Archive - 2013 - Sports Article
PAWTUCKET â€” According to skipper Andy Hallam, Lincoln High had spent too much time during the pre-season dwelling on which Division I-North stalwarts it would be playing and when instead of focusing on the task at hand: Winning.
â€śThey got caught up in that,â€ť Hallam stated. â€śEarlier this week, we talked about taking it one game at a time, and not getting too excited about any particular team.â€ť
A little of this, a little of that â€¦
A different type of circus has come to the intersection of George Washington Highway and Old River Road, the characteristics of this particular traveling company unlike the sights and sounds appearing beneath your garden-variety big top.
Sorry to disappoint the youngsters, but you wonâ€™t find any elephants, flying acrobats or lion tamers here.
LINCOLN â€” Lincoln High head coach Mike Ethier and his troops had hoped to derail the express that is Smithfield in a Division III â€śBattle of Unbeatensâ€ť at Tiberii Field on Thursday afternoon.
Despite the fact that the Sentinels had entered the contest as the two-time defending D-III champion and had posted 36 consecutive league wins dating back to 2011, Ethier believed his Lions had the wherewithal to pull off what â€“ at least this season â€“ would be only a mild upset.
CUMBERLAND â€” Thereâ€™s no place like home. And for Cumberland, which played eight of its first nine games of the season (two of them non-league contests in Massachusetts and one an Injury Fund non-leaguer) on the road, Wednesday afternoonâ€™s Division I showdown against La Salle in the friendly confines of Tucker Field was certainly a welcomed breath of fresh air.
LINCOLN â€” Through the earliest section of this season, Lincoln High had serious problems connecting with opposing pitches. Part of that had to do with the foul weather and yet another the absence of sophomore Alyssa Schermerhorn.
Head coach Dick Ryanâ€™s designated hitter, who finished with a .350 average last spring, previously had suffered a broken ankle, and she wasnâ€™t due back until about mid-season.
A portentous email from an accomplished and revered pro football broadcaster was the first blossoming of the good things to come for Bob Socci.
Now that Socci is officially the lead play-by-play radio announcer for the New England Patriots, the veteran sportscaster and current radio voice of the Pawtucket Red Sox can look back with fondness at the message of hope Gil Santos delivered a few years back.
A little of this, a little of that â€¦
David Ortiz is a well-compensated baseball player. Heâ€™s also an adult.
When the time came to address the Fenway Park masses last Saturday, the Red Sox star should have exhibited better judgment. Enough bombs went off in the city of Boston last week. Yet there was Big Papi, dropping an expletive-laced one that ended up casting a pall over a touching pre-game ceremony.
PAWTUCKET â€” Tolman High skipper Theo Murray had just sat at a table under the right-field barbeque tent at McCoy Stadium on Saturday, and â€“ with Tigers' Athletic Director John Scanlon and Pawtucket Red Sox' President Mike Tamburro stationed at both sides â€“ he continued chomping on the food the home team's cooks had prepared.
PAWTUCKET â€” After it ended, Newtown (Conn.) High senior quad-captain Stephen Conway paused for a moment just outside the first-base gate to the barbeque tent near shallow right field and scanned â€“ from a point-blank view â€“ nearly-empty McCoy Stadium.
About 20 minutes prior, the Nighthawks had dropped a 5-3 non-league decision to host Tolman High, but Conway refused to allow the defeat bother him.
PAWTUCKET â€“ The telling numbers from the high-school baseball summit that transformed McCoy Stadium into a special place Saturday werenâ€™t five and three â€“ five being the number of runs Tolman High produced compared to the three scored by the guests of honor â€“ Connecticutâ€™s Newtown High.
PAWTUCKET â€” The Tolman-Newtown high school baseball game thatâ€™s scheduled for Saturday morning (11:30 start) at McCoy Stadium should be embraced as a celebration of the human spirit.
