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Remembering Mike Drass: Hundreds mourn Wesley College football coach

Delaware State News WP -

Current and former football players joined hundreds of others that attended the memorial service for head coach Mike Drass Saturday. Special to the Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

DOVER — Mike Drass made his living as a football coach but, cliche as it may seem, he was clearly much more.

More than a dozen colleagues, family members and friends praised the late Mr. Drass Saturday in a memorial service held at Wesley College, where he worked for 29 years, the last 25 as head coach.

He was, speakers said, a family man, a brilliant football mind who truly loved his players, an energetic personality and the “epicenter of the Wesley family.”

Lori Drass, widow of Nike Drass, is comforted by a friend who attended the memorial service Saturday.

 

Mike Drass, shown coaching the Wesley College football team during a game last November, took the Wolverines from a small-college afterthought to a program that reached the NCAA Division III semifinals six times between 2006-14. (Wesley College photo)

“We stand in the shadow of an exponential impact of a coach who was a champion in sport and a champion for people,” former Wesley chaplain Randy Chambers said.

Mr. Drass died Monday at the age of 57. The cause of death has not been disclosed. He is survived by his wife, Laurie Ann, and daughter, Molly Ann, as well as five siblings and his father.

Hundreds of people came to Scott D. Miller Stadium, where the field bears his name, despite the threat of rain, and although the skies did open up during the two-hour service, the stands remained crowded until the very end.

It was a testament to the impact Mr. Drass had on so many.

“He made everyone feel like they were best friends. He made everyone feel special,” said Wesley offensive coordinator Chip Knapp, who has been at the college since 1991.

Mr. Drass started at Wesley in 1989, six years after graduating from Mansfield University of Pennsylvania, where he was a two-time all-conference selection as an offensive lineman. He had previously worked at North Penn High School in Blossburg, Pennsylvania, and Mansfield.

He spent four years as Wesley’s assistant head coach and defensive coordinator before being named to the top job.

Wesley College president Robert Clark adds his personal tribute to the memory of head football coach Mike Drass, who passed away suddenly this week.

Just the third head coach in the small school’s history, he turned Wesley into a Division III powerhouse, leading the Wolverines to the playoffs in every one of the past 13 seasons, including six appearances in the semifinals of the playoffs. His record at Wesley was 229-61-1, making him one of 89 college football coaches with at least 200 career wins.

His players received 125 All-American honors and two won the Gagliardi Trophy, given to the best Division III player every year.
But, according to many, describing what he did on the gridiron leaves out a substantial part of his legacy.

Colleague after colleague, most of whom coached under or played for Mr. Drass, said Saturday he loved them and was not afraid to show it.

“I walked through hell because Coach Drass told me I could,” former Wesley player and coach Steve Scanlon said, relaying a story of how Mr. Drass helped him beat cancer.

“The lessons you gave me for free most people would pay for,” Tim Kane, who played and coached at Wesley, said.

Some speakers struggled to find the words to describe how much Mr. Drass meant to them, and it was clear many lives had been touched by the man described as a wonderful son, brother, husband, father and friend.

“His passing leaves us feeling like a piece of ourselves is missing,” sister-in-law Jennifer Drass said.

Hundreds attended Saturday’s memorial service honoring head coach Mike Drass despite heavy rain.

Mr. Drass almost never started at Wesley, according to Mr. Knapp, who told the audience how the man who would go on to become one of the most successful Division III football coaches ever nearly missed his interview at the school.

In the end, of course, things worked out both for Mr. Drass and for Wesley — and for the many players and coaches he mentored over the years.

Former player Bill Strickland share’s his thoughts and the dedication head coach Mike Drass had for his players during the memorial service Saturday.

“I think the best yardstick for coach Drass is to look at the number of people he had a positive impact on,” former standout safety Rocky Myers said.

Wesley College has been in mourning since Monday, and the scoreboard in Miller Stadium for several days has read “Love you Coach” where the team names would be, with “2018” in place of the score,

On Saturday many people wore shirts with Mr. Drass’ name and collegiate number, 73.

He is a member of the Rose Tree Media School District and Mansfield hall of fames, and former Wesley player and coach Jason Bowen said he belongs in the College Football Hall of Fame.

Nobody in attendance Saturday would argue that.

“He always knew this was what he was supposed to be doing,” Mr. Bowen said.

Instead of flowers, his family has asked well-wishers to donate to Wesley’s football program. Mr. Drass, several people said, will be looking down on his family and his beloved college from above.

“Heaven is hung in Wolverine blue and white right now,” Wesley President Robert Clark said.

Townsend: Democrats not supporting clean water bill strongly enough

Delaware State News WP -

DOVER — Several lawmakers aired frustrations Thursday over what they see as a lack of investment in clean water by state officials. During a budget hearing involving top environmental officials, a few members of the Joint Committee on Capital Improvement questioned the executive branch’s lack of support for a bill that would create a new fee to clean up the state’s waterways.

Noting water quality is poor in many parts of the state, as evidenced by the recent episodes of tainted water in Sussex County, Sen. Bryan Townsend, D-Newark, asked Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Shawn Garvin when the state would make serious investments in combating flooding and polluted water.

“My understanding has been that this is a very serious problem,” Sen. Townsend said. “Short-term, long-term, this is a big problem.”

House Bill 270 would establish new surcharges of $40 on individual tax returns and $45 on businesses licenses, using the money to fill a new fund that would spend millions annually to treat Delaware’s dirty water and flooding problems.

But despite characterizations from supporters that “bold change” is desperately needed to make waterways healthy again, the measure was tabled in committee in March, and with just 13 regularly scheduled legislative days left, its chances of passage are nil.

Mr. Garvin told the committee Thursday he supports the intent but discussions on a water fee have “to be done in that larger context” of budget reform, something the administration of Gov. John Carney has been seriously focused on.

Sen. Townsend, who has been the driving force behind the push for raising money for water projects, expounded on his thoughts Friday, saying he is disappointed more has not been done.

“I hope we can all take a different approach in 2019, not to only look at it just as the numbers but to have really powerful conversations about values and priorities,” he said.

Sen. Townsend chose his words carefully, tempering any criticism of the executive branch by noting he understands Gov. Carney’s focus on changing the state’s budgeting process and believes the governor is willing to consider big changes, but he still issued criticisms of some of his fellow Democrats.

Many Democratic officials have shied away from the issue of clean water, he said, arguing they could garner strong public support for a fee by emphasizing how sorely it is needed.

According to a 2015 Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control report, 377 bodies of water — more than 90 percent of the state’s waterways — fall short of water quality standards because of pollution. That pollution stems from a variety of sources, such as fertilizer washed into waterways, toxins pumped into waterways by large corporations, salt used to prepare the roads ahead of snowstorms and animal droppings left on the ground.

According to state officials, more than half a billion dollars is needed for water investments over the next five years.

