Cape hockey held off a valiant game-long effort by Polytech Nov. 14, beating the Panthers 1-0 in the semifinal round of the DIAA Division I state tournament on a goal by sophomore Sam Connors with 11:12 remaining in the first half.
Connors is the inserter on Cape corners, and she inserted the Vikings into the state championship game against Padua at 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 16, at Sussex Academy. The Pandas beat Dover 1-0 in overtime to advance to their second straight straight championship game against Cape.
Connors camped on the near post, got all blade on the ball, and shot it to the far post for the only goal of the game
Down at the other end, Cape goalie Julie Heffernan fought off a flurry of shots on a corner – swatting, kicking and refocusing.
“I just said to myself, ‘No way. They can’t score,’” Heffernan said with a smile after the game.
The official scorers had Cape with an 11-1 advantage in corners, but just four shots on goal to none for the Panthers.
Polytech goalie Reagan Thomas had two saves. The Panthers returned 18 of 21 varsity players for first-year head coach Torre Huk.
“We played our best game of the year on the Sussex Academy field against Delmar,” said Cape coach Kate Austin. “Today, we didn’t play as well, but [they] played hard, and Saturday we get Padua, and we will have to be at our best to beat them.”
Cape beat Padua 1-0 at Champions Stadium Sept. 21 on a goal by Cami Smith with 42 seconds left to play. The Vikings outshot the Pandas in that game 11-0 with an 11-2 advantage in penalty corners.
Last year, the Vikings beat Padua 5-0 in the championship game.