Finally, after more than six months of waiting, high school athletics have returned to Delaware. The 2020 fall campaign was in doubt for a while, but teams and schools have spent the past several weeks gearing up to get back on the field or into the gymnasium.
As usual, The Dialog’s team of Mike Lang and Jason Winchell will cover as many of the games as they can. Many thanks to the athletic directors and administrators for allowing The Dialog to attend these events, particularly when attendance will be limited or not allowed.
With coronavirus-related concerns still front and center, dates and locations of some contests could change at the last minute.
Concord at Archmere, 3:45 p.m. The Auks open the season with the first of seven straight home games. Just two seniors graduated from last year’s squad. The Auks hope a more experienced lineup, anchored by senior goalkeeper Maura Smeader, can return to the state tournament.
Ursuline vs. St. Elizabeth, 3:45 p.m. at Serviam Field. The Vikings will be the home team on Ursuline’s field. Just two seniors are on the roster. The Raiders’ roster was not published as of the time of this post, but their young squad has gained a year of valuable experience.
MOT Charter at Saint Mark’s, 3:45 p.m. The Spartans have 10 juniors on the 21-person roster. Saint Mark’s has eight home games on the 12-game schedule, with two spectators per Spartan each time out.
Ursuline at Caravel, 6:15 p.m.
Red Lion at Archmere, 3:45 p.m.
St. Elizabeth at Saint Mark’s, 3:45 p.m.
Padua at Ursuline, 3:45 p.m. The Pandas open their quest to reach the state championship final for the third straight year. They will do so, however, with a decidedly younger roster, although Padua will still bring some firepower.
Wilmington Christian at Archmere, 11 a.m.
Saint Mark’s at A.I. DuPont, noon
Newark Charter vs. St. Elizabeth, 1 p.m. at Newark Charter
St. Elizabeth at Ursuline, 7:15 p.m. The longtime rivals begin the high school season in what should be a very competitive match. The Vikings will play a demanding schedule this season, but they are a veteran bunch. The Raiders reached the state semifinal last season, and many of their weapons are back.
Padua at Newark Charter, 3:45 p.m. A great season opener will be available via livestream only. The Pandas begin the defense of their state championship against the Patriots, who were the top seed in the state tournament in 2019. Four-year varsity player Mackenzie Sobczyk leads the way for Padua.
Wilmington Charter at Archmere, 6:15 p.m. The biggest change for the Auks may be on the sidelines, where former Ursuline assistant Brittany Biddle-Corrigan takes over the coaching duties. Despite losing some key seniors – including all-state hitter Julia Kochie – the Auks are always among the state’s best. Kochie, by the way, is now an assistant at her alma mater.
MOT Charter at St. Elizabeth, 7:15 p.m.
Delaware Military at Saint Mark’s, 7:15 p.m. The Spartans enter the season on a mission after falling in the state championship in 2019, and they have the pieces to make a run again. The roster is filled with seniors and juniors, along with one sophomore – Julia Yurkovich – who announced herself as a force last year as a freshman.
First State Military at St. Elizabeth, 4:45 p.m.
Saint Mark’s at Appoquinimink, 1 p.m.
Padua at Conrad, 1 p.m.
Salisbury Christian at Ss. Peter and Paul (0-1), 4 p.m. The Sabres are playing an abbreviated four-game schedule this season.