Roundup: Smyrna, Dover earn byes in baseball state tourney

Smyrna and Dover High both earned first-round byes as seven Henlopen Conference teams made the 20-team field for the DIAA baseball state tournament.

The tourney added four squads this year to reach 20, with the top four teams receiving byes for the opening round.

The tournament starts with five games on Monday. In contests involving downstate teams, 12th-seeded Sussex Tech (10-8) hosts No. 18 Sussex Central (9-9) with 20th-seeded Milford (9-9) playing at No. 13 Red Lion Christian (16-2). Both games start at 4 p.m.

On Tuesday, second-seeded Smyrna (15-3) hosts the Sussex Tech-Sussex Central winner with fourth-seeded Dover (16-2) hosting the winner of the Milford-Red Lion contest.

Also on Tuesday, eighth-seeded Cape Henlopen (13-5) hosts No. 9 Salesianum (13-5) with No. 11 Polytech (13-5) travelling to sixth-seeded Conrad (15-3). All those games start at 4 p.m.

Cape Henlopen 6, Smyrna 4: The Vikings snapped the Eagles’ nine-game winning streak in the Henlopen North matchup.

Smyrna (15-3 overall) still won the program’s first North title with a conference record of 12-1.

William Penn 4, Caesar Rodney 2: The Riders scored twice in the bottom of the first but couldn’t make the lead stand up in the season-ending loss.

Carlton Voak had two hits, including a triple, for CR.

St. Mark’s 3, Milford 0: Michael Robertson and Aaron Thornley combined to pitch a seven-hitter for the Buccaneers.

Woodbridge 6, Delmarva Christian 5: The Raiders used a four-run sixth inning to rally for the season-ending win.

Caravel 11, Sussex Central 0: D.J. Doherty had both of the Golden Knights’ hits in their nonconference loss.

Seaford 11, Delmar 7: The Blue Jays ended the season with a Henlopen Cnference win over the Wildcats.

Softball

Polytech 6, Smyrna 5: The Panthers erupted for five runs in the top of the sixth to pull out the Henlopen Conference win.

Amana Waishes and Whitney DeMora both hit two-run homers in the sixth while Hayley Friess drove in a run on a sacrfice fly.

Olyvia Smith and Autumn Wilson scored two runs apiece for Smyrna.

Cape Henlopen 21, St. Mark’s 3: The Vikings cruised to the nonconference victory on Friday.

Sussex Tech 5, Wm. Penn Charter, Pa. 1: The Ravens picked up the nonconference win.

Dover 18, Del. Public Safety & Security 0: The Senators collected 14 hits as the evened their record at 8-8.

Lacrosse

BOYS, Tower Hill 17, Sussex Tech 3: The Hillers built a 12-1 halftime lead before posting the victory.

College baseball

Split leaves UD short of playoffs: Delaware knocked off league-leading UNC-Wilmington, 11-7, in the opener before falling to the Seahawks, 6-2, in the nightcap as part of a Colonial Athletic Association doubleheader on Friday.

Delaware finished the season with an overall mark of 32-22 but fell short of a berth in the CAA Tournament with a 10-14 league mark. The Hens failed to advance to the CAA Tournament for the first time since 2011 but their 32 wins were the most since the 2013 squad went 33-22.

UNCW, the defending CAA champions, improved to 37-15 and captured the regular-season title with a 16-6 mark in conference play.

“If you would have told me at the beginning of the year that we would win 32 games, I would have said ‘Okay, we’ll take that and we are in the playoffs,’” said Delaware coach Jim Sherman. “But unfortunately we are not in the playoffs and we fell short of that goal.

“We had four freshmen in Brandon Walter, Nick Patten, Kyle Baker and Kevin Mohollen who all had great years,” continued Sherman. “That was a bright spot. We get almost everybody back except for a few guys and that’s another bright spot. We have a good nucleus and we are excited about next year.”

The Hens used a six-run first inning in the opener to take control. Baker and Jeremy Ake each hit home runs and collected two RBI and Nick Tierno also brought home two runs to lead the offense.

Baker’s two-run home run, an RBI double by Diaz Nardo (Cape Henlopen), run-scoring singles by Ake and James Meeker, and a sacrifice fly by Doug Trimble highlighted the six-run first inning.

Hornets eliminated in MEAC: Delaware State fell to Coppin State, 15-4, in a MEAC Tournament elimination game to end their season Thursday evening.

The Hornets dropped to the losers’ bracket after a 10-5 loss to North Carolina Central in the opening round of the tournament earlier in the day.

Coppin State scored in six of the seven innings, highlighted by a seven-run fourth.

Darien Percell, who began his collegiate career at Delaware State, was 3-for-5 with a home run and six RBI to lead the Eagles’ 14-hit attack.

Freshman Evan Regez had two hits to lead the Hornets (13-37).

College track & field

Two downstaters qualify for NCAAs: A pair of standout sophomores and downstate products for the Delaware women’s outdoor track & field team will be continuing their seasons next week.

It became official on Thursday that Blue Hen sprinter Tyra Reid (Caesar Rodney) and discus thrower Sarah Hillman (Polytech) have qualified for the NCAA Division I East Regionals and will compete at the championships that run May 26-28 at the University of North Florida’s Hodges Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla.

Reid will compete in the 400-meter dash preliminaries on May 26. She has the 39th-ranked time out of 48 competitors for the regionals.

Hillman will be among those vying for the discus title when competition begins on May 27. Hillman’s season-best throw ranks 38th out of 48 competitors for the regionals.

College softball

DSU’s Gazzola honored: Delaware State’s Nicole Gazzola garnered National Fastpitch Coaches Association honors for the second time of her career.

Starting all 48 games in center field, Gazzola set DSU single-season marks for most hits (89) and runs (63). Her hits and runs totals also led the MEAC, in addition to tallying a conference-best 37 stolen bases.

Nationally, Gazzola finished with the second-highest batting average (.497), while her runs and stolen bases per game averages ranked fourth (1.31) and 10th (0.77), respectively.

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