Cape Gazette
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People In Sports

Big Yellow Taxi is torture on a five-hour trip

By Dave Frederick | Oct 15, 2013
Photo by: Dave Frederick Cape and Sussex Tech volleyball players gather to give thanks.

Big Yellow Taxi - I used to joke you can travel first class or you can travel coach. I used that joke when I was a coach, but the first rule of comedy is, "Don’t make fun of something you're not.” I don’t coach any more, so I don’t do coach jokes except when they can’t hear me. A month after the Delaware Sports Commission announced it was bringing Slam Dunk to the Beach back to Cape Henlopen, the Vikings' two-time state champion field hockey team traveled five hours to Pennsylvania's Bloomsburg High School to play a game on wet grass and patches of dirt. And our precious cargo traveled in a yellow school bus sitting straight up and down shoulder to shoulder. If you know kids and have ridden on yellow school buses with them on field trips and to sporting venues, you know they don’t travel at seated attention. They will curl and bend, nestle and burrow like SPCA cats. Bobby Jacobs never had a tournament team picked up in Philly or Baltimore airports by a yellow school bus. You won’t see a college team ever get off a yellow bus. Rent a coach that comes with a driver or buy one for the school - now that would be cool.

I got your detour, pal! -  Late Sunday night I took granddaughter Anna back to Temple and Sara Young back to Penn. My plan was to hit UP via Rt. 76 West, drop off Sara, then trek east on Market then north on Broad Street to Temple. The problem began when 76 West was suddenly without a warning barrier shut down, and I was diverted into Philadelphia International Airport, literally. I ended up about a Dover ground game - 400 yards - from a major runway. And we spotted deer all slimed by jet fuel. I swear one looked at me and said, “Yo, pal!” After an hour's traffic game of ghetto Chutes and Ladders I was heading back home when another barrier blocked my path to 95 South and I saw a sign: “Get up on outta here, Skippy!”

I Spy - If Tom Brady has time for one play to beat you, better put 10 on pass defense including placing your three tallest guys in the end zone to guard fades and the deadly skinny post route. That or rush 11, sell out like an undercover hippie. But rock a traditional D and you will get beat every time. Brady versus Saints' D coordinator Rob Ryan is a mismatch on every level, and Boston is happy. Add the Sox behind Big Papi's grand slam snagging a must-win game versus Tigers. Boston Strong!

Knock-back game - My friend coach George Glenn always said, “If an offensive team lines up and starts beating you in the knock-back game and you can’t stop them, it's going to be a long four quarters." Cape has suffered four lopsided losses by getting knocked back in the first half, and maybe it's alignment or maybe they are just getting beat. I do know a good defense starts with a bad attitude. And those are the guys who need to be on the field.

Snippets - Most Division I sports that are not football and basketball operate on 12 scholarships that are broken up into partials. And coaches are finding kids early and exchanging verbal commitments. It’s a bit of an insider network, and many high school coaches are not part of it.

Big soccer game at Cape’s Legends Stadium at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 15, as the 10-1 Vikings host the 9-1-1 Dover Senators. Cape will host St. Thomas More  at 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 17.

The field hockey team is having Senior Night at 7 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 17, as the Vikings host Caesar Rodney. The game is also a fundraiser for the American Heart Association, and everyone is encouraged to wear red.

Last Thursday's volleyball game between Cape and Sussex Tech ended with a spontaneous prayer circle. I caught a photo of that moment of reflection and prayer and put it up on Facebook. People loved it, just the image of rivals holding hands and giving thanks warmed the hearts of hundreds. I sent the photo to my friend Carlos Villa, the soccer coach at Sussex Tech, whose daughter Alayna plays for the Ravens. Carlos wrote to me, “I was disappointed we lost, then I saw my daughter leading the prayer and I realized that the Lord has created a strong and wonderful person that doesn't need my insignificant input. I am thankful for another lesson in life.” Go on now, git!

Alayna Villa understands what it means to serve. She led a spontaneous student prayer circle after the match between Sussex Tech and Cape. (Photo by: Dave Frederick )
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