Cape girls’ basketball wins Henlopen Conference Championship

February 26, 2023

Cape senior guard Ja’Onna Lee had missed nine shots in a row (0-for-5 from the field and 0-for-4 from the foul line), so she was apologizing to her coach and to her bench as she walked up the court to go to the line with Cape ahead by two and just 19.2 seconds left in the Henlopen Conference Championship. Coach Pat Woods said, “You’ve got this shot; forget about all of the other ones. You’ve got this shot.”

The senior hit both free throws to put the Vikings ahead by four. Eight seconds later, Woodbridge junior Reghan Robinson hit a huge three-pointer to cut the lead to one, but Cape escaped with a 31-30 victory over the Henlopen South champs.

“It was going to be the game-winner,” said Lee. “I had to lock in and make it, block everything else out. We won. That’s all that matters.”

The Vikings won their fourth title in the last five years. Three of those victories were over the Blue Raiders.

“Keeping our focus comes from just being able to rely on each other and trust each other on the team,” said freshman Amalia Fruchtman. “When we were up by one, I was thinking just don’t turn it over. Our team played phenomenally through the noise, the physicality and through foul trouble, and we got things done.”

“You’ve just got to zone in and block everything out and focus,” said sophomore Hayden Hudson. “I was a little nervous, but I knew Ja’Onna had the shots at the end. When we are in tough situations, Ja’Onna leads and guides us through it.”

Fruchtman led the Vikings with 13 points, 15 rebounds and three blocked shots. Junior guard Mya Maull scored 10. Hudson garnered four points, 10 rebounds and two blocks. Lee made four steals and snagged six rebounds.

Hudson eclipsed Mehkia Applewhite’s record for rebounds in a season (177) with 180. Cape’s 19 consecutive wins is the longest winning streak in coach Pat Woods’ tenure.

The No. 3 seed Vikings have a bye in the first round of the state tournament and will host the winner of the Dover vs. Saint Mark’s game Friday, March 3, at a location to be announced.


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