In trumpeting Gov. Carney’s budget proposal of $6 million evenly split between two funds dedicated to water issues, as well as $4.2 million for shoreline and waterway management, Mr. Garvin noted the state “should not have third world situations with people struggling with clean water.”

Sen. Townsend said Friday he appreciates that investment but more is needed.

In response to a question in the committee hearing from Sen. Townsend — who asked for an answer “as apocalyptic as possible” — about a failure to establish more funding, Water Infrastructure Advisory Council chair Jeffrey Bross agreed the current level is not sufficient. Committee co-chair Rep. Quinn Johnson, D-Middletown, chimed in to note water issues will probably remain out of the spotlight until Delaware’s water is brown, prompting Mr. Bross to concur.

“Until the problem manifests itself, it’s out of sight and out of mind,” he said.

Everyone agrees clean water is important. The question is whether the bill seriously addresses the problem and whether the state needs to create a new fee on taxpayers.

Some people have objected on the grounds the measure would let large companies responsible for some of the pollution off the hook, while lawmakers of both parties have argued it would unnecessarily create new layers of bureaucracy.

But supporters believe the state cannot afford to wait.

Describing Delaware as at a “crossroads,” Sen. Townsend said Friday legislators must “do a better job of focusing on the public sector services that help create a stable environment for the private sector success.”

“I can’t think of much more important than clean water or clean drinking water,” Rep. Mike Mulrooney, D-Wilmington Manor, said in committee Thursday.

Asked if the governor would consider a variant of House Bill 270 next year, a spokesman for Gov. Carney said in a text message the administration is focused on the current year’s budget.

Sen. Townsend, who said he has not talked about the idea with the governor much this year, didn’t mince words when speaking about the proposal’s future.

“I think 2019 is the key year. If we can’t get this done in 2019, then I don’t think we can honestly say that we’re committed to clean water,” he said.

Woodcrest residents vexed by nearby wetland site

Delaware State News WP -

Woodcrest neighborhood residents Kari and Chris Tollinger, Linda Goodnight at John Parker joined Dover City Councilmen David Anderson, Roy Sudler Jr. and Brian Lewis to express concerns publicly about a wetland mitigation site located at the entrance to the former Dover High School campus on Walker Road. Delaware State News/Craig Anderson

DOVER — Does the City of Dover own it?

Or the Capital School District, perhaps?

As summer nears and temperatures rise, a wetland mitigation site located near the old Dover High School campus on Walker Road has some nearby Woodcrest neighborhood residents agitated, confused and holding their noses at times.

The locals have circulated a petition to fill in the waterhole and disperse the annoying mosquitoes living there, but it’s unclear who has authority to do the deed, if approved.

Nearby resident Kari Tollinger said problems began in 2014, when the high school closed and the vacant area became neglected. Besides the mosquitoes, she said chemicals sprayed to kill vegetation have dropped air quality, and unwanted critters have thrived.

“It’s devalued our property and become a danger to those who live around it,” Mrs. Tollinger said. “When you enter the neighborhood that’s the first thing you notice. There’s been a sinkhole problem, a daycare is nearby and groundhogs come into our yards constantly.

“We need to get rid of the thing but feel kind unsure of how that has to happen right now.”

Lori Goodnight is put off by “the smell” that comes from the area and laments that “nobody seems to know who owns the property, but somebody has to.”

A wetland mitigation site is located near the entrance to the Woodcrest neighborhood and former Dover High School campus on Walker Road. Delaware State News/Craig Anderson

This week, City Councilman Roy E. Sudler Jr. said his research of tax parcel and zoning records indicate that the Capital School District owns the land.

School Board President Sean P. M. Christiansen, however, said that’s unclear the district has requested that the city provide all records associated with the property.

“We’re doing our due diligence and looking into this to find out who the rightful owner of it is and who’s responsible for maintaining it,” Mr. Christiansen said.

“We’ve been maintaining it for the past 14 years (through spraying and cutting down grass and weeds) because we are good neighbors.”

The school district points to a letter from a City of Dover assistant engineer in August 2014 indicating the municipality “has begun construction on work approved by the permit noted above and is requesting a time extension for the project.” The letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers indicated the property involved was “the Dover High wetlands mitigation site.”

The project was managed to meet DNREC Division of Soil and Water Conservation Department recommendations and requirements and needed a erosion and sediment control plan approved, the engineer said.

Two weeks ago, Mr. Sudler presented the concerns to City Councilman Brian E. Lewis, chair of the Safety Advisory and Transportation Subcommittee of the Council Committee of the Whole. Mr. Lewis responded that “in my opinion this is an atrocity and citizens should not have to experience the health and safety concerns that they are now.”

Councilman David Anderson was also at the public grievance session and pledged to look into the matter as well.

“I think the school district wants to be a good neighbor but there was confusion about ownership, which we’re resolving,” Mr. Anderson said.
“There’s been some confusion that quite frankly, we as a city contributed to during previous communications.”

The area in question sits in Mr. Sudler’s Fourth District, and he said constituents contacted him for help in January. Two public meetings have been held since, including one attended by Capital School District Superintendent Dr. Dan Shelton.

“The main issue is that my constituents at Woodcrest have been neglected, their issues and concerns have been abandoned, since the school closed,” Mr. Sudler said, noting fallen trees and “foul-smelling” chlorophyll algae in the area.

“Debris piled up and the pond upkeep was neglected.”

Mr. Sudler believes that any assertion that the school district is “trying to be a beneficial neighbor” is in actuality “so far from the truth.”

Mr. Christiansen said the school district is open to meeting with anyone who wants to discuss the issue. Any decision to fill in the area must come from other entities such as DNREC and the Army Corps of Engineers, and he said the district would work with them if the situation arises.

The school district may construct a middle school on the property as well, and moving the management area is a favorable, Mr. Christiansen said.

“We’re always willing to listen to anyone wanting to voice their concerns and open to discussing possible solutions for something that affects the community that we are a part of,” he said.

Dover man discovers hidden woodworking talent

Delaware State News WP -

Richard Harpster of Dover displays his handcrafted wooden American flag that has become the most popular item from his new business Harpster Designs. Mr. Harpster, 49, realized he had an aptitude for woodworking just last Christmas. (Delaware State News photo by Marc Clery)

DOVER — Making a career out of creating custom wood furniture and designs was just about the last thing on earth that Richard Harpster thought he would ever do.

Yet somehow, at the age of 49, he unexpectedly discovered his hidden talent last year while working on some Christmas presents that he had designed for his mother, sister and brother.

Not only did the custom wooden American flag wall hangings that Mr. Harpster made for his family members turn out to be a hit, it also turned into one big unexpected present for himself as he discovered an uncanny knack for creating, staining and finishing wood designs.

Nowadays, he can’t get enough of it while working out of his garage in Fox Hall West in Dover.

