Cavs Corner: Cavs Continue Success as Regular Season Nears End

Contributors: Bria Irizarry, Colleen Gunning and Ryan Killen
Twitter: @daathletics
Instagram: @dacavsathletics

Durham Academy sports are in the second to last week of a shortened 2020 fall season. Both the girls cross-country team and volleyball team remain undefeated, and the field hockey team has won its last three games, two of which have gone into overtime! DA volleyball is off to its most successful start in more than five years, giving up just one set in the last five games. While the season has been a bit shorter than usual, our teams have not been short on fans. Our virtual sidelines have produced an incredible turnout, accumulating hundreds and, in some cases, thousands of fans across all levels of competition!

We hope you will continue to join us as girls tennis and field hockey compete one last time Friday evening, while volleyball and boys soccer will wrap up regular season competition next week. DA is the official host of the Triangle Independent Schools Athletic Conference cross-country championships next week at WakeMed Soccer Park, and the girls golf team will compete in the TISAC championship match at Heritage Country Club in Wake Forest on Tuesday afternoon.

We are looking forward to our Parents Athletic Committee fundraiser at Chipotle (Durham's Watkins Road location, near Home Depot) on Wednesday, Oct. 21, from 4–8 p.m. DA Athletics will receive 33% of the proceeds from the night, with purchases made both in store and online benefiting the school.

Here's how to participate:

  • If you are placing your order at in person, you can show this flyer or say that you're with DA Athletics at the cash register.

  • If you are placing your order via the Chipotle website or app, enter the code XBKAJWX.

Please join our family — and hopefully many others — in picking up your dinner that night and celebrating the Cavaliers! All money raised will benefit our teams, coaches and student athletes!  


DA cross-country had another dominating performance at home last Thursday when both the girls and boys teams took first place in their respective races. The boys team was led by senior Kabir Khwaja, who took first place overall with a time of 17:53. On the girls side, ninth-grader Allison Hall claimed first place, crossing the finish line at 20:49.

The boys team faced Wake Christian Academy, and both Khwaja and classmate Ryan Norris crossed the finish line nearly 2 minutes ahead of the first Bulldog runner. DA seniors Lee Anderson, Jay Shanahan and Tharindu Fernando rounded out the top five for DA, helping the Cavs overcome the Bulldogs 18–43.

The DA girls brought in the top six runners, in just under 6 minutes, in their race vs. Saint Mary’s School and Wake Christian. A little over a minute after Hall finished, senior Lucy Steiner crossed the finish line in second place. Three minutes later, sophomore Sara Lipsitch took third. Seniors Anna-Catherine Wilson, Abby Goldman and Maggie Chambliss were the next to finish, all ahead of the visiting team to help DA to a score of 15. Saint Mary’s came in second place with 50 points, and Wake Christian took third place with a total of 71 points.

Cavalier cross-country returns to the course this afternoon to face North Raleigh Christian Academy at 4 p.m. before heading to the TISAC championships next week.

Girls Golf

The Cavs suffered their first loss of the season to No. 1 NRCA on Tuesday with a final 237–249. Sophomore Ona Lukes tied the school record with a 2 over par 74. Eighth-grader Saia Rampersaud shot 80, and ninth-grader Evelyn Guyer came in with 95 to score for DA. The Cavs will face NRCA again this Thursday for another 18 holes at Mill Creek Golf Course.

Field Hockey

The Cavs are 3–2 on the season following wins this week over Ravenscroft and Cary Christian. In Friday’s win over the Ravens, Senior Katherine Lantzy scored two goals late in the  fourth period to rally the Cavs to a 2–1 win, sweeping their conference rival this season. 

Wednesday night’s matchup against Cary Christian saw a similar energy late in the game, with multiple good looks on both sides — but nothing came from it, forcing overtime play. Junior Mirella Kades proved big in goal, stopping tough shots from the Knights, including a major fast-break opportunity with an expiring overtime clock. It wasn’t until 4 minutes into the second overtime that sophomore London Burham connected with junior Molly Hunter in front of the net to put one past the Knights goalkeeper, sealing the 1–0 double overtime win. The Cavs will take the field one more time this season in Friday’s home game vs. Cary Academy.