The non-league contest isnâ€™t intended to reopen still-fresh wounds or provide a semblance of closure to the cruel sequence of events that shattered the lives of those affected by the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. This is an event that is woven in companionship while lending support, with the game of baseball serving as the common thread that brings everyone to the same table.
PAWTUCKET â€” The good news coming out of McCoy Stadium on Thursday afternoon was that rehabbing Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, who had struggled at the plate in his first five games with the Pawtucket Red Sox, smacked a home run leading off the sixth inning of the PawSoxâ€™s game against the Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
But aside from that, and a four-run rally in that inning by the PawSox that tied the contest at 5-5, there wasnâ€™t much else to smile about on the homefront.
LINCOLN â€” One by one, Division I squads are coming for Lincoln High, all of them mounting serious challenges.
On Thursday, it was East Providenceâ€™s turn to put Lincoln through its paces. The Townies did not back down in the slightest, moving to within a run after scoring three times against Lions ace pitcher Lindsay Mayer in the sixth inning.
PAWTUCKET â€” At this stage of his rehab assignment, David Ortiz is more concerned about feeling good when he steps out of the batterâ€™s box as opposed to actual results.
The Red Sox star came out of Wednesdayâ€™s contest admitting that his injured heels are doing just fine. He finished hitless in four at-bats as Pawtucket bid adieu to a two-game losing streak with a 6-1 triumph against Lehigh Valley.
PAWTUCKET â€” If first impressions do indeed count, then Mitch Maier put his best foot forward upon formally introducing himself to PawSox manager Gary DiSarcina.
â€śHeâ€™s very driven and focused,â€ť was the takeaway DiSarcina had of Pawtucketâ€™s new outfield addition. â€śI didnâ€™t have to ask him to come into the office and go over the signs. He walked right in that first day.â€ť
PAWTUCKET â€” Minutes after St. Raphael Academy had suffered a 4-2 Division I defeat to previously winless North Providence High at Vets Park early Wednesday afternoon, veteran head coach Tom Sorrentine stood by the first-base line, trying to wrap his thoughts around what had just transpired.
Think of it: Senior southpaw Zach Mitsmenn scattered only six hits and three walks while whiffing a whopping 11, but still took the loss and, incredibly, fell to 1-1.
PAWTUCKET â€” For members of the PawSox family with Massachusetts blood running through their veins, the horrific and tragic events that marred the Boston Marathon hit particularly hard.
â€śItâ€™s a special day for race fans and baseball fans; thereâ€™s a (Boston Bruins) game at night. Itâ€™s a great time for the town,â€ť explained manager Gary DiSarcina, a native of Malden, Mass. and current resident of Plymouth. â€śWhen you least expect it, thatâ€™s when these things happen.â€ť
PAWTUCKET â€” What David Ortiz is attempting to do is adhere to spring-training protocol.
The question is, will the Red Sox slugger be able to get everything ironed out over eight or so at-bats in the coming days with the Pawtucket Red Sox? In 2010, Ortiz received 62 at-bats in spring training and equaled the total the following year. In 2012, he collected 57 Grapefruit League at-bats.
WOONSOCKET â€” In an impressive 26-game win streak that dates back to its season opener a year ago, Lincoln has experienced only a handful of close games that not only tested the teamâ€™s mettle, but also presented some anxious moments for its players, coaches, and fans.
But while most of those tight contests were decided by three or more runs, only one was a one-run nailbiter â€” Tuesday afternoonâ€™s chilly Division I affair against host and longtime foe Mount St. Charles.
PAWTUCKET â€“ The Pawtucket Red Sox, already off to its finest start to a season in club history, seemed poised to move to 10-1 after holding a 3-1 cushion through seven innings on Monday night.
But righty reliever Chris Carpenter surrendered the Lehigh Valley IronPigs five runs in the top of the eighth, and the PawSox ultimately suffered an 8-3 International League-North beatdown before 3,849 fans at McCoy Stadium.