“Oddly enough, over the holidays I wanted to come up with a gift idea for my mom and my brother and sister and I decided to make a (wooden) American flag for each of them,” Mr. Harpster said. “As I normally do, I usually post what I’m doing online on Facebook like a little blog … here’s a pile of wood and here’s what it’s going to turn into.

“So, I did that with the flags and people really responded well to it. It took off and people started making requests. It just propelled from there. I’m so busy now I can hardly see straight.”

Suddenly, he was the owner of Harpster Designs, his very own burgeoning custom-made furniture and design company.

“I’m working harder than I ever have in my life, but I’ve never had so much fun,” said Mr. Harpster. “It’s nothing for me to be up until 2 o’clock in the morning working on something and I have to be careful not to make any noise because I’m in a residential area. I’m usually doing the quieter things at that hour.

Richard Harpster is the owner of Harpster Designs, his very own burgeoning custom-made furniture and design company. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

“Who knew? I had no idea at all. In fact, everybody that knows me knows I have no business around power tools. Oddly enough, I didn’t know what a miter saw was a year ago and now I own one. I have a nice full-sized table saw now along with a joiner and all of the woodworking equipment you need.”

His custom-made American flag wall hangings have suddenly turned into his most popular creations.

It all started with a hope and a dream — and a farm table — last May.

“It just happened one day,” Mr. Harpster said. “I used to be a teacher at Central Middle School with the Jobs for Delaware Graduates program and just decided I had enough. Teaching just wasn’t the thing for me and seventh and eighth grade are tough grades to teach.

“I thought, ‘What am I going to do? I’ve got to do something and I’m too young to retire.’

“Then something popped in my head — make a farmhouse table and matching bench. I may have seen it online, so I did a little looking and found some designs and said, ‘Well, you know what? I can do that.’

“So, I got the cut list, went out to Lowe’s and bought the lumber and had them cut the lumber. I didn’t even own a saw at that time.”

A couple of weeks later, Mr. Harpster’s neighborhood hosted a community yard sale and he got a chance to see how his new work measured up.

“There was an Amish gentleman who came by to pick up an old toddler bed that we had sold in the yard sale and he saw the table because it was still sitting in my garage that I had just made,” he said. “I asked him to give it a look over and I asked him where I could improve on it and he looked it over and said, ‘That’s darn good work.’

“So that kind of encouraged me and I started getting into different things, making headboards of different sizes — king, queen, full — and matching nightstands, different styles of coffee tables that I made for myself, and it started taking off.

“The next thing you know I was doing this for a living. People like it.”

Melissa Harpster, Richard’s wife of 11 years, laughed and said their first fight came when she couldn’t get him to fix a broken toilet in their house and he kept complaining that he didn’t know how.

“My father was a custom woodworker all of his life, so I’ve been exposed to it,” she said. “Rich never touched a tool ever. I would always fix everything in the house and then, all of a sudden, he started on a couple of things, and was like, ‘I’m going to do this,’ and I’m like, ‘Yeah, right.’

“But he’s more focused on this business than I’ve ever seen. I’ve always said he’s an ideas man. He always has ideas and I’ve always thought to myself, ‘OK, we’ll see how long this lasts.’ It turns out that he has never been so sure about something in his life and the conviction that he has to make this business work and his excitement — that is what has been so motivating to me.”

On Saturday, Mr. Harpster unveiled a POW/MIA chair at Mission BBQ in Dover that he crafted that will sit empty in honor of prisoners of war and those soldiers left missing in action. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

Mr. Harpster credits the owner of Paul’s Antiques in north Dover for taking the time to teach him all about the custom wood business.

“I spent probably no less than 100 hours with him donating his time to me teaching me how to properly topcoat using different topcoats, whether it be shellac, a lacquer, polyurethane, linseed oil, all of the many different options available. So I’ve learned from the best,” he said.

“He taught me how to finish things properly and really, at the end of the day, after you’ve gotten your stain down and put your piece together, it’s the finish that really makes a piece beautiful. If you can’t get that right, then you’re wasting your time.”

Mr. Harpster doesn’t seem to be wasting any time diving head first into the custom wood design business.

On Saturday, he unveiled a POW/MIA chair at Mission BBQ in Dover that he crafted that will sit empty in honor of prisoners of war and those soldiers left missing in action.

He normally works from around 9 in the morning until 2 a.m. and is already looking to move to a non-residential area and build a pole barn where he can do his work.

Mr. Harpster said that for him, this new endeavor is not about the money. He said he is a man of faith and that his work goes deeper than just mass-producing products.

Every one of his creations is unique. He said that he talks to each of his customers to create a piece that is “uniquely perfect for them.”

“None of us are promised tomorrow. What do you really leave behind?,” Mr. Harpster said. “As silly as it might sound, the idea that something I make is going to be in someone’s home and handed down from generation to generation, that is very important to me.

“In some little way, I’ve become an important part of that person’s family. How awesome is that? It’s probably the thing than means the most to me.”

To view his work, visit www.HarspterDesigns.com.

COMMENTARY: Delaware ERA a tool for progressive agenda

Delaware State News WP -

A proposed Equal Rights Amendment to Delaware’s state constitution is a misunderstood measure with a hidden agenda.

As presently constructed, House Bill 399 seeks to add to the state constitution: “Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged on account of sex.”

The wording is identical to the proposed federal Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) that failed nearly four decades ago.

While the measure was recently dealt a setback in the Senate when it did not garner the required majority to complete the first leg of the process, it is expected to be restored and voted on again in early June.

Regardless of its fate next month, the legislature will be dealing with it again — either next year for its second required consideration or soon afterward when proponents reintroduce it.

19dsn lawmakers Rich Collins by .

Rich Collins

Delaware ERA supporters assert it is needed to protect women and place them on an equal footing with men, but during the House debate supporters could not cite a single instance of discrimination the proposal would eliminate.

The equality of women is (rightfully) protected under multiple state and federal statutes. The Delaware Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits discrimination in employment based on sex (including pregnancy), marital status, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

Sex is also defined as a protected class in the Delaware Code.

Additionally, Section I of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states, in part, that no state shall “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

What many have failed to understand is that the proposed Delaware ERA, as a constitutional amendment, would solely apply to state, county and local governments — not the private sector. As such, it would not address the alleged “pay gap” issue, which ERA supporters have repeatedly cited as a prime reason for its adoption.

In fact, inequitable pay based on sex has been illegal for 55 years under the federal Equal Pay Act of 1963. A 2009 study conducted for the U.S. Department of Labor — “An Analysis of the Reasons for the Disparity in Wages Between Men and Women” — found that women accounted “for 51 percent of all workers in the high-paying management, professional, and related occupations.” It concluded that where pay differences existed, they were largely the result of occupational decisions and life choices — not sexual discrimination.

