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Cape cross country has a long tradition of success

Teams open season Saturday at Lake Forest Invitational
September 6, 2019

Cape cross country is cross generational - Cape was a great place to run long before 5Ks, marathons, the trail system and crosswalks filled up the village. The Vikings of 2019 have 36 boys and 15 girls out for cross country. The boys won state championships in 1977, 1979, 1982, 1992 and 2001. The girls won the title in 1999. Racing over hill and dale is the simplest and purest of sports. The place you finish is your number. Teams are seven runners; the top five scores count and the next two displace other runners. Low score wins. The idea is to pack run, which sounds simple, except some of the better runners go out hard and stay there. No one photographs more races and runners than I do. The difference is the high school pack goes from real fast to just regular fast. Back in fall 1979, Cape won state titles in field hockey, cross country and football. Cape was always a happening place and still is; it’s just happening to five times more people. We do like our sports and fitness, which sometimes connect with the craft beer culture. See you pale runners at the next Dogfish Dash 8K.    

One-under par trio - Ricky Simms, Dan Catts and Mike Mulligan, all one-under par at 71 years old, finished the Rylie’s Dog Days of Summer 5K together on Labor Day. I was wondering what the heck they were doing. Dan Catts described the moment as the boys from the hood rumbled past my camera, “Antiques Roadshow!” But what would our local guys bring at auction? I’ll have to ask Muppet Butch Emmert. 

We talkin’ practice squad - David Sills, the free agent wide receiver All-American out of West Virginia and Red Lion Christian, signed with and was then cut by the Buffalo Bills. He has been signed to the practice squad of the New York Giants. Practice squad players can make $8,000 a week the 17 weeks of the regular season. I am on the record expecting Sills to emerge as a prime-time player. Alex Ellis, out of Delmar, has been signed to the Eagles practice squad.

Roster rovers - Four skill position football players who were on the Cape roster at some point are now on the rosters at three different schools. Jo Jo Kirby, a senior, is a free safety and running back at Archbishop Carroll out of Northeast Washington in D.C. The Lions have already played two games and are 1-1. They lost to Bullis 35-33. Bullis is coached by Pat Cilento, son of Cape Athletic Director Bob Cilento. Marcus Robinson is listed as a junior wide receiver and linebacker on the Salesianum roster. Hunter Simmons, from Cape to IMG Academy, is now a senior kicker for Salesianum. Sam Jones is on the roster at Sussex Central, listed as a junior quarterback and linebacker. 

Snippets - Hannah Pepper is the new head coach of Mariner field hockey. George Pepper is a volunteer coach. Rebecca Pepper is the field hockey head coach at Milford Middle school. The two schools do not play each other this season. Kay Miller returns as head coach of Beacon field hockey with Lynn Richardson joining her staff as an assistant. Robert Mitchell (Cape), a 6-foot-4, 310-pound junior, started at center for North Carolina Central Saturday, as the Eagles lost to Austin Peay 41-10. Tyre Maull, 6-foot-1, 285 pounds, is ready to start his senior season along the offensive line for the Steven Mustangs, opening Sept. 6 at Curry College. Sports fans often ask me, “What about Cape football? How good is the team going to be this season?” I take a deep breath and posture like I actually have insight before saying, “I have no idea. It aIl depends on the people they are playing.” If Cape wins twice as many games as last year, they win two. Have to win six times more for a winning record. Every game they can fight for and win will be magical. It all begins at Legends Stadium Friday night versus a St. Georges team pundits are predicting to be in the top 10 statewide in Division I. It is going to be a tough journey. I hope they win them all. Cape hockey opens the season Friday at DE Turf playing Notre Dame Prep of Maryland at 6:30 p.m. Then the Vikings will play South River of Annapolis on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. Starting for Cape are: goalie Marlee Geppert; defenders, Ella Rishko, Anna Stancofski and Emma Duffield; midfielders, Noelle Sabbagh, Sam Connors, Reagan Ciabattoni and Emily Monigle; and forwards Cami Smith, Abby Kane with Lee Wilson and Haley Craig alternating as the third forward. Go on now, git!