May 12, 2006
The Cape Henlopen High School golfers all had pretty much the same stunned expression on their faces as they heard the final score in their May 10 match against Indian River.
They had just lost for the third straight day of competition, and this time by only two points, 168-170.
To some extent, the first two losses of the tourney-filled week were expected. They faced Dover and Sussex Tech, and both schools had usually posted better team scores than Cape in the matches leading up to this week’s rounds.
The Vikings traveled to Maple Dale Country Club on Monday, May 8, and lost 166-175.
The one bright spot was that Samantha Purple tied with two Senators for co-medalist honors with her 41.
If Purple could have held it together for the last hole, she would have taken the individual prize outright, although the team would most likely still have lost.
She came to the par-5 9th hole only one over par for the day, but then drove her tee shot into the pond. She hit a good recovery, but her next shot found a greenside bunker. Purple took two shots to leave the sand, and ended up with a 9 for the hole.
She remained fairly upbeat about her round, however. “I birdied the 6th hole, and made a lot of pars,” she smiled.
Jason Hastings shot a 42 and said, “I was behind a lot of trees today. I had to punch out on 2, 4, 5, and 6. I putted good.”
Explaining his 46, Travis Parker said simply, “Me and this course don’t get along. I also snapped my driver shaft somehow, so that didn’t help.”
Andrew Parsell completed the team scoring with another 46. “I had two pars, and some trouble chipping,” he said.
The team next hosted the Sussex Tech Ravens at Rehoboth Beach Country Club on Tuesday, May 9, and lost 160-180. Coach Claudio Smarelli said they played the back nine instead of the front, and some of the kids had trouble adjusting.
Tech’s Jesse Kitchen shot a 34 for medalist honors, while Parker was best among the Vikings with his 42. Hastings and Parsell both scored 45s, and Alex Hatter and Purple tied for fourth place on the squad with their 48s.
The Vikings were more optimistic about their chances against Indian River, as they returned to Rehoboth CC for the May 10 match. Several players seemed pretty stung by the two-point loss.
Hastings was most upset by his triple bogey on the newly renovated and reopened par-3 5th hole, which helped boost his score to a 44. “I skulled my pitching wedge across the hole and into the water behind it.” He wasn’t too happy about his double on the par-4 2d hole, either, although there his ball landed in a tough spot in a greenside bunker.
Hatter had one of his best competitive rounds of the year with his 41. “I birdied both par 3s and had a couple pars. I played much better today.”
Parker also birdied the 5th hole. “I have good karma on that hole. I always birdie that one.” He also parred the 7th and 8th holes, which helped bring his total to 44 strokes.
Purple shot another 41, but this time her scoring was more evenly spread out among the holes. “I birdied the [par-4] 6th hole, and had doubles on the 4th and 8th holes, and a couple bogeys. It was a solid round, I guess.”
Along with the rest of the team’s scoring, however, it just wasn’t enough to bring Cape another victory.
At 7-4, the team is coming close to the 9-6 win/loss record set by the 1999 squad, the last time the Vikings lost more than three matches in a season.
The team was to play Polytech on May 11 at Kings Creek Country Club, and has two non-conference matches remaining before the May 23 conference meet and the state championships May 30-31. They host Hodgson Vo-Tech on May 18 at Rehoboth Beach, and then travel to Delcastle Golf Course to play the tough Salesianum team.