During House debate, Delaware Law School Dean Rod Smolla testified that “sex,” as it is understood in the amendment, would not be synonymous in Delaware law with the terms “gender identity” or “sexual identity.” Other supporters affirmed that the amendment would not have any bearing on nonprofit organizations, private businesses, same-sex schools, groups operating same-sex programs, or access to abortion.

When the House of Representatives approved the first leg of the measure, I opposed it. Having had experience in civil litigation, I was still concerned the amendment could be misinterpreted by the courts.

Sen. Anthony Delcollo clearly shared some of those same apprehensions. He authored three Senate amendments to address the bill’s perceived ambiguities. The first would have specified that the mere separation of the sexes would not be considered discrimination. The second would have specified that the ERA could not be used to grant or secure any right or funding related to abortion. The last would have specified that the ERA would apply solely to the State of Delaware and its political subdivisions.

These modest addendums would have only codified what ERA supporters claimed was already the case.

Yet when it came time to vote, all 11 Democrats in the Senate united to defeat the amendments — an unmistakably clear indication that supporters’ earlier statements about the amendment’s scope and impact were disingenuous.

The Equal Rights Amendment is a “win-win” political scheme launched by Delaware progressives. Legislators who vote against it will find themselves targeted by progressive challengers claiming the incumbents do not support equality for women. If enacted, the ERA will provide progressives with a powerful tool for achieving in the courtroom what they could not otherwise accomplish in the state capitol.

This has already happened elsewhere. In 1998, the New Mexico Supreme Court, citing that state’s Equal Rights Amendment, struck down a regulation restricting state-funded abortions. Backers of our ERA — which has wording almost identical to that of New Mexico — said the amendment could not be used for such a purpose. Apparently, they were unfamiliar with this well-documented case.

Judges are less interested in legislative intent than they are in interpreting the law for themselves. Since legislative debate is not binding on the courts, it is conceivable that a Delaware ERA could be used to advance controversial causes, while eliminating legal presumptions that presently aid women in the workplace and in the areas of alimony and child support.

The Delaware ERA is a wolf in sheep’s clothing that Delaware progressives are putting forth to advance their own extremist agenda — taking a lot of well-intentioned Delawareans along for an unsuspecting ride.

State Rep. Rich Collins is a Republican representing the areas of Millsboro, Dagsboro, Frankford, Selbyville and the unincorporated Gumboro.

From the Sports Editor: Drass made every player feel special

Delaware State News WP -

Mike Drass, shown coaching the Wesley College football team during a game last November, took the Wolverines from a small-college afterthought to a program that reached the NCAA Division III semifinals six times between 2006-14. (Wesley College photo)

DOVER — Three thousand miles separated Rocky Myers from Mike Drass.

But the miles didn’t seem to put any distance between the former Wesley College football standout and his old coach.

“Coach Drass was one of the few people that I gravitated to, that I maintained that connection, that relationship with,” said Myers. “When I was having successes or something good was going on in my life, I always did want to share it with him.”

So the phone call that Myers got in Los Angeles on Monday hit him like a ton of bricks.

Coach Drass was dead.

“I was just thinking, ‘Oh, I’ve got to call him,’ “ said Myers. “And then like two hours later G.R. called me. I thought it was my brother calling to say, ‘Hi.’ He was like, ‘Coach Drass passed away.’

“I tell you what. … you’re never ready for it. You think it’s still always 10 years away. One of the hardest things to deal with is, the last time I was home, I didn’t get to see him. I was home for the holidays and we were supposed to have lunch and we got a snowstorm.”

Myers is telling the story in Wesley’s Wentworth Gym on Friday night, surrounded by scores of other former Wolverines.

They’d all come together to tell stories and remember their coach, Drass, who died suddenly on Monday at the age of 57. Drass spent 29 years coaching football at Wesley — including the last 25 as head coach.

What was pretty clear was that, like Myers, they all felt a personal connection to Drass. And that’s not an easy bond to create in a sport where he might have over 150 players on the roster.

The scoreboard overlooking Drass Field honors the late Wolverines coach during Saturday’s tribute. Special to the Delaware State News/Gary Emeigh

“It didn’t matter what it was, Coach knew everyone’s problem,” said Lake Forest High grad Andre Summers, another former Wesley standout. “I remember specifically, one semester I didn’t do so well. He got me up at five o’clock in the morning and we went downstairs.

“I got to watch him work out while I got to study. He made me study. But that’s the kind of person he was. He wanted to make sure that everybody was going to succeed. He always had a solution for everything.”

Long after he graduated, Summers said he’d still get a text from Drass every year on his birthday.

“Happy birthday ‘25,’” the text would read, referring to Summers’ jersey number. “He was just a genuine person … a genuine person.

“It’s still a shock,” said Summers. “Something you’ll never forget.”

Like Myers, former star quarterback Joe Callahan was a winner of the Gagliardi Trophy — the top award in Division III football.

Of course it’s not surprising that Drass kept in touch with Callahan, who recently signed with the Philadelphia Eagles. But Callahan said Drass had that connection with countless other players, too.

“He treated everybody the same way,” said Callahan, who was on hand Friday. “No matter who you were or how much you played, he kept in touch. He was calling and he was involved in your life. I don’t think you get that type of coach and friend if you go to any other school.

“He was one of the most genuine people you’ll ever meet in your life. I was just talking to him the other day. He called me on the phone and was congratulating me. He just made an impact on so many people’s lives.”

Indeed, some of the former Wolverines who got up and spoke on Friday freely admitted they weren’t particularly good players. But it didn’t seem to diminish the affection they held for Drass.

Players talked about how Drass found ways to keep them in school, either financially or academically.

One player told the story of hearing someone opening his dorm-room door at eight in the morning. It was Drass, telling the youngster he had 10 minutes to get ready for class.

There were stories, too, about Drass’ days as an offensive lineman at Mansfield State, where he was a relentless competitor on the field and the life of the college social world off it.

Some speakers got choked up and had to regain their composure before they could finish. But there were also plenty of laughs and smiles at the Drass stories that players — some separated by a quarter century — could all relate to.

And that was one of Mike Drass’ special gifts. He could make the countless people he came in contact with feel like they had a personal relationship with him.

Because, in a lot of ways, they did.

After getting the phone call from his brother on Monday, Myers said he couldn’t even tell his wife the news right away.

But, when it came to making the unscheduled cross-country trip to be here this weekend, the Bowers Beach native didn’t think twice.

“There wasn’t even a hesitation,” he said. “There’s no way I would have missed it.

“It’s funny,” said Myers. “You listened to Coach Drass and he would know all his players’ names, all their parents’ names, what school they went to, what year they graduated … and I was always thinking, ‘How does he do it?’ He’d tell me about people and I’m like, ‘Coach, that was 10 or 15 years ago.’

“The only way that’s possible is because he truly cared about each and every one of us.”

