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January 24th, 2014

Boles, Crabbe get warm welcomes at PawSox Hot Stove event

January 25, 2014

PAWTUCKET – Bruce Crabbe’s official title with the Pawtucket Red Sox is coach. It sounds simple and straightforward, yet also vague in terms of what exactly his duties with the Triple-A ballclub will entail.

The 51-year-old Crabbe could oversee the infielders, an area that is his forte. Perhaps he might be responsible for relaying signals from the dugout to the outfielders, reminding them where to position themselves based on the hitter at the plate. Maybe Crabbe will offer his in-game observations as he sits next to new PawSox manager Kevin Boles.

January 23rd

Fernandes' late free throw lifts Tolman boys to thrilling victory over Exeter/West Greenwich

January 24, 2014

Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET — Tolman’s Jesse Fernandes went to the free throw line with two seconds left in Thursday night’s Division II-Central game with Exeter/West Greenwich. The scoreboard showed a 67-67 deadlock. Tolman students rattled the bleachers with their feet in anticipation of the upcoming free throws.
“I’m a 70 percent free throw shooter,” the junior said a few minutes after he made the second of two freebies for an exciting and hard-fought 68-67 victory over the Avengers. “I’m glad I had two free throws. I missed the first one but the second one was pretty good.”

Raiders’ struggles continue: First-place Wizards notch Division II-Central basketball victory

January 24, 2014

PAWTUCKET — Shea High got up close with one of the leading contenders in Division II this season, and the results were not pretty for the locals.
The visitors from West Warwick felt quite at home at “The Cage” Thursday night, rolling to an 80-44 victory. The II-Central leading Wizards improve to 6-0 while the Raiders have now dropped four straight league contests since beating Exeter/West Greenwich back on Dec. 20.

January 22nd

Cumberland's Bauer hopes improvement in pool leads to success down the road

January 23, 2014

CUMBERLAND — Throughout the 2012-13 winter campaign, then-Cumberland High sophomore Jack Bauer improved at a rapid rate, causing older brother Andrew to continue to hassle him about registering for a USA Swimming-affiliated club program.
Andrew, a phenomenal distance freestyler in his own right, had done the same, and he reasoned that Jack would only get faster, given the more grueling workouts.

St. Raphael/PCD/Wheeler co-op hockey team savors five-game win streak, benefits from improved play

January 23, 2014

PAWTUCKET — As a father watching his son represent the St. Raphael/Providence Country Day/Wheeler co-op squad last winter, Gary Leonard noticed it often didn't play as a team, a fluid unit. To him, it looked as if the players seemed more concerned with individual stats and/or glory.
“I thought the biggest issue with them was selfish team play,” he stated Tuesday afternoon. “When I became the head coach back in September, it was my goal to eliminate the selfishness and try to build a program based on team success.”

January 21st

No longer bound by drama, Friars trending upward

January 21, 2014

PROVIDENCE – There are two schools of thought as to why Ted Bancroft and the Friars have gone on to string three Big East wins together following an 0-2 start.

Representing the Providence program at Monday’s college basketball brunch, held at Warwick's Radisson Hotel, Bancroft mentioned that a players-only meeting was staged in the aftermath of a 30-point blowout loss at Villanova earlier this month. At the time, the Friars appeared in a free fall after losing back-to-back overtime contests to UMass and Seton Hall before getting drubbed by the Wildcats.

January 19th

Thumb surgery behind him, Alex Wilson sets sights on regaining role in Boston's bullpen

January 20, 2014

PAWTUCKET – Eventually, Alex Wilson arrived at the understanding that his ability to properly grip a baseball had been compromised.

What was originally deemed a sprained right thumb last July evolved into something far more problematic to the point where surgery went from a potential last resort to being inevitable. Wilson admitted that everything “was tried under the sun.” From having the thumb placed in a cast and later a splint, all of the precautions taken were done with an eye toward eventually returning to Boston’s bullpen.

January 17th

Warriors slay Tigers, 42-27

January 18, 2014

CENTRAL FALLS – Head coach Jayar Santos gave Central Falls High senior Yesenia Biascochea the news prior to the start of their campaign.
Because he didn’t have a true point guard, she’d have to assume that role, not the one in which she had been accustomed – the shooting guard spot.

He also issued her a proviso; that is, if she had the open shot, then go ahead and put it up.

January 15th

Cotton far from the only option in Friars' arsenal

January 16, 2014

PROVIDENCE – It’s starting to happen. Bryce Cotton is staring at the probability of roughly two months remaining in his Providence College basketball career.

As time becomes the senior’s enemy, so too does the sense that the adjectives specifically reserved to describe Cotton’s on-court playmaking abilities are seemingly stuck on repeat. Long ago, games of 20 or more points went from the exception to the rule for Cotton. When a player crosses over such a rarified threshold, in turn it becomes easy for fans to fall into a state of complacency.

January 14th

Gonzalez sisters make Saintly duo for SRA

January 15, 2014

PAWTUCKET – St. Raphael Academy coach Fred Saunders calls them the “brains and heart of our team.”

