By Lynn Schofer

The Seaford Blue Jay girls’ soccer team fell to Delmarva Christian, 4-2, in a match recently. The Royals scored first at the third minute on an assist from Erin Riccio to Courtney Bayley. The Royals suffered several off-side calls to stop the goal attacks on Seaford. The Royals claimed another goal at the fifth minute when the ball was crossed to Mia Elliott who finished the play with a score. 

Seaford goalie Maddie Breitenbach made numerous one on one saves in the match including a stop at the 16th minute of play to keep the score at 2-0. The Royals were awarded a penalty kick at the 25th minute and the goal was made by Bayley for a 3-0 lead. At the 32nd minute Jillian Breitenbach took advantage of the collapsed Royals’ defense and scored the first goal for the Blue Jays unassisted.    

Delmarva Christian’s Myra Browning and Seaford’s Cailee Layton come together after the two teams’ recent soccer match. Photo by Lynn Schofer

In the second half, the saves continued to mount for Maddie Breitenbach, who finished the match with 17 saves. At the 58th minute the biggest show of sportsmanship took place by the Royals. Seaford midfielder Cailee Layton scored for the Blue Jays. Cailee, who was born with Down Syndrome, has been part of the Blue Jays soccer program for years and when Delmarva Christian goalkeeper Myra Browning learned about Cailee she asked her coach if it would be okay if she allowed Cailee to score.

“This is the nicest and best show of sportsmanship shown to Cailee,” said Seaford coach Catherine McMahon. “What a special moment for Cailee and both teams.” 

 “I have a half-sister that has Down Syndrome and several members in my family with special needs. People with Down Syndrome are the most kind hearted people you will ever meet,” Browning said after the match. 

Myra messaged her coach and was given the green light. “It meant a lot that my coach allowed me to do this because Down Syndrome kids need more awareness and appreciation because they are so kind hearted and would do anything for you,” Browning said. “I know kids with special needs get bullied sometimes and it is really hard to play on the field when you don’t know the opposing team and their behaviors.”  

The goalie said she wants to bring awareness, “I don’t get to see my sister very often but when she was young people bullied her and it made me angry and frustrated so I want to stand up to stop bullying. They melt my heart and I just really love them so I wanted to make her day.”   

The Royals’ Ainsley Bell scored a fourth goal at the 65th minute for the 4-1 score and win for Delmarva Christian.