Panthers rally but fall to Auks in girls lacrosse tournament

Delaware State News WP -

CLAYMONT — Down by six at halftime, the Polytech High girls’ lacrosse team wanted to chip away in the second half.

The Panthers won the second half, but came up just short in the game.

Polytech closed within three goals late but ran out of time, falling 12-9 to host Archmere Academy in the quarterfinals of the DIAA state tournament on Saturday afternoon.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the kids,” said Polytech coach Lynn Richardson. “We chipped away and fought back. Just that halftime deficit was probably a little too much to come back from against such a good team.”

Polytech, the fifth seed in the tournament, wrapped up the year with a 10-6 overall record.

Archmere, seeded fourth, advanced to play top seed Cape Henlopen on Tuesday. The site and time for that game has yet to be determined.

The Auks raced out to a 7-1 lead at halftime and were able to hold on despite Polytech’s eight goals in the second half.

Madi McKay first gave the Panthers some hope with a goal to draw within four with 18 minutes remaining. Archmere however responded with two goals in less than a minute.

Polytech went on a run of its own in the final 10 minutes and after Jazmine Winfield capped a stretch of three unanswered Polytech goals were down 12-9 in the final minute until time ran out.

“We never stop working,” said Polytech senior goalie Shannon Stephan. “We’re always trying to better ourselves as a team and we never quit.”

McKay paced the Panthers with four goals while Cecilia Carter added a hat-trick. Winfield and Claire Fuchs provided the other goals.

Stephan recorded nine saves on the day.

It was a defensive struggle for most of the first half. Both teams remained scoreless for the first 10 minutes of the contest until the Auks got on the board first.

Carter scored to equalize for the Panthers but that would be their only tally in the first half.

“Both teams played really well and were good defensively,” Stephan said. “It was really hard to score in the first half. Second half we definitely came back more.”

This was the second time the two teams had met this season.

Archmere defeated Polytech 21-10 on May 7 when the Auks scored 12 goals in the second half.

“We were preaching that the whole time that this game we were never going to quit, we were going to hang in there,” Richardson said. “Our first effort against Archmere wasn’t the best. I couldn’t be more proud of the way they fought today. We won the second half, we just ran out of time.”

Polytech has made the state tournament six of the eight years its been a varsity program.

The Panthers though will need to say goodbye to some of their stalwarts due to graduation.

Attackers Carter and McKay both ended their careers on Saturday. McKay leaves Polytech as the school’s all-time leading goalscorer.

Stephan meanwhile had played every single game in goal since the first game of her freshman year.

“We’re losing an awesome goalie and seven seniors,” Richardson said. “All of them are going to be hard to replace. They’ve set the tone and kept the tradition going.”

Local roundup: CR seeded 2nd, 5 Henlopen teams in boys lacrosse tourney

Delaware State News WP -

Caesar Rodney High earned the second overall seed and five Henlopen Conference teams made the DIAA boys’ lacrosse state tournament as the seedings were announced Saturday night.

Cape Henlopen, Dover, Milford and Smyrna also made the tournament with the Riders. Salesianum, the defending state champions are seeded No. 1.

Caesar Rodney (13-2) hosts No. 15 M.O.T. Charter on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. Cape Henlopen (11-4), the fourth seed, also has a Tuesday night home game against No. 13 Sanford at 7 p.m.

Dover (10-5) is seeded 10th and will travel to seventh seed Appoquinimink at 7 p.m. on Tuesday.

Milford (12-3) earned the eighth seed. The Buccaneers host ninth-seeded St. Andrews Wednesday night at 7 p.m.

Smyrna (9-6) is seeded 16th. The Eagles play Salesianum at Baynard Stadium on Wednesday at 7 p.m.

The quarterfinals are Saturday, May 26 with the semifinals on Wednesday, May 30.

The championship game will be either Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2.

Girls’ soccer

Indian River 2, Mount Pleasant 0: Isabella Binko scored two goals to lift the sixth-seeded Indians to a victory in the opening round of the DIAA state tournament.

Grace Engel and Samantha Whelen each assisted on a goal. Indian River held a 24-1 edge in shots.

Ursuline 4, Delmar 1: Logan Walls scored the first goal of the game for the Wildcats but Ursuline answered with four consecutive goals in the first round contest.

Delmar finished the season with an 8-5 record.

College baseball

Hens rained out of finale: The CAA baseball series finale between Delaware and Northeastern University was canceled due to inclement weather. The game will not be made up.

Delaware returns to action Wednesday morning at 11 a.m. at the CAA Tournament in Harrisonburg, Va. The cancellation locks the Blue Hens into the fifth spot in the CAA standings. The winner of Wednesday morning’s game will advance and face Northeastern on Thursday morning at 11 a.m.

Small sets Wilmington record: Dover High product Kendall Small had two hits for Wilmington University on Saturday top up his total for the year to 77, which sets a new single-season record for the Wildcats.

Wilmington fell 1-0 to New Haven on Saturday which eliminated the Wildcats from the East Regional. Small and Nick Grant (Milford) went 2-for-4.

State tournament updated schedules

Delaware State News WP -

BOYS LACROSSE

DIAA State Tournament

First Round

Tuesday

13-Sanford (9-6) at 4-Cape Henlopen (12-4), 7 p.m.

12-Caravel (12-3) at 5-Archmere (12-3), 7 p.m.

15-MOT Charter (11-4) at 2-Caesar Rodney (13-2), 7 p.m.

10-Dover (10-5) at 7-Appoquinimink (11-4), 7 p.m.

Wednesday

16-Smyrna (9-6) at 1-Salesianum (12-3), 7 p.m.

9-St. Andrew’s (11-4) at 8-Milford (13-3), 7 p.m.

14-Wilmington Charter (7-8) at 3-Delaware Military (11-4), at Tower Hill, 7 p.m.

11-Tatnall (10-5) at 6-Wilmington Friends (11-4), 7 p.m.

Quarterfinals

Saturday, May 26

Times and Sites TBA

Semifinals

Wednesday, May 30

Times and sites TBA

Final

Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2

Times and sites TBA

GIRLS LACROSSE

DIAA State Tournament

First Round

Thursday

8-Padua 15, 9-St. Andrew’s 14

7-Newark Charter 15, 10-Appoquinimink 8

5-Polytech 13, 12-Wilmington Charter 5

11-Tower Hill 12, 6-Dover 11

Quarterfinals

Saturday

4-Archmere 12, 5-Polytech 9

3-Ursuline 14, 11-Tower Hill 8

1-Cape Henlopen 18, 8-Padua 3

Monday

7-Newark Charter (13-3) vs. 2-St. Mark’s (15-0), time TBA

Semifinals

Tuesday

Times and sites TBA

4-Archmere (13-3) vs. 1-Cape Henlopen (15-1)

Newark Charter-St. Mark’s winner 3-Ursuline (14-2)

Final

Thursday

Times and sites TBA

SOFTBALL

DIAA State tournament

First round

Monday

Games start at 4 p.m. unless noted.

