Going low doesn’t guarantee a golf win

April 13, 2024

The Cape Henlopen High School golf team learned that no matter how well you play, on any given day some other folks can play just a little bit better.

The Vikings hosted the Caesar Rodney Riders April 9 at Rehoboth Beach Country Club. Cape’s 162 total was the lowest score posted by a Vikings team since a 161 made at Heritage Shores in April 2015. It also matched a 162 Cape golfers made in March 2012, also at Heritage Shores.

Nonetheless, the perennially powerful CR squad scored even better with a 153, led by co-medalists Reagan Garnsey and Evan Gebhart, who played the front nine in even par.

Jacob Gabbard and Travers Johnson led the Vikings with a pair of 39s, personal bests for both.

“Everything was working,” Gabbard said. His only mishap was a double bogey on the par 4 eighth hole when he stubbed a chip.

Johnson said, “I started out on the first hole with a bogey and followed up with five pars and then a birdie on the seventh hole, and finished not so hot with a bogey, double bogey. So, a solid round for me.” 

He credited a 30-foot putt for his birdie on the seventh hole and said tree trouble on the ninth led to his only double bogey of the afternoon. 

When I asked Johnson what he considered the key to his fine day, he had a ready response: “I definitely wasn’t going for a lot of the shots I typically go for. I was playing it safer, aiming for the center of the greens rather than going for the pin, and just staying clear of the water.”

Just like their coaches have been telling them. Imagine that.

Despite the loss against CR, the Vikings were justifiably pleased with their low-scoring performance. 

However, the team couldn’t quite keep it going the next day, when Cape lost a home match against Polytech, 158-175. Junior Kylie Yiengst of Polytech won medalist honors with her one-over par 37. 

Johnson and Tyler Healy scored best for the Vikings with a pair of 42s. Kingston Davis was third best for Cape with his 45. Cape senior Luke McCarthy, in his first varsity match, tied with Gabbard at 46 for the fourth scoring spot.

Vikings coach Robert Harrod said, “Yesterday seems like one of our best scores as a team in a long time, and seemed like we were trending in the right way. Today we just hit a few speed bumps and went back in the other direction.”

He also credited Polytech for its performance. “They are a tough team, and there was no room for mistakes on our part. We seemed to have made quite a few coming in on the end.”

Cape next travels to Heritage Shores for an away match against Woodbridge Tuesday, April 16.

High school golf roundup

Delmarva Christian traveled to Frog Hollow Golf Club near Middletown April 9 and defeated MOT Charter High School on the club’s front nine, 148-190. The Royals’ Joel Perry earned medalist honors with a 35. Avery Brown followed him with a 37. Daniel Genga and Lance McQuay tied for third and fourth best with a pair of 38s.

Sussex Academy made a successful road trip to Heritage Shores Golf Club April 9 against Sussex Tech, winning 164-192. Austin Dostal and Dominic Piperno tied for medalist honors with a pair of 37s on the club’s front nine. Quentin Bowman came next for the Seahawks with his 44, followed by Keenan Williams’ 46.

Cape golf fundraiser April 22

Nicola Pizza on Route 1 near Five Points will hold a dine and donate Monday, April 22, to benefit the Cape Henlopen High School golf team. Twenty percent of dine-in sales from 5 to 9 p.m. will go to support the Vikings. 

During that dining period, there will also be a chance auction of golf-related items, including golf rounds at Cape Region courses, to boost the total raised.

I see a Nic-O-Boli in my future.

Clothing Our Kids outing

The 10th annual Clothing Our Kids Golf Outing is set for Monday, Oct. 14, at The Peninsula Golf & Country Club near Millsboro.

The hugely popular event sells out of its playing spots faster than many other Cape Region charity golf events.

COK began as a local initiative to help Sussex County elementary school children who needed more clothing and shoes than their other resources could provide. Continued success helped inspire the decision to expand the community that COK would help. The program now assists needy students in the county’s middle schools as well as the region’s Head Start programs. 

Business and individual sponsors are being sought for the event.

For more information, call COK at 302-864-KIDS (5437), email, or go to


  • Fritz Schranck has been writing about the Cape Region's golf community since 1999. Snippets, stories and anecdotes from his columns are included in his new book, "Hole By Hole: Golf Stories from Delaware's Cape Region and Beyond," which is available at the Cape Gazette offices, Browseabout Books in Rehoboth Beach, Biblion Books in Lewes, and local golf courses. His columns and book reviews are available at

    Contact Fritz by emailing

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