Chris Alicea is a bright spot for Lower Cape May Regional.
The 6-foot, 170-pound junior wide receiver and defensive back has caught eight passes for 132 yards and one touchdown. Alicea also has sparked the defense with an interception and a fumble recovery.
Lower (0-4) has lost 24 straight games but has been competitive the past few weeks, having lost to Bridgeton 7-6 two weeks ago and Vineland 35-13 last Friday. Lower did have to forfeit a Sept. 25 game against St. Augustine Prep because it did not have enough players due to injuries.
The Caper Tigers host Allentown (2-2) of Monmouth County on Saturday at 2 p.m.
How have you and your teammates persevered through the program's struggles?
I love the game of football. That's a boost in keeping me out there. We play for each other. We're improving. At the beginning of the season, people were new to their positions. Now everybody is learning the offense and defense.
How difficult was it to forfeit the St. Augustine game?
That was tough. That was an aggressive week of practice. Nobody wanted to do it. But we were really low on numbers.
What's been your biggest thrill on the field so far?
I'm going to say it happened against Bridgeton when I picked up a fumble at (Lower's) 3-yard line. I returned it about 40 yards. It was something we needed.
What do you think of the success you've had this season and the attention you're drawing from opposing defenses?
I feel like it's a football team. There's 11 people on the field. If they want to guard me, somebody else is going to be open.
What have you learned from playing football for Lower?
I've learned that true friends are always going to be there for you. Our team, our coaches, the people we surround ourselves with - those are the people that are going to be there for you.