16-Milford (9-9) at 1 Caravel (14-3), 5 p.m.

9-St. Georges (11-6) at 8-Sussex Central (13-5)

13-Mt. Pleasant (14-3) at 4-Appoquinimink (17-1)

12-Delmar (11-7) vs. 5-Newark Charter (14-3), at Midway Softball Complex

15-Polytech (11-7) at 2-Smyrna (17-1)

10-Lake Forest (12-6) at 7-Indian River (13-5)

14-Padua (11-7) vs. 3-Delaware Military (15-3), at Midway Softball Complex, 3 p.m.

11-Wilm. Charter (11-7) at 6-Sussex Tech (16-2)

Quarterfinals

Tuesday

Times and sites TBA

Semifinals

Thursday

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Saturday, May 26

Times and sites TBA

GIRLS’ SOCCER

DIAA State Tournament

Division I

Quarterfinals

Wednesday

At Dover High

8-Cape Henlopen (7-4-1) vs. 1-Padua (14-1), 6 p.m.

6-Sussex Tech (8-4-2) vs. 3-Wilmington Charter (11-4), 8 p.m.

At Smyrna High

7-William Penn (10-4-1) vs. 2-Caesar Rodney (12-1-1), 6 p.m.

5-Appoquinimink (10-5) vs. 4-Middletown (10-4-1), 8 p.m.

Semifinals

Wednesday, May 30

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2

Times and sites TBA

Divison II

First round

Saturday

6-Indian River 2, 11-Mount Pleasant 0

12-Wilmington Friends 1, 5-Archmere 1, (4-3 penalty kicks)

9-Ursuline (7-7-1) 4, 8-Delmar 1.

10-Wilmington Christian 3, 7-Sussex Academy 1

Quarterfinals

Wednesday, May 23 or Thursday, May 24

Sites and times TBA

9-Ursuline (8-7-1) vs. 1-Tower Hill (13-0)

12-Wilmington Friends (7-7-2) vs. 4-Sanford (11-3-1)

10-Wilmington Christian (10-6) vs. 2-Delaware Military (12-2-1)

6-Indian River (9-4) vs. 3-Caravel (11-4)

Semifinals

Wednesday, May 30

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2

Times and sites TBA

Dover dance instructor, 66, pleads guilty in sex case involving 17-year-old

Delaware State News WP -

DOVER — A 66-year-old dance instructor pleaded guilty Friday afternoon to a sexual offense involving a 17-year-old boy in a Dover dance studio last year.

Alexander Boitsov

Alexander Boitsov, of Hockessin, had been scheduled for trial Monday in Superior Court before admitting to second-degree unlawful contact for an incident at The Dance Conservatory in June 2017, Delaware Department of Justice spokeswoman Nicole Magnusson said.

A presentence investigation was ordered and the defendant will be sentenced in October.

According to the DOJ, “Boitsov was accused of telling the victim, who was a student at The Dance Conservatory at 522 Otis Drive, to undress (inside a locker room) under the guise of providing instruction and then engaging in sexual contact with the victim.”

The youth reported the incident to his parents a few days later, the DOJ said, and Boitsov was arrested at a New York City ballet studio and extradited to Delaware.

Deputy Attorney General Kathleen Dickerson prosecuted the case. Attorneys Joseph W. Benson and Andrew G. Ahern represented the defendant and Judge Noel Primos oversaw a final case review on Thursday and was scheduled for a control hearing Friday.

Court documents on the case indicated a Russian interpreter was needed.

According to the DOJ, “Boitsov, who taught at a number of ballet studios in the region, also faces charges in Chester County, Pennsylvania, for sexually assaulting a student there.”

The date of offense was listed as June 23, 2017 in court documents, and the arrest came on July 11, 2017.

The Delaware case had earlier trial dates of Dec. 4, 2017, Feb. 5, 2018, March 5, 2018 and April 30, 2018 delayed. Boitsov early declined a plea deal, according to the defense in court last year.

On Sept. 4, 2017 Mr. Boitsov was indicted by a grand jury on charges of second-degree unlawful sexual contact (a violent Class F felony in Delaware Code) and endangering the welfare of a child.

Some good news in job data: Del. saw slight gain in 2017

Delaware State News WP -

DOVER — Rumors of Delaware’s economic demise have been slightly exaggerated.

Revisions in the state’s unemployment data show the state gained 2,900 jobs in 2017, compared to the prior estimate of zero change.

For the third month in a row, Delaware’s unemployment rate fell by a tenth of a percent. It now sits at 4.2 percent, although that remains behind the national average, which declined to 3.9 percent last month — the lowest since 2000.

“The payroll data that finally came through for the end of 2017 show the economy, job growth did slow toward the end of last year, but it didn’t stop like the original estimates had indicated,” George Sharpley, chief of the Office of Occupational and Labor Market Information, said Friday.

The estimates are calculated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Delaware Department of Labor based on surveys sent to businesses and are later modified as payroll data is received by the government.

The state and national unemployment rates were 4.6 and 4.4 percent, respectively, in April 2017. Before March 2017, Delaware’s unemployment rate had been better than the national average for more than a decade.

Kent County — and in particular Dover — continue to lag behind the rest of the state, with Kent posting an unemployment rate of 4 percent, while 5 percent of people in Dover were out of work. Those numbers, unlike the statewide rate, are not seasonally adjusted, however.

Over the past 12 months, the transportation/utilities and professional/business services fields have seen a gain of 4,000 jobs, although Dr. Sharpley said those figures are skewed by a change in how Amazon, which has a warehouse in Middletown, is classified.

He expects the national unemployment rate will soon plateau, allowing Delaware to catch up.

“Right now, we’re kind of moving largely in the same trend as them, it’s just we’ve been half a point or so above them,” he said.
Overall, the data released Friday is good news, but Dr. Sharpley cautioned it should not be read as a sign the Delaware economy is booming.

“The economy is kind of tepid,” he said. “It’s not great, it’s not bad, but it didn’t slow down as much as we previously thought. We’re just kind of muddling along.”

Middletown High student held after handgun found in bag

Delaware State News WP -

MIDDLETOWN — A handgun was discovered in a student’s backpack following a confrontation at Middletown High late Friday morning, a district superintendent said later in the day.

In an e-mail to parents and staff just after 4 p.m. the Appoquinimink School District detailed the incident, with Superintendent Dr. Matt Burrows explaining that “Shortly before noon today, a quick-thinking teacher called down to the office to report an altercation between two students at Middletown High.

“Staff were able to separate the teens before any blows were thrown, and no one was injured. But, a check of one student’s bag revealed a handgun.”

Dr. Burrows said that law enforcement quickly responded to a 911 call from the school and “the student was taken into custody without incident.”

