Sussex County Delaware

Vikings Capture
State Championship

2001 State Lacrosse ...

Cape Beats Tatnall
19-9 in Title Game

Cape Henlopen High School captured its second Delaware State Boys' Lacrosse Championship in four years with a 19-9 victory over nemesis Tatnall in the 2001 state title game on Tuesday, May 29.

The top-seeded Vikings scored the game's first seven goals en route to a 13-1 halftime lead over No. 2 Tatnall. The win at Polytech concluded the Vikings' season with a 14-3 record.

The victory avenged a 15-14 loss to Tatnall in last year's state finals and gave the school its second state championship. The Vikings also won the state title in 1998.

Senior Steve Conlon and junior Joe Vavala, freshmen on the 1998 state title team, sparked the Vikings Tuesday with five goals apiece. Fellow senior Steve Welsh added four goals and an assist and senior Joe Cahill contributed two goals and three assists.

In outshooting Tatnall 20-4 in the first half, the Vikings got on the board less than four minutes into the game on the first of Sean Meluney two goals. Cahill, Vavala and Welsh followed that goal up with goals of their own in the next three minutes for a 4-0 advantage.

By the time the first half was over, Vavala and Welsh had three goals apiece.

Tatnall managed to cut into Cape's lead in the second half but never threatened. After seeing the lead dwindle to 14-6, Conlon scored to give Cape a 15-6 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Rich Benson scored Cape's other goal and goalie Steve Spence kept Tatnall in check with 12 saves.

Cape advanced to the championship game on a goal by Rich Benson with 6 seconds left in a 12-11 semifinal victory over rival Caesar Rodney on Wednesday, May 23.

The Vikings' sixth straight win over fifth-seeded CR didn't come easily. The Vikings actually trailed 11-7 late in the third period before storming back with four goals.

Steve Welsh capped the rally with a goal with 3:59 left to tie the score 11-11. The Vikings then survived a point-blank shot by CR's Josh Coveleski with 20 seconds left when goalie Steve Spence blocked the shot with his legs.

The Vikings quickly moved the ball upfield as Welsh raced up the left side to pass to Benson, who beat a defender and zipped his shot into the bottom right corner of the net from 10 feet away.

Benson scored three goals in the game. Steve Conlon led the Vikings in scoring with four goals and an assist. Joey Cahill registered two goals and five assists and Welsh and Kip Marshall added goals. Spence posted 9 saves.

In the quarterfinals, Cape routed Sanford 15-4 in the on Saturday, May 19.

The Vikings pulled away from Sanford in the second quarter of the game at Wesley College. Cape broke open a 2-1 contest after the first period with six goals in the second quarter to lead 8-2 at halftime.

Senior attack Joey Cahill sparked the Vikings with four goals and seven assists. Junior Rich Benson contributed four more goals. Other multiple-goal scorers for the Vikings were Steve Conlon with three goals and four assists, Steve Welsh with two goals and two assists, and Joe Vavala with two goals and one assist.

Cape outshot Sanford 39-10. Viking goalie Steve Spence made four saves.

Salesianum, the tournament's 11th seed, upset No. 3 Brandywine 7-5 in its quarterfinal. Tatnall beat No. 7 A.I. DuPont, 17-11, in its quarterfinal.

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