Archive - Sports Article
October 30th, 2013
BOSTON â In the eyes of Frank Thomas, David Ortiz didnât become the top designated hitter on the planet purely by accident.
âTo have success at that position, youâve got to work on a lot of things during the game that people donât see,â explained Thomas while watching the Red Sox take batting practice prior to Game 6 of the World Series. âYouâve got to stay mentally focused and youâve got to stay loose to get up there and jump into a ballgame like youâre 100 percent ready to go.â
EAST GREENWICH â When one of her players asked Cumberland High head coach Stefanie Capone-Bello how her baby was surviving the early moments of a battle between the Clippers and Smithfield on Wednesday night, the elder replied, âPretty good, I think.â
Immediately after the second-ranked Sentinels had roared to an incredible 3-2 victory in this R.I. Division II Tournament semifinal at Nick Carcieri Field, Capone-Bello kept the same sense of humor, though looked sad doing so.
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CENTRAL FALLS â The Tolman-Central Falls playoff game appeared headed to a shootout for the longest time on Tuesday night. The favored Warriors were having a hard time scoring against Tolman keeper Adam Ghazal, arguably the best goalie in the state.
For years, the names rolled off your tongue so effortlessly that it felt like you were on a first-name basis with them. Everything felt so warm and reassuring when discussing certain Big East coaches that mentioning them in the same breath as death and taxes was perfectly acceptable.
Nothing is certain but death and taxes â along with Jim Boeheim coaching at Syracuse. Ditto Jim Calhoun at Connecticut, Rick Pitino at Louisville and Mike Brey at Notre Dame.
PROVIDENCE â On a campus where the menâs basketball program serves as a valuable gateway for public attention, nights like the one that took place at Providence College Friday are held in high esteem, not only by students, but the community at large.
With much fanfare, head coach Ed Cooley, his assistants and players rolled out the Black & White carpet for âLate Night Madnessâ festivities at Alumni Hall.
PAWTUCKET -- In an evenly-matched game that stood tied at 13 late in the third quarter, St. Raphael Academyâs speedy James Kelly made the decisive play of the night, an 80-yard touchdown run through the middle of Sheaâs defense that sparked the Saints to a crucial 21-13 triumph over the Raiders.
In terms of playoff ramifications, the significance of Fridayâs 7 p.m. Division II-B contest pitting St. Raphael at Shea cannot be underscored.
The stakes are pretty high when you consider the 2-2 Saints and the 2-2 Raiders presently share the subdivisionâs fourth and final playoff spot. Sprinkle in a West Warwick squad thatâs also two up and two down in league play and it makes perfect sense to label tonightâs Pawtucket-centric matchup as one of critical significance.
LINCOLN â Head coach Brenda Sylvester really couldn't recall what she told her Lincoln High troops prior to facing Bay View in both teams' Division I-North season finale on Thursday afternoon.
âI guess I just told them to go out and play as well as they know they can,â stated Sylvester, who attended the contest despite being on maternity leave, giving assistant Lea Miguel the opportunity to serve as interim chief. âI just said, 'Go out and play your game.'â
BOSTON â For much of his tenure with the Red Sox, Dustin Pedroia has been a mainstay at the No. 2 spot in the batting order.
What used to serve as a foregone conclusion for Boston received a noticeable jolt this season. On Opening Day at Yankee Stadium, Pedroia found himself hitting in front of cleanup âbangerâ David Ortiz while newcomer Shane Victorino assumed the spot in the lineup that used to have the second basemanâs name written all over it.
LINCOLN â As a former high school and college athlete, Mike Bedrossian knows what it takes to prepare for games, especially those critical to his teams' success.
He did time and again at Seekonk High, as well as the Community College of Rhode Island and Rhode Island College, where he starred in basketball and baseball.
This is one of those times when getting it straight from the horseâs mouth just seems right. In Dodgers first base coach Davey Lopes, you have someone who meets the criteria of gleaning insight into what exactly makes the Red Sox and Cardinals tick.