A Delaware State Police criminal investigation was ongoing, according to Dr. Burrows. An attempt to contact State Police for more information was not immediately successful.

Responding school staff – including Michelle Semonelle, Brant Perry, Joe Lahutsky and Principal Dr. Matt Donovan – received praise from the superintendent.

“ … let me emphasize that the real heroes today were our Middletown High School staff,” Dr. Burrows said. “Their vigilance, quick thinking and solid instincts contained the situation before it even began.”

The student in question was suspended immediately and taken from the scene by responding police, Dr. Burrows said.

“Following our Code of Conduct, and pending the conclusion of a formal investigation, he will not be allowed further contact with students or staff, and will not be allowed back on school property,” Dr. Burrows said. “Due to the seriousness of the infraction, this student will not be returning to our schools.”

The superintendent also said, “Illegal and dangerous behavior is not tolerated in the Appoquinimink School District. Weapons of any kind are not permitted on or near school property.”

District staff will evaluate the circumstances moving forward to assure safety is maintained, Dr. Burrows said.

“As the parent of two teens, I know how unnerving it is to hear that our community has experienced an incident like this,” he said.

“I can reassure you that we’ll do our best to make sure something like this doesn’t occur again, and that we are, and will continue to be, vigilant stewards of our students and schools.”

The superintendent urged parents to remain aware of possible threats and speak up with concerns.

“In closing, I’d like to leave you with this thought,” he said. “When it comes to school safety, vigilance is our best defense. Please help the staff and I as we communicate to our children, “If you see something, say something.”

A few minutes after the first email, Dr. Burrows sent another message addressing an unfounded rumor that MHS was on lockdown status.
“Principal Donovan had an incident in his building requiring that a student be removed,” Dr. Burrows said.

“While that was underway, the school declared a ‘hold’ so that hallways could be cleared. But there is no lockdown. The school simply applied a common-sense approach to limit disruption.”

COMMENTARY: Failure of Farm Bill is a ‘missed opportunity’

Delaware State News WP -

For most of us, $1.40 is not much. In fact, when you walk up and down grocery store aisles shopping for milk, bread, or chicken, you realize just how far that goes — not very. Yet for those in need, $1.40, the average cost per meal on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), is the difference between being nourished or going hungry.

No one knows that trade-off better than the 42 million people nationwide who rely on SNAP to help feed their families in times of transition — an average of 10 months per family.

Lisa Blunt Rochester

At its core, H.R. 2, the Farm Bill’s mission is two-fold — to help strengthen farming communities through programs like crop insurance and rural broadband, as well as helping families put food on the table through SNAP.

Agriculture affects all communities. It’s the food we eat, grow, and trade. I always say, “It’s urban, rural, and global,” and that’s why I fought hard to get on the House Agriculture Committee.

Once the GOP Farm Bill was released last month, I traveled across my state to hear from my constituents about the bill’s impact on Delaware. I met with farmers, emergency food providers, supermarket owners, and state agencies. I even attended a graduation ceremony for Delaware Wonder participants — one of 10 pilot programs authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill that is providing workforce training and pathways to employment for SNAP recipients.

But the conversation that surprised me the most was one I had recently with a father.

He shared how years ago SNAP and public housing allowed him and his wife to raise three healthy daughters. With these supports, this father was the first in his family to graduate from high school, college, and move out of poverty. He paid that debt back in multiple ways through service. He went on to become a social worker, a school administrator, and subsequently, was elected city council president.

The value of service was then passed down.

One daughter worked in the White House and is now a professor of social work at Rutgers University. The second daughter became an engineer and worked for the U.S. Army protecting our troops, and his eldest grew up to be a congresswoman — that dad is my dad.

Like millions of others, SNAP helped my family when we needed it most. Stories like ours are not often discussed but are an example of the difference access to affordable, nutritious food can make in supporting people during temporary hardships.

I ask my colleagues to consider if this bill really does get the policy right? Is it worth cutting $20 billion from SNAP — hurting children, seniors, and people with disabilities — to pay for an untested, severely underfunded program?

I firmly believe that this is a missed opportunity — the result of a flawed process that shut Democrats out. The good news is: It’s not too late to do what’s right.

By voting H.R. 2 down, we have a chance to go back to the drawing board, and craft a genuinely bipartisan Farm Bill. We can put forward legislation that tackles food insecurity and equips SNAP participants with the tools they need to earn a good living in today’s economy. The hopes, the dreams, the aspirations of 42 million people are in our hands. Let’s not let them down.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Del., is a member of the House Committee on Agriculture. On Friday, the House Republican Farm Bill failed to pass the House by a vote of 198-213.

Cape Henlopen wins boys’ lacrosse conference title

Delaware State News WP -

FREDERICA — It took just 20 seconds for the Cape Henlopen High boys’ lacrosse program to get on the board in Friday night’s Henlopen Conference title game against Milford High.

Senior Tim Kelley’s goal at the 11:40 mark of the first quarter set the tempo for Cape’s offensive attack, setting the Vikings up for a 23-2 Henlopen Conference championship victory in the pouring rain at DE Turf.

“Each game we try to get a good start and establish a good tempo,” said Vikings head coach Mark D’Ambrogi. “Tim Kelley got open early and they found him – it’s always nice to get a good start and we continued and built off of that.”

The 23 goals marked a season-high for the Cape Vikings (11-4), who will now turn its attention to next week’s DIAA state tournament as they await the bracket release.

“We were ready to go. Once we get our chemistry back I think we can be a really good team,” Kelley said of the win. “There’s some games where we’re off for whatever reason, but games like this when we’re all on the same page we can really play well.”

Spreading the ball around and using effective ball movement on offense proved to be successful for Cape Friday night. Halfway through the game’s opening quarter, the Vikings had built a 5-0 lead with goals from five different players.

Junior Luke D’Ambrogi, the game’s leading scorer with five goals and three assists, followed up Kelley’s 20-second score with a goal of his own at the 9:35 mark.

Kelley and D’Ambrogi would go on to score two goals each in the opening quarter as Cape built a 10-1 lead by the end of the first.

“I think we have a lot of guys who all share the ball well and can all do sometime positive for our team and tonight was a good example of that,” said coach D’Ambrogi.

Six more goals in the second quarter handed Cape a 16-2 halftime advantage.

Cape credited its fast start to the team’s 10-9 loss against Appoquinimink just a week prior.

“Well we lost to Appo a week ago, 10-9, and we were really frustrated because we thought we should have won, so we were ready to pounce on somebody,” Luke D’Ambrogi said. “It was good to get to an 8-0, then a 10-1, start tonight so we definitely feel good about it.”

“We were all really mad after that Appo loss and we were ready to get out and beat somebody like that,” Kelley added. “We’ve just been waiting for the opportunity. Even though we’ve played another game since that Appo loss already, we didn’t think we played that well against Friends on Tuesday, so we’ve been waiting to go off like this.”

