Monday, May 23, 2022

Cape Henry boys lacrosse dominates conference battle against Bishop Sullivan

Cape Henry midfielder Hunter Harrington (9) celebrates his goal in the third quarter with Tyler Dillon (19). (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)
Cape Henry midfielder Hunter Harrington (9) celebrates his goal in the third quarter with Tyler Dillon (19). (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)

The Cape Henry boys lacrosse team used an explosive first quarter start and a commanding finish in the final frame to topple Tidewater Conference rival Bishop Sullivan 11-5 on Thursday.

The Dolphins unleashed a barrage of five goals from five players in the game’s first six minutes and finished the first quarter up 6-2. That cushion proved to be pivotal in a game that tightened in the final 36 minutes.

“It’s pretty important to jump out on teams and get in transition quickly,” Dolphins assistant coach Colin Kelly said after the game. “These guys were ready to run loose from the beginning.”

Cape Henry’s (12-5) versatile offense kept Bishop Sullivan’s back line on its heels and guessing early. Dolphins midfielder Hunter Harrington used his speed in an isolation call to score the opening goal in the first minute of play. Joe Tobin and Andrew Jaycox, working off Cape Henry’s ball movement, penetrated cracks in the Crusaders’ defense. Ben Baumann notched two goals in the first quarter, both of them coming off beautifully threaded passes, one from Andrew Branson and the other from Nathan Branson.

Cape Henry midfielder Tyler Dillon escapes with one of his 13 face-off wins in Thursday's win. (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)
Cape Henry midfielder Tyler Dillon escapes with one of his 13 face-off wins in Thursday’s win. (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)

“These guys just like playing team offense together,” Kelly said. “We’re starting to get the ball moving and snapping around the field, which has allowed different scorers to execute well.”

While the Dolphins offense generated just five goals over the last three quarters compared with six in the first 12 minutes, their defense kept the Crusaders from exploiting lanes or getting high percentage looks at the net.

Cape Henry freshman goalkpeeper Parker Tanner-Vigil was aggressive and worked his ball-hawking instincts around the net for a game-high 10 saves. Tanner-Vigil stopped crucial shots in the second and third quarters, preserving the Dolphins’ four-goal lead when their offense endured brief droughts.

“Parker is a rising star,” Kelly said. “He’s got potential that might be unmatched by any goalie we’ve seen at Cape Henry.”

Defender Tyler Morris was instrumental in front of Tanner-Vigil,  calling out defensive rotations and being the leading voice of communication on every Crusaders pass.

“Tyler Morris’ leading voice is key to us winning games and anchoring the back,” Kelly said.

Cape Henry defender Tyler Morriss transitions into a fast break after creating a turnover in the fourth quarter of Thursday's win. (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)
Cape Henry defender Tyler Morris transitions into a fast break after creating a turnover in the fourth quarter of Thursday’s win. (Joe Saade/Southside Daily)

Cape Henry controlled play for most of the night. Midfielder Tyler Dillon was key in face-offs, leading the Dolphins to a 13-4 edge that resulted in a domination of ball possession.

The Dolphins took a 10-5 lead into the fourth quarter and didn’t let the Crusaders sniff a comeback. Cape Henry ate the clock by controlling the ball and firing 11 shots at net in the final 12 minutes.

Baumann and Harrington scored hat tricks for the Dolphins, while Tobin finished with two goals. For Bishop Sullivan, attack Casey Turner scored a team-high two goals, and Jake Holava, Gage Perry and Dante Burke each notched one goal.

Crusaders keeper Ryan Jost stopped eight shots. Cape Henry out-shot Bishop Sullivan 31-22.

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