The Cape Senior League Baseball All-Stars trailed 3-1 July 27 when they entered their last at bats against a Naamans team that had sent them downtown to the losers' bracket in the first place. A weather app wasn’t needed to realize the forecast was bleak. But six runs and a 7-3 win set up a winner-take-all showdown July 28 at the same Camden field where Cape lost a state title to Dover three years ago on a two-out dinger in the seventh off the bat of Nick Spadafino. The karma was creepy.
The Vikings scored 11 in the top of the first and three more in the second inning on a three-run bomb off the bat of Ben Lewis to lead 14-0 after two innings and go on to win 15-3 in a five-inning game. That made 20 unanswered runs in three innings over two games, prompting manager Richard Carey to say, “That’s just Little League baseball," or just crazy if you’re a sports psychologist.
The Delaware state title was the first for a Cape Senior League team, which travels to the Eastern Regional Tournament at Union Field in West Deptford, N.J. The regionals are July 31-Aug. 6. Lose two and hit “reverse directions” on the TomTom, but win and it's World Series time.
Cape, now listed as Delaware, plays Friday, Aug. 1, against the winner of Rhode Island and host NJ-15. If the boys are fortunate and good enough to win, they will pick up the winner of Maryland and Pennsylvania. Other states in the tournament are Connecticut, Maine, New Jersey, New York and Massachusetts.
Will Jarrell was in complete control pitching the championship game and left two batters shy of a complete game to keep his pitch count down so he could start the regional opener. Anthony Hitchcock came in to shut it down and be the beacon for the charge-the-mound frenzy. All that was missing was Wally Townsend and Mickey the Bulldog chasing the banner around the outfield.
The 11-run first inning got started with a Noah Piper walk, a Kyle Lux single and an RBI single by Richard Carey. Drew Mulcahy and Jarrell walked, and it was 2-0 Cape.
Ryan Meade sent a shot to third for a force at third by a throwaway to first, chased two runs home and it was 4-0. Noah Clifton ripped an RBI double making it 5-0. Noah Piper batted the second time, hit a sac fly to left to make it 6-0. Kyle Lux stroked a two-run double, making it 8-0. Drew Mulcahy doubled home a pair and later scored on a passed ball, closing out an 11-run first inning.
"This is a good group of players; we have about eight kids who can pitch, so we’re set as good as anyone to play tournament ball. And you saw tonight everybody can hit the baseball," said manager Carey.
A team that was down two runs with three outs to go for elimination and came back to score 20 unanswered runs will live a long time along tailgate row.