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January 16, 1998     Cape Gazette
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January 16, 1998

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CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, January 16- Jatt 22,1998 - 79 Dave Frederick photos Cape football awards presented Cape Henlopen High School's football boosters held their recognition banquet on Sunday, Jan. 11, in the cafeteria. Players, coaches, parents, friends and administrators gath- ered to celebrate the best season in years and to recognize the efforts of those who made it happen. Two highlights of the evening were the presentation of the Sam Russell Award and the Aurelio "Reds" Maestri Award. Deshon James (above) received the "Reds" Award for his contributions to the team's successful spirit. That award recognizes the mem- ory of "Reds" Maestri whose enthusiasm and support of Cape's football teams was intense and steady. Head Coach Brian Donahue presented the award to James. Theron Pavlik received the 44th Annual Sam Russell Award for self- less dedication to the team's success. The award, established by Sam Russell Sr. in memory of his son, a Lewes High School football standout, was presented by Sam Russell Sr.'s grand- sons, Russell Small, left, and Steve Small, right. Carl Floyd received the team's Most Valuable Player award. Mary Beaman photo Milton Middle falls to Dover Middle' Omar Johnson (in the top position), wrestling for Milton Middle School, pinned his Dover Central Middle School oppo- nent in a match at Milton on Monday, Jan. 12. Despite John- son's effort, Dover won the match by a score of 59-30. Cape Henlopen's 1997 Football Season An improbable journey to an unlikely destination No one would have guessed back in July That in August we would say goodbye to Glenn and Kai-- Several players were depressed, thinking the team wouldn't go far, And there were rumors of a mass exodus to the land of CR. A brief period of mourning while athletes confronted their fears, But there's a basic rule in sports - you don't play with the people that ain't here. Coach D just had to take over, all the parents did shout, To which the 14-year assistant replied, "Hey, what's that all about?" Coach Gep was back on the sidelines coming out of the stands. "I'll do whatever you want, coach, just let me call the plays with my hands." There was Little Fred and Big Ed, Hull, Mat- tioni and Gureau. And a black spiritual leader, the Reverend Fredman Two. Everyone held their breath as the team offense was put in Pav's hands, That big old country boy looking like the Marlboro Man. The summer scrimmages Cape "whupped up" on Lake and Middletown, By attacking through the air and assaulting on the ground. A hard-nosed defense that gave offenses fits Sent running backs to the bench, victims of Cape's greatest hits. Opening night against the River and Division l prospect Blake. But after 42 points by Cape's offense, re- porters couldn't find Blake with a rake. Worthy, Floyd and James just the first wave of backs, Altering the muscles of the Indians to include mud and cleat tracks. Arcadia can "git ya" but no one paid attention to those words, Until late in the fourth quarter when the an- nouncer cheered, "Let's Go, Firebirds." Casey Sheehan caught a T.D. running back- ward and falling into the endzone. But it was an interception by the streak Malik that sent us victoriously back home. A steamy hot Saturday when athletic Pleas- antville crossed the Delaware Bay. After dunking Cape in the Slam, the Jersey boys would have to pay. The dreaded option game just could not be found. When the defense hit the quarterback the en- tire offense just fell down. Injured Pleasantville defensive players after every Cape offensive play, "Thanks for coming over fellas, and y'all have a nice day." We should have beaten Central, all the whiners would moan. But in the post-season throw-down, the Gold- en Knights of Georgetown stayed home. Graviet picked up that fumble, looking like a loaded diesel tractor on the turnpike. Larry Oliver was so stoked he gave the pigskin a spike. The ball hit the turf and bounced high into the sky, As Coach yelled at Larry, "Don't be that guy!" Coach was paranoid of Sussex Tech knowing the Ravens were not as bad as they seemed-- With Randy O'Neill at the controls and a de- fensive line that submarined. "We can't block them," said Travis and Wrix, "they just burrow into the ground. Like they lost a pair of contacts that cannot be found." "Hey, hey just get off the line and backs hold onto the ball, And when you hear the word 'squat' remem- ber it's a defensive call." "Thud, Thud," in the first half, were the only offensive sounds, To which Matt Kreitzer exclaimed, "I kick a touchdown!" The Seaford victory was filled with highs and lows. But thanks to Oliver's drive-by, the game was missed by Pigelow. Elax Woods was the man with the goods, the Seaford announcer would sing. But Cape planned those long runs so the full- back would pop his hamstring. But late in the game when it was gut-check time, Carl Floyd disappeared and squirted loose be- hind his offensive line. "You're the best back I've seen," said Bluejay defensive coordinator Dunn. "It's hard enough to find you, plus you can run." The PolyTech Panthers came to town and played like big, neutered cats. Worthy walked in on a reverse as they all screamed, "Hey, where's he at?" Five touchdowns for Elijah, who didn't really have to try; The next week Coveleski asked ,"Hey, where did you get this little Worthy guy?" Now somewhere over Seaford with Cape solidly in the conference hunt Emerged ice-water O.J. running back punts. O.J. preferred running over opponents and dishing out licks, Causing sidelines reporters to shudder, "That boy is plain sick." Wilson started on O against the Riders in a new backfield scheme After James lost a one-on-one battle to the Homecoming Queen. The game was a domination after years of frustration, But turnovers kept CR from total humiliation. Coveleski said, "Cape deserves to beat us cause they controlled our line. And backers Moore and Burton made tackles sideline to sideline." Dover blew in with a storm talking big noise, Confident of spoiling the dream season of the hometown boys. Dover had talent and size, a combination coaches dread, Thank God they also liked to play beneath their heads. A game of field position played close to the vest, Blown open in the second half proving Cape is the best. The first conference title since 1984 and a berth in the post-season. Players and coaches believing in each other - that is the reason. A tuneup victory over upstate Dickinson im- pressed the homecoming crowd in the stands. Cape's got the whole package, including cheerleaders and the band. Deep into the third quarter, Newark leading only by six, Floyd squirted loose to the 20, behind Graviet, Travis and Wrix. But not on this night, it just wasn't to be, As Newark gained new respect for the Vikings by the sea. One of the best teams ever in Cape's 30 years. Let's hope you all learned a lesson in con- fronting your fears. Teachers, parents and coaches can take you for the ride, But individual success comes from reaching inside. DAVE FREDERICK