They are the Gonzalez sisters – point guard Danyele and forward Rybecca. Danyele runs the show and Rybecca handles the scoring load. Along with fellow starters Seun Shittu, Felicia Baccari and Kaylee Oliver, they have turned St. Raphael Academy into an unbeaten Division II-Central squad that hopes to go deep into the playoffs this winter.

January 13th

Lincoln girls' swim team dunks Westerly, now 4-0

January 14, 2014

LINCOLN — Though a year had passed, Lincoln High sophomore Mollie Westrick and junior Nicole Moneghan hadn’t forgotten how the Westerly aquawomen had sailed to a Division II dual-meet victory.
In fact, the Bulldogs had pulled off wins in each of the previous three winter seasons, and the Lions desperately wanted to “turn the tide,” so to speak.

January 12th

Skurka exits as Cumberland head football coach, accepts role as assistant at Dean College

January 12, 2014

CUMBERLAND — When it came time for Chris Skurka to make the biggest football decision of his life, he turned to a voice of reassurance and clarity.

Alison Skurka, the coach’s wife, had a quick answer. A staunch supporter of her husband’s pigskin endeavors, Alison gave Chris her blessing to make the jump from head coach at Cumberland High to becoming an assistant at Dean College.

“She’s allowed me to chase that dream,” said Chris Skurka. “Ultimately, it came down to me making a decision about my family and my career as a coach.”

Cumberland wins close battle for team championship at John D. Gorman Memorial Wrestling Tournament

January 12, 2014

CUMBERLAND — Senior standouts Cody Beaudette and Chris Hayes captured their weight classes to help Cumberland win a close battle for the team championship in this past weekend’s John D. Gorman Memorial Tournament at the Clippers’ Wellness Center.
The Clippers, who returned to the top of the team standings after watching Johnston finish first last year, scored 159.5 points to beat 17 other teams (representing four New England states) and nip runner-up Bristol Eastern of Connecticut by 1.5 points.

January 10th

Desire, defense key to Davies 3-1 start

January 11, 2014

LINCOLN – It’s true: Over the last eight years, Davies Tech compiled a dismal overall league record of 10 wins and 120 losses.
That’s a winning percentage of .077. If you follow baseball, think of that as a batting average.

But none of that has bothered second-year head coach Bill Meekins, who truly believes his Patriots are on the upswing. He had proof on Thursday night after his club shelled Ponaganset, 63-47, in a Division III-North clash at Gaskin Alumni Hall.

January 9th

Community, hockey teams gather at fundraiser for Lincoln sophomore with non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

January 10, 2014

LINCOLN — The high school hockey rivalry between Lincoln and Cumberland is beyond intense. Granted, they may compete on the second tier below those battles between perennial state powers Mount St. Charles-Hendricken and/or La Salle, but it doesn't mean the Lions or Clippers care any less about not just defeating but crushing the other.
After all, town bragging rights are at stake. Geez, it runs the gamut from football to basketball, baseball to track, even swimming and lacrosse.

Lions look to continue wrestling success this year

January 10, 2014

LINCOLN — When Mike Tuorto took over as the Lincoln High wrestling coach five years ago, his primary goal was to change the philosophy surrounding the program – that is, from one where mere participation was accepted to one where coaches and athletes alike craved wins, not to mention championships.
He claimed he began to see the varsity team take strides in becoming more competitive his first two seasons, but since has witnessed a renaissance of sorts.

January 8th

PC's Cooley: 'Our program will flourish'

January 9, 2014

PROVIDENCE – After watching his team dismantle Georgetown for its Big East win the season, PC head coach Ed Cooley touched upon the ominous cloud that has hovered over his program in recent weeks.

From a three-game losing streak that included a pair of stinging overtime defeats and a 30-point blowout against Villanova, to Brandon Austin’s decision to leave without playing a single regular-season minute, to a fire at Cooley’s East Greenwich home that forced his family to evacuate, the head coach saw an opening to address all concerns following the Friars’ 70-52 bludgeoning of the Hoyas.

Tolman boys thump Shea in Donaldson showdown

January 9, 2014

Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET — Tolman High coach Mike Kayata has been juggling a bunch of individual talents over the first month of the season while looking for the one piece that will turn his team into a cohesive machine on offense.
“I’ve been looking for a point guard,” the coach said after the Tigers rolled to a 70-56 victory over Shea High in the annual James W. Donaldson Memorial Scholarship game before a full house of vocal fans from both schools.
Examining the stat sheet and learning that newcomer Prince Johnson Jr. collected 10 assists on the night, Kayata smiled.

January 6th

McGair: Fallout from PC’s decision to suspend freshmen can’t sit well with Cooley

January 7, 2014

It’s time for Providence College basketball fans to put everything in proper perspective.

They’re an upset group due to the administration imposing a season-long suspension from game competition on two freshmen. They feel the sentence is a tad on the harsh side, especially in the wake of no reported legal wrongdoings.

January 3rd

New realignment in football means Cumberland heads to Div. I ranks; Tolman returns to Div. II

January 4, 2014

Success can come at a hefty price. In the Rhode Island Interscholastic League, this double-edged sword is sharpened every few years or so when the time comes to realign the divisions.

Caught in the crosshairs are non-Division I teams that have achieved and sustained success over a designated period of time. Add a dash of enrollment and presto, what appears is a surefire recipe for relocation to a higher division.

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