CLAYMONT — Archmere’s boys lacrosse team stayed with Cape Henlopen on March 31 in a battle of two of the state’s best teams, but a big third quarter provided the boost the Vikings needed in a 13-8 win over the Auks.
Much of the contest was played in a light rain, but that did little to deter the teams. C.J. Fritchman was outstanding on faceoffs, taking 16 of 21 in the game, and that helped Cape get off to a stellar start. Fritchman won the opening draw, and 44 seconds into the game, Jacob Schell cut right to left across the crease and fired in one of his five goals.
Vikings goalie Mason Trench, a freshman, kept the Auks off the board with several stand-up saves. One of those came against Drew Duncan of the Auks, who found himself all alone on net.
Two goals in a 23-second span later in the first made it 4-0. The Auks finally got on the board with 2:03 to go when Duncan intercepted an outlet pass, moved on Trench and sent a low shot into the twine. Each team scored once more in the first, with Archmere’s second goal coming on a shot that crossed the line a fraction of a second before the quarter ended.
Nearly four minutes elapsed in the second before a goal was scored. That one was courtesy of Alex Starnes of the Auks, who had a shot stopped. The rebound, however, bounced toward Starnes, who had never stopped moving forward. He scooped up the reboundand fired high into the net. The Vikings’ lead had been cut to just one.
Cape took an 8-5 lead into halftime, and they put the game out of reach after the break. Luke Burton scored on a jumping, turning attempt at minute and a half in. The other four goals came in the last four minutes and 23 seconds.
Trench made some key stops to keep Cape’s lead safe well into the fourth. Dan Kupiec scored at the 7:42 mark on a nice deke in front of the goalie, but the next goal would not come until just 2:14 remained on the clock.
Schell finished with five goals, while Burton had three. Trench stopped 13 shots. Cape (4-0) will play La Salle College High School on Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. at Washington College in Chestertown, Md.
For the Auks, Duncan had three goals, while Kupiec and Starnes each had a pair. Gianni Bifferato had eight saves. Archmere (3-1) will host Salesianum on Wednesday at 4 p.m.
All photos by Jason Winchell.