Beach Blast lacrosse tournament a wicked success

Wicked Witch Showcase coming to Cape Oct. 27
Rachel Florek, ESLC goalie of the 2016 team and Stephen Decatur student, makes a save versus a team from Long Island.Tess Bernheimer, 13, provides backup. BY DAVE FREDERICK
July 1, 2013

The 2013 Beach Blast Invitational girls' lacrosse tournament held June 28 to 30 at Cape Henlopen High School welcomed 104 teams from Michigan, Colorado, Ohio, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Delaware and other places. All you had to do was follow the changing accents and you were embedded into an alien culture club of girls' lacrosse juggernauts. Long Island must have been empty. Lots of stellar teams came from that neighborhood with relatives crowding the sidelines and they are all in the game.

This is the second year for the tournament with Sue Murphy and Courtney Vaughn as directors.

Murphy is known by everybody who’s anybody or nobody throughout the world of college and high school women’s lacrosse. She has coached Oberlin, Boston University, Richmond and the U.S.A. Developmental Team.

Courtney Vaughn is a veteran high school coach at Winters Mill, Md.

The 104 teams are guaranteed at least four games. That’s 416 games over three days on seven fields. There is only one horn to signal the starts and ends of halves and games. Each game is two 25-minute periods.

‘Each team pays a $1,300 registration fee,” Murphy said. “We filled out a facilities use form, and when it’s all over the Cape district will bill us."

That’s $135,000 gross revenue just on registration fees, but each of 416 games has two working officials, many of them college caliber, and there are four trainers on site as well as custodians, rescue people and even webmasters. That's a lot of overhead.

“We know coach Kesmodel of Cape, who helped us with the idea of this tournament," Murphy said. “The economic impact for the local community we conservatively estimate at 2 million dollars. The word is out, and teams want to come here. It is the perfect venue and location, and the people are so nice. “

The Wicked Witch Lax Fest will be held at Cape on Sunday, Oct. 27, in what Murphy called a same-day showcase.

“The sport of girls' lacrosse has exploded all over the country, including colleges starting new programs,” Murphy said. “There are just so many opportunities for these girls and coaches to come to tournaments and find each other.”