With a 14-goal lead at the halftime break, the second-half included a running clock as the Vikings piled on seven more goals in the third and fourth quarters to seal the victory.

Including D’Ambrogi’s five goals and Kelley’s two goals, Cape had 10 different players score at least one goal and seven different players record at least one assist.

Sophomore Finbar Rishko scored four goals; freshman Gabe Best and junior J.P. Heid each recorded hat tricks; junior Jack Dennis netted a pair of goals.

Junior Adem Tekmen, freshman Blake Gipko, senior Ryan Diacont and senior Aarin Burton scored one goal each.

Juniors Jonathan Gaglione and Jordan Passwaters netted the two first-half goals for Milford.

“We love to see the guys who don’t usually get a lot of playing score and get assists because it makes us feel like more of an all-around team,” Kelley said. “I wouldn’t feel as good about winning tonight if I was in the whole time and didn’t get to see the backups go in and do their job, get some clears and score some goals, too. So, that really helped us out a lot and I think it brings us together more.”

“Winning the conference title means a lot,” Luke D’Ambrigo said. “We didn’t win it last year because we lost to Caesar Rodney at home, so we didn’t get a chance to play in this game and Caesar Rodney ended up winning it. You always love to get a win in your last game right before the playoffs start, so it felt good and we’re confident and ready to go.”

 

Updated state tournament schedules

Delaware State News WP -

With the wet weather causing some changes, here’s the updated schedules for the upcoming DIAA state tournaments.

GIRLS LACROSSE

DIAA State Tournament

First Round

Thursday

8-Padua 15, 9-St. Andrew’s 14

7-Newark Charter 15, 10-Appoquinimink 8

5-Polytech 13, 12-Wilmington Charter 5

11-Tower Hill 12, 6-Dover 11

Quarterfinals

Saturday

5-Polytech (10-6) at 4-Archmere (12-3), 11 a.m.

3-Ursuline (13-2) at 11-Tower Hill (11-5), 11 a.m.

7-Newark Charter (13-3) vs. 2-St. Mark’s (15-0), at Tower Hill, 3 p.m.

8-Padua (10-5) at 1-Cape Henlopen (14-1), 7 p.m.

Semifinals

Tuesday, May 22

Times and sites TBA

Final

Thursday, May 22

Times and sites TBA

 

SOFTBALL

DIAA State tournament

First round

Monday, May 21

Games start at 4 p.m. unless noted.

16-Milford (9-9) at 1 Caravel (14-3), 5 p.m.

9-St. Georges (11-6) at 8-Sussex Central (13-5)

13-Mt. Pleasant (14-3) at 4-Appoquinimink (17-1)

12-Delmar (11-7) vs. 5-Newark Charter (14-3), at Midway Softball Complex

15-Polytech (11-7) at 2-Smyrna (17-1)

10-Lake Forest (12-6) at 7-Indian River (13-5)

14-Padua (11-7) vs. 3-Delaware Military (15-3), at Midway Softball Complex, 3 p.m.

11-Wilm. Charter (11-7) at 6-Sussex Tech (16-2)

Quarterfinals

Tuesday, May 22

Times and sites TBA

Semifinals

Thursday, May 24

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Saturday, May 26

Times and sites TBA

 

GIRLS’ SOCCER

DIAA State Tournament

Division I

Quarterfinals

Wednesday, May 23

At Dover High

8-Cape Henlopen (7-4-1) vs. 1-Padua (14-1), 6 p.m.

6-Sussex Tech (8-4-2) vs. 3-Wilmington Charter (11-4), 8 p.m.

At Smyrna High

7-William Penn (10-4-1) vs. 2-Caesar Rodney (12-1-1), 6 p.m.

5-Appoquinimink (10-5) vs. 4-Middletown (10-4-1), 8 p.m.

Semifinals

Wednesday, May 30

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2

Times and sites TBA

Divison II

First round

Saturday, May 19

11-Mount Pleasant (9-4-2) vs. 6-Indian River (8-4), at DE Turf, 12 p.m.

12-Wilmington Friends (6-7-2) vs. 5-Archmere (10-5), at Caravel, 12 p.m.

9-Ursuline (7-7-1) vs. 8-Delmar (8-4), at DE Turf, 2 p.m.

10-Wilmington Christian (9-6) vs. 7-Sussex Academy (10-2), at DE Turf, 4 p.m.

Quarterfinals

Wednesday, May 23 or Thursday, May 24

Sites and times TBA

Ursuline-Delmar winner vs. 1-Tower Hill (13-0)

Archmere-Wilmington Friends winner vs. 4-Sanford (11-3-1)

Wilmington Christian-Sussex Academy winner vs. 2-Delaware Military (12-2-1)

Mount Pleasant-Indian River winner vs. 3-Caravel (11-4)

Semifinals

Wednesday, May 30

Times and sites TBA

Finals

Friday, June 1 or Saturday, June 2

Times and sites TBA

 

 

Most weekend state tournament action moved to Monday

Delaware State News WP -

The rainy weather hitting the state has washed out much of the DIAA state tournament action scheduled for this weekend.

The state track & field championships, slated to start today at Dover High, have now been moved to Monday afternoon. The competition is now a one-day event slated to start at 3 p.m.

The DIAA at first hoped to make the event a one-day event on Saturday but the forecast isn’t any better.

“The forecast just does not give any hope for a time for safe competition,” DIAA executive director Tommie Neubauer wrote in an email announcing the decision.

Also, the softball state tourney, which was scheduled to get underway on Saturday has been moved to Monday because of the expected rain and wet field conditions.

All of the softball games will start at 4 p.m. on Monday with the exception of Milford’s game at Caravel, which will begin at 5 p.m. In the matchups involving Henlopen Conference teams, Smyrna hosts Polytech, Indian River hosts Lake Forest, Sussex Central hosts St. Georges and Sussex Tech hosts Wilmington Charter.

The tourney is still slated to continue with the quarterfinals on Tuesday.

The boys’ and girls’ tennis tourneys were slated to begin on Saturday at various sites around the state. The first round will now be played on Monday at 1 p.m. with the second round to follow.

The remaining rounds of the tennis tournament will then be moved back a day.

The DIAA girls’ lacrosse is still scheduled to be played on Saturday. In the two games involving downstate schools, Polytech plays at Archmere at 11 a.m. with Cape Henlopen hosting Padua at 7 p.m.

 

Delaware colleges see Carney's bid, raise 800 percent

Delaware News Topix -

Delaware colleges ask for 800 percent extra in capital funding UD, DSU and Deltech are collectively seeking an 800-percent increase over Gov. John Carney's proposal. Check out this story on delawareonline.com: https://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/politics/2018/05/17/delaware-colleges-ask-state-massive-funding-hike/617275002/ Students pose for a photo at the Delaware State University 132nd commencement ceremony where over 700 graduates took part in the ceremony.

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