Lopesâ credentials are unparalleled when it comes to weighing in/opining on the two World Series combatants. The East Providence native and La Salle Academy alumnus was part of a Los Angeles organization that recently got pushed aside by St. Louis in the National League Championship Series.
LINCOLN â If you missed the first 30 seconds of Tuesday nightâs Division II girlsâ soccer clash between Lincoln and Warwick Vets, you missed a lot.
Electing to establish tempo on the gameâs initial touch, the Lions quickly penetrated deep into the Hurricanesâ zone before one of their scoring stars took over. Senior Hailee Jarry succeeded in turning the corner and getting past a Warwick Vets defender before rifling a shot from the top of the 18-yard box that goalie Katelen Pick had little chance of stopping.
NORTH PROVIDENCE â Throughout practice sessions last week, North Providence High head coach Glenn Williams quietly worried about how facing a Division II-B squad such as Shea could hurt it.
Not emotionally, of course, but physically. After all, the competition â not to mention the overall size, strength and speed of a D-II club â is better two leagues up, as many coaches out there would heartily agree.
âWe came into this with the attitude 'Let's get through this without any injuries, and let's learn something from it,'â stated Williams, also the school's athletic director.
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CENTRAL FALLS â Defense ruled the night as Hope High held on for a 14-6 victory over Central Falls on Friday evening at the Higginson Avenue gridiron.
The visitors led 8-0 at halftime, only to see Central Falls climb to within two points when Carlos Hernandez picked up a botched snap from center by Hope on an attempted punt and returned the ball 45 yards for a touchdown.
It was the only time Central Falls would score all night.
WOONSOCKET â Minutes following Mount St. Charlesâ 1-0 loss to fellow Division II stalwart Lincoln High on Friday afternoon, head coach Paul Jacques worried not so much about the verdict but the health of junior keeper Ben Weiss.
With 17:30 remaining in the opening half, Lionsâ senior tri-captain Alex DâAloisio fired a pass from the deep left corner toward Weiss as he guarded the net. The liner got through the defense, and Weiss deflected the ball away, but went down in a heap.
Itâs hard to believe, but the midway point of the high school season is this weekend.
And in this state, the third weekend of October usually means two things -- a heavy dose of non-league games for Division II teams, and some interesting matchups in the other three divisions.
Two teams holding onto their playoff hopes are included in these divisional matchups, North Smithfield and Central Falls, and there will be plenty of interest in their respective âmust-winâ contests.
CUMBERLAND â Visiting Tiverton tried to pull off a magical comeback and an upset victory over Cumberland on Wednesday night at the Clippersâ Wellness Center, but the Clippers were able to win a 3-2 thriller that raised their Division II-North record to 12-2.
The Clippers cruised to 25-9 and 25-15 victories in the first two games, but the Tigers (6-8) came back to win the next two games, 25-20 and 25-16, and take the Clippers the distance in the fifth set before falling 16-14.
PROVIDENCE â Right from the onset, Bob Driscoll expressed a strong desire to inject new life into the athletic facilities utilized by Providence College coaches and student-athletes.
âI remember speaking with a reporter in one of my first interviews for an article about what was possible,â said Driscoll, now less than a month away from the 12th anniversary of his hiring date as the schoolâs athletic director. âIâm a pretty big dreamer, but even for my dreams, itâs exceeded that.â
LINCOLN â First the simple facts:
So far this season, the Lincoln High girls' soccer squad has racked up a stellar 8-0-2 record (9-0-2 overall) against its Division II counterparts, and remains the only unbeaten team in that league, even though Burrillville â with its 9-2-0 mark â sits atop D-II with 27 points.
Still, the Lions (as of Monday) have played one less tilt and are a mere point back in second.
CENTRAL FALLS -- Despite all the things that went wrong for Central Falls on Friday night â from its high number of penalties to its turnovers and poor tackling â the Warriors still had their share of opportunities to defeat a vastly-improved Scituate team.
And while the Spartans endured their share of struggles as well, they were able to pull out of Perez Field with a 20-18 victory and raise their young Division IV record to 2-0.