The Cape Henlopen girls' basketball team sent its seniors off with a win in the final home game of their careers, topping Sussex Tech 49-45 on Senior Night, Feb. 15.
Four-year starter Kadijah Doughty has played an integral role on the Vikings' squad during her time at Cape as a towering presence under the basket, and continued her dominance on the boards against Tech, scoring 19 points and grabbing double-digit rebounds.
As one Vikings player's career winds down, another's is just beginning. Freshman Madi Smith, a new face from Downingtown, Pa., scored a career-high 23 points to lead all scorers.
"We just told her to be aggressive and look for her shot," said coach Lamont Hazzard. "In the first half, she had some good looks that were falling just short. We told her to just keep jacking them up because they were lined up."
Smith's night was highlighted by back-to-back 3-pointers with just over four minutes left in the fourth quarter that all but sealed the win for Cape.
A traditionally slow-starting team, the Vikings came out of the locker room fired up. Cape outscored the Ravens 11-6 in the first quarter, matching the second-lowest point total the Vikings allowed in the opening period this year.
"We have trouble scoring in the first quarter, so we actually play defense well enough to survive that first quarter," Hazzard said. "Those first and third quarters are horrible for us. We haven't been doing well with them all year, so that was big."
The second quarter, however, wasn't kind to the Vikings. Cape scored just five points in the period to fall behind 21-16 entering halftime. Cape came out of the locker room for the second half with as much fire as the first quarter and with four minutes left, the Vikings took a lead they would never relinquish. Cape outscored Tech 17-8 in the quarter, pushing its lead to 5 points entering the final quarter.
The lead grew to as much as 11 points, but the resilient Ravens continually battled back, and Cape settled for the four-point victory.
Doughty and Smith accounted for 42 of Cape's 49 points. Senior Jasmine Johnson scored two points in her final home game, while senior Emily Baptiste was sidelined.
The Ravens were led by senior Thomeka Floyd with 18 points. Junior Castaysha Lewis and senior Alijae Cannon each netted 10 points.
Cape traveled to 13-4 St. Elizabeth Feb. 16, where the Vikings suffered a 63-26 defeat. Madi Smith led Cape with 13 points. Doughty did not play.
Cape (5-14) will cap off its season Tuesday, Feb. 19, with a road game against Milford (9-10). The Bucs beat Cape 59-47 earlier this season. Tip-off is set for 6 p.m.