Tripple Overtime: Kyrie and Shaq think the earth is flat, and so can you (science is a liar sometimes)
I’m not going to stand here and present some egghead scientific argument based on fact. I’m just a regular dude. I like to watch football, quote Chevy Chase movies and crank the radio when Motley Crüe comes on. Rock, flag and eagle, if you know what I mean.
Seniors ready to leave legacy, elevate IR lax to next level
Goalkeeper Hayden McWilliams was one of two freshmen starting on a senior-dominated Indian River High School lacrosse squad when he emerged as the team’s emotionally-charged leader.
As the only other freshman on that team, and standing next to him in the halftime huddle, George Martin remembers the moment well.
“I’ll never forget it,” said Martin. “We’re two freshmen surrounded by that senior group that had been playing together for a long time, and it was a close game. Hayden steps right into the middle of the dogpile and says, ‘Alright, guys — this is what we gotta do. We gotta take the ball, and we gotta put it in the back of their net.’ It’s something about the way he delivers his speeches that gets everyone fired up. He’s really got a way with words.”
It’s a particularly special season for head coach Erika Murphy and the Indian River High School softball team.
After she took over as head coach for the Indians in 2014, along with assistant coaches Abi Givens and Catherine Bennett, this year’s senior class will be the first that the coaching trio has seen all the way through from their days as freshmen.
After back-to-back 9-9 seasons, 2014 was also the last time that the Indians made it to the playoffs — a feat that now-seasoned seniors including Mackenzie Collins, Madi McGee and Sami Mumford aim to accomplish once again before closing out the final chapters of their careers.
“The seniors this year are good role models, on the field and off the field. They’re players that the girls looked up to. That’s what we’re looking for in role models — to help develop that team chemistry,” said Murphy. “There’s just a good feeling this year. The girls really want it, and they’ve been working hard from Day 1.”
For Lydic, countdown to Augusta is on
It has been decreed.
Next Sunday, April 2, will officially be recognized as “Sarah Lydic Day,” as proclaimed by Mayor Walter Curran and the Town of Ocean View, in honor of the 11-year old Lord Baltimore Elementary School student as she sets off to represent her community at the national finals of this year’s Drive, Chip & Putt Challenge at the home of the Masters in Augusta, Ga.
But while making it to Augusta to compete against the nation’s top young talent may warrant the honor on its own, Lydic and her older sister, Hannah Lydic, have made their impact on the local community and members of their home course at Bear Trap Dunes, far beyond the 18th hole, since stepping onto the local golf scene.
“Most of the members of the club are of an age where they have grandkids. These are two additional grandkids,” said Curran, a Bear Trap member himself. “They’re part of the family. They’re polite, they’re well behaved, they’re not only good at what they do, but they’re just great kids. Their parents have done a wonderful job raising them.”
Coming off a down season in 2016, and with the Henlopen South division wide open in 2017, the Indian River High School boys’ tennis team is ready for redemption and to return the title to Dagsboro behind a squad of seasoned veterans.
Not only does the team bring back four seniors to the starting rotation but also head coach Mariano Woo for his second year at the helm.
After getting a late start last spring due to some unfavorable weather and bureaucratic red tape, things have been smooth sailing so far this spring as the Indians get ready for their first match of the season.
“We’re leaps and bounds ahead from starting last season,” said Woo. “Last year, I didn’t actually become the official coach until about a week prior to the first match, so it was much easier this year — plus, they’re all sophomores and above this year, so they’re more experienced.”
They may have graduated six seniors from a Henlopen South championship squad last season, but after seeing their biggest turnout in years, the Indian River High School girls’ tennis team is ready to defend the title behind an array of new talent and new stars ready to step up.
“There’s a lot of underclassmen. We only have two seniors, but we have a lot of exhibition players from last year that are moving into varsity spots,” said fourth-year head coach Stefanie Riddle. “Just in the preliminary lineup, we’ve got half of our exhibition players moving up to varsity, but they’ve all really improved. I really think that they’re going to be able to help us.”
While the team said goodbye to their top two players from 2016 — first-singles player Hannah Shultie and second-singles player Kayla Huebner — they do return sophomore Alexa Fitz to lead the charge.
