CLAYMONT – Cape Henlopen started each of the two halves in its boys lacrosse game at Archmere on April 27 the same way, with an offensive onslaught. But while the host Auks were able to mount a comeback the first time they fell behind, there would be no repeat performance in the second half as the Vikings remained unbeaten against in-state competition with a 16-7 win.
The Auks were in their familiar home white uniforms, but they had red numbers instead of green, and “PennaStrong” across the back in remembrance of Anthony Penna, who died in an automobile accident early in his junior year. He would have been a senior this year. The Anthony Penna Charitable Fund greeted fans as they entered the field.
Bright sunshine and a strong wind were the order of the day, but that didn’t seem to bother Cape, which came out on fire. It took the Vikings just 38 seconds to get on the board, as Andre Currie found the net. Archmere took the ensuing faceoff and drove, but goalie Baxter Travers was able to knock away a shot. The Vikings patiently worked the ball around the Auks’ net, and Adem Tekmen fed Henry D’Ambrogi about 15 yards in front of Auks goalie Vaughn DiBattista, and D’Ambrogi went high for the second goal.
The third Cape goal, this one from Jack Dennis, prompted an Archmere timeout, but that didn’t stop the bleeding. D’Ambrogi connected on a turnaround shot after taking the ball wide behind DiBattista for the Vikings’ fourth tally. The first period ended with two Cape goals in a 10-second span. Greg Boyce fought off a check with a nifty spin move at the 2:55 mark, and William Ott got the next one. Ott won the faceoff, ran toward the Auks’ net and had the ball knocked from his stick. It bounced in front of the net, through a few bodies and just rolled over the line. It could have been a bigger lead, but DiBattista came up with a huge save late in the first.
Down by a half dozen, the Auks turned the tables in the second quarter. Seniors Mitch Moyer and Cole Bauer teamed up for the first goal at the 10:13 mark. Moyer fed Bauer cutting across the middle, and Bauer sent a lefthanded shot low past Travers. The pair connected again three minutes later, with Bauer taking a pass, deking a defender and tucking the ball in the upper right corner.
It was Moyer’s turn to score with 4:45 left in the half. A DiBattista save started an Auks drive, which ended when Moyer took a pass in front of Travers, did a 360 and skipped one in, much to the delight of the Archmere fans. Moyer struck again 33 seconds later, picking up a loose ball and sending a bouncer in.
Tekmen struck first in the second half, fighting off several checks to score from distance. Jack Dennis got on the scoreboard with 9:43 to go, beating the goalie low to make it 8-4. D’Ambrogi’s hustle to get to a ground ball led to the next goal, as he fed Boyce from behind the net at the 7:53 mark. Nolan Collins stopped Cape’s run with a laser, but that would be as close as the Auks would get the rest of the afternoon. The Vikings led, 12-6, after three.
Moyer opened the scoring in the fourth quarter with a bouncer that made it 12-7, but that would be the Auks’ final marker. D’Ambrogi got his hat trick with 8:33 to go, taking advantage of an Archmere turnover. Boyce, Best and D’Ambrogi wrapped up the scoring as the Vikings rebounded after a loss on Thursday at Ocean City (N.J.).
D’Ambrogi led the Vikings with four goals, and Travers had 10 saves. Cape improved to 9-2 and next plays on Tuesday against Polytech at 6 p.m. at the DE Turf Sports Complex in Frederica.
Bauer and Moyer each scored three for the Auks, whose final statistics were not available. Archmere (7-2) is also back in action Tuesday, hosting Red Lion at 3:45 p.m.