
For football, the conference was split into two divisions based on enrollment. The larger schools formed the Black Division, while the smaller schools were the Blue Division. The black teams were Bishop Noll, Hammond High, Hammond Morton, Highland, and Munster. The blue teams were Calumet, Griffith, Hammond Clark, Hammond Gavit, and Whiting. As expansion occurred, the divisions were to be used in basketball and baseball as well.
The first expansion took place for the fall of 1998. At this time the conference also changed its name to the Lake Athletic Conference. Former Lake Suburban member Lowell, along with Lake Station, joined from the shuttering Northwest Hoosier Conference. Additionally, Andrean, which had been independent for over twenty years entered the LAC. Andrean and Lowell joined the Black Division. This bumped Hammond down to the Blue Division, which now also included Lake Station.
Early in 2001 a vote by LAC members allowed for expansion to sixteen teams. This took place going into the 2003-2004 school year. Three schools became members the LAC, setting the roster for its final four years of existence. Joining the Lake Athletic Conference were Hobart, Kankakee Valley, and Wheeler. This growth also expanded membership beyond the boundaries of Lake County; Kankakee Valley is located in Jasper County and Wheeler lies in Porter County.
In 2006 it was announced the LAC would disband following the 2006-'07 school year. The schools would split into three conferences. The Northwest Crossroads Conference comprises Andrean, Griffith, Highland, Hobart, Kankakee Valley, Lowell, and Munster. The Greater South Shore Conference is home to Bishop Noll, Calumet, Lake Station, Wheeler, and Whiting; joining these schools are Michigan City Marquette, North Newton, River Forest, and South Central-Union Mills. The Hammond City Schools - Clark, Gavit, Hammond High, and Morton - formed the Great Lakes Athletic Conference, after failing to find acceptance in another conference.
^Charter member of Lake 10
*Baseball (2): 2002-Munster (4A), 2005-Andrean (3A)
*Football (3): 1997-Griffith (4A), 2004-Andrean (3A), 2005-Lowell (4A)
*Girls Gymnastics (1): 2004-Hobart
*Softball (2): 2006-Whiting (1A), 2007-Andrean (3A)
* [http://ifca.zebras.net/ifca/candler/football.htm Northern Indiana Football History]
* [http://www.ihsaa.org/main.shtm Indiana High School Athletic Association]
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