IR softball raising money for pediatric cancer
The Indian River High School softball team is offering fans and community activists an interactive way to make a difference, raising money for the “Lace Up 4 Pediatric Cancer” campaign during the 2017 season.
After recording her first NCAA career hit earlier this month, Indian River High School graduate and current University of Hartford freshman Eliza Bomhardt tallied her first career home run in the second inning of a game against Saint Peter’s on Monday, March 20.
Then, in the seventh inning of the same game, she tallied her second.
After the team fell behind 1-0 early, Bomhardt’s second-inning shot scored two runs, to put the Hawks up 2-1.
The Peacocks would go on to rack up seven runs in the fourth inning and take control of the game with an 8-5 lead.
That’s when “The Lizard” took the plate — this time to knock a three-run homer and give her squad a 10-8 lead, sparking a 10-run rally as the Hawks went on to pull out an eventual 15-9 victory in comeback fashion.
It’s a phrase I never imagined I’d be able to use with a straight face: “Man — I could really use the help of R. Chris Clark right about now.”
Gerken, Conover, Mercer inducted as first IR soccer HOF class
There are two stars adorning the sleeves of Indian River High School soccer jackets. The stars stand as symbols — the program’s way of honoring its rich history and two state championship teams: the first in 2013, the other in 2015.
Recently, however, the Soccer Boosters at Indian River came up with a new way of honoring past stars — the ones who aren’t specifically mentioned on the prideful coats of current IR soccer lettermen and coaches yet still shine brightly from their days in green and gold and as one of the main reasons for the program’s development and continued success.
Last Thursday, March 9, three of those stars — Howard Gerken, Christopher Conover and Josh Mercer — got a chance to shine once again when they were officially honored as the first class of the Indian River High School Soccer Hall of Fame.
Indians set sights on South title
On his first day of practice after taking over the Indian River High School baseball team, first-year head coach D.J. Long told his squad of his playing days at long-time district rival Sussex Central.
Understandably, he was booed.
But while the gesture was made in jest, it also served as the ice-breaking introduction for the former-Golden Knight-turned-Indian, as he swaps out the blue in his blue-and-gold for green, boos for cheers, and aims to get the Indians back to the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
“It is different. I did have to update my wardrobe — it was all blue and gold,” said Long with a laugh. “Now, the Central game is definitely going to be a game I look forward to. I’m excited for that.”
Bear Trap Dunes to host Drive, Chip & Put viewing party
Ocean View’s very own Sarah Lydic will soon be headed to Augusta for the national finals of the Drive, Chip & Putt challenge; and her home club at Bear Trap Dunes is ready to watch her tee off on the national stage.
Bear Trap will host a viewing party and brunch at their restaurant, The Den at Bear Trap Dunes, where fans can watch the event unfold live on the Golf Channel and celebrate the occasion when it gets under way next month.
Lydic earned her way to the home of the Masters after placing first overall in the Girls’ 10-11 division at a regional qualifying event held at Oakmont Country Club in Oakmont, Pa.
Last year, there was a new team. This year, there’s a new attitude.
Relying heavily on seasoned vets, such as Blue-Gold All-Star selection Emiley Shuey, in 2016, first-year head coach Kelsea Ayers and an inexperienced Indian River High School girls’ lacrosse squad still managed to win five games during their varsity season.
But despite graduating their leading scorer, the new-look Indians are aiming to double their win total and make a run at the playoffs this spring, with a full year of experience and new commitment to getting the program off the ground.
“Last year, as a beginning team, it was definitely more of relying on just a couple of players. This year, we’ve all improved as a team, so I don’t think this year will be just one person stepping up — I think it will be more of a whole team coming together,” explained senior Lexi Haden. “Instead of one person taking [Shuey’s] place, it’s going to be all 12 of us on the field being one.”
Bomhardt back on the diamond, tallies first career NCAA hit, run
Tripple Overtime: How Emilio Estevez may or may not have inspired female hockey players from the Middle East and/or everywhere
Emilio Estevez. You either love him, hate him, are completely indifferent to him, are somewhat indifferent to him, have another unspecified opinion of varying nature about him, or have no idea who he is. He’s just one of those classic ’80s movies stars where there is no in-between.