It was a banner spring season for Newark Charter High School as the Patriots baseball, softball, girls lacrosse and girls soccer teams all advanced to their respective state tournaments. Track and field had its best finish ever at states, and the golf team qualified two for the state championships.
“We did have a really successful spring, which capped off a successful year for the Patriot athletic program,” athletic director Greg Shivery said. “Our student-athletes and coaches worked very hard this year to show success both in the classroom and in the athletic arena. I’m proud of all of our Patriot teams.”
The girls soccer team made the deepest run in the playoffs of the four spring team sports, advancing to the semifinals of the Div. 2 state tournament before being knocked off 1-0 by Tower Hill.
“The girls really came together as the season progressed, and we became a very dangerous team,” head coach Matt Hammond explained.
The Patriots finished the regular season with a 10-5 record and then defeated Brandywine High School and Archmere Academy in the state tournament to advance to the May 29 semifinal game at Dover High School. Despite the loss in the semis, Hammond is optimistic about the program’s future.
“Three of our losses came to teams that played in the [Div. 1 and 2] finals, so we are right there,” Hammond pointed out. “The good news is that we only have two seniors, so the future is bright. If the girls put in the work during the offseason, they should have a great chance to take the next step as a program.”
Senior Lawson Schultz and junior Danielle Ferris received first-team all-state honors, and junior Claire Reader was a second-team selection.
Newark Charter’s baseball team finished the regular season with an impressive 16-2 record, earning a first-round bye in the state tournament. Unfortunately, the Patriots didn’t make it out of the second round, falling 2-0 to Delaware Military Academy. Despite the disappointment of an earlier-than-expected exit, head coach Brian Lesher was proud of his team’s accomplishments.
“Winning the Diamond State Conference and being recognized as a top 10 team all year is a huge accomplishment for this team,” he said. “They can be proud to be a part of a winning program and be proud to wear Newark Charter baseball gear around town. They really took our program to another level.”
Junior Brett Callahan was a first-team all-state selection as an outfielder and received honorable mention status as a pitcher. Junior Trey Matthews (pitcher) and senior John Ueltzhoffer (designated hitter) earned second-team all-state honors.
The girls lacrosse team earned a trip into the postseason for the second straight year after posting a 12-3 regular-season record. The Patriots earned the No. 8 seed and faced No. 9 Tatnall in the opening round. Despite leading by a point at the half, the Patriots couldn’t hang on and fell to the Hornets, 12-10.
The softball team made the tournament for the third straight year after putting together a four-game win streak to close out the regular season and finish with 13 victories. However, the Patriots’ struggles in the first round of the tournament continued, losing 3-2 to Indian River High School.
“Despite losing in the first round of the DIAA state tournament, the coaching staff was extremely happy with our season,” head coach Jessica Wolfe said. “We played one of the toughest schedules in the state, and all five of our losses came against teams that qualified for the tournament.”
Senior Bella Hagen earned third-team all-state honors as an outfielder and seven Patriots earned all-conference honors.
“We are going to miss this senior class greatly, on and off the field, however we had seven underclassmen start for us this season, so the future is promising,” Wolfe added.
Junior Ryan Wilson and sophomore Nate Longo qualified for the state golf tournament, and the girls track and field team placed sixth and the boys 11th, respectively, in the state meet.
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