ALAPOCAS – Caravel Academy’s boys soccer team reached the Division II state championship last season, but 2016 started out with two losses. The Buccaneers were not about to watch another game fall into the loss column, as they put on a dominating performance Sept. 15 in a 4-1 win over St. Elizabeth at Alapocas Run State Park.
Caravel took control of the ball early, earning a corner kick just two minutes into the contest. The Bucs did not score, but it only took them another two minutes to go ahead. Caravel consistently played the ball into the corner to the left of Vikings keeper Ethan Downs and passed it toward the box. That is what happened in the fourth minute, as Austyn Hamilton crossed the ball to Benjamin Schwartz, who beat Downs low and to the left.
Over the next few minutes, the Buccaneers had several chances to add to the lead but could not find the net. In the eighth minute, a pass was headed wide, and that was followed by another header that missed. St. Elizabeth did manage to find its offense and get some shots on Bucs keeper Eric Fasteson, who made a pair of nice saves. The Vikings also earned three corner kicks in quick succession, none of which they converted.
Caravel picked up a corner in the 20th minute, and they did not miss. Noah Schwartz gathered the kick and knocked one high into the net.
The Buccaneers maintained the pressure into the second half, but St. Elizabeth would strike first. Martin Newswanger carried the ball near the goal line to Fasteson’s right. Fasteson came off his line, and Newswanger dribbled around him and hit the open net, bringing the Vikings to within 2-1 in the 47th minute.
On the next possession, Benjamin Schwartz took a pass from Jacob Rubini, got behind the defense and beat Downs far to the lower 90. The Buccaneers controlled possession after that, rarely allowing St. Elizabeth to get out of its own end. Hamilton scored the game’s final goal in the 66th minute.
The Vikings lost their first game after two wins. They are back on the pitch on Tuesday, hosting Newark Charter at 3:45 p.m. at Alapocas Run. Caravel (1-2) is off until Sept. 27, when Appoquinimink visits for a 7:30 p.m. start.