Boys Soccer

Boys soccer followed up a tough defeat to Ravenscroft last Tuesday with a convincing 3–0 victory on Senior Night last Thursday. The Cavs came out of the gates flying, creating two golden chances within 2 minutes of the opening whistle. 

After sophomore Robert Hillhouse forced a big save, on the ensuing cross, senior Charlie Robb slotted the ball into the back of the net, but it was ruled offside. With 22 minutes showing on the clock in the first half, senior Walker Benjamin’s corner tipped over the goalkeeper’s hands and straight into the path of Robb, who buried the chance from 5 yards out. Four minutes later, senior Gavin Schulz played a through ball into Hillhouse, who floated it past the goalkeeper to double the Cavs’ advantage. Once again, just 4 minutes later, junior Lars Oehler put in a free kick from nearly half field. The ball slid through the keeper’s hands and went straight into the back of the net to put the Cavs up 3–0 before halftime. 

In the second half, Wake Christian managed to create one really good opportunity about 9 minutes in, but the shot was pulled just wide. After that, the Cavs defense, led by senior Henry Leasure, held firm and withstood any danger Wake Christian presented. It was an important bounce-back win for the Cavs. Unfortunately, Tuesday’s game at Ravenscroft had to be pushed back due to rain. That will be made up today before the Cavs head to North Raleigh on Friday.

Girls Tennis

Girls tennis produced a dominant performance last Thursday vs. Saint Mary’s on Senior Night, winning by a score of 9–0. It was quite remarkable that the Cavs came away with all 9 points, considering how close a few of the matchups were. None was closer than the matchup on court 1 in doubles. Senior Ameya Bellamkonda and ninth-grader Godiya Mangai won 10–8 in a tiebreaking set after being tied 8–8 with Saint Mary’s top pairing. In singles, the Cavs rolled to victories on courts 4–6. Bellamkonda, the lone senior on Senior Night, won a hard-fought first set 7–5 before winning the second set 6–2. Junior Mukta Dharmapurikar was locked into an extremely tight matchup on court 1. She lost the first set 4–6, won the second 7–5, and edged out the tiebreaker 1–8 to complete the Cavs’ perfect 9–0 victory. On Tuesday, the Cavs turned in another great performance vs. Wake Christian, winning 9–0. The Cavs dominated from start to finish, dropping a season-low of only four games as a team all day. The two 9–0 wins put the Cavs at 6–1 on the season.


DA volleyball is now 5–0 on the season after a thrilling third-set win 34–32 on Tuesday night vs. Grace Christian Academy. The Cavs have only given up 1 set in the five-game season thus far, and they are off to the program's best start in more than five years.

Tuesday night’s game vs. the Eagles started strong, as the Cavs went up early off of decisive serves from junior Isabella Steinberg. DA’s offense — backed by sophomores Hannah Kohn, Olivia Kohn and Alexis Gelber — proved to be too much for the visiting Eagles, and the Cavs won the first set 25–9.

DA’s offense continued to push the Eagles despite going down by 4 early in the set, but the Cavs took the second set 25–15. Grace Christian stormed back in the third set to tie the game at 26 and again at 31. DA held out and eventually made a strong hit to the back left side of the court to end the match at 34–32. 

The Cavs return to action on Tuesday night when they face Wake Christian Academy in Kirby Gym.



Keeping up with the Cavs

As always, you can keep up with the Cavs on Durham Academy’s website and the Durham Academy App (available on the Apple App Store).

  • For a list of all teams, their schedules and directions to games, visit
  • Click on an individual team to subscribe to automatic alerts about athletics results, postponements and cancellations, calendar and athletic event reminders. You can also import team schedules into your electronic calendars.
  • All information about the daily athletics schedule is also available on DA’s Athletics Hotline: 919-489-2534 (ext. 5).

The DA App: Schedules and Results

  • The DA App allows you to keep up with athletics wherever you are. You can download the app from iTunes at The DA App pulls athletics content directly from the DA website and delivers it to iOS-based devices including iPhone and iPad.
  • The Athletics portion of the DA App (after launching, click Menu, then click Athletics to open) features results of recent games, a list of upcoming contests and team records.