Archive - Sports Article
October 24th, 2013
In terms of playoff ramifications, the significance of Fridayâ€™s 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 subdivisionâ€™s fourth and final playoff spot. Sprinkle in a West Warwick squad thatâ€™s also two up and two down in league play and it makes perfect sense to label tonightâ€™s 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.
â€śI guess I just told them to go out and play as well as they know they can,â€ť stated Sylvester, who attended the contest despite being on maternity leave, giving assistant Lea Miguel the opportunity to serve as interim chief. â€śI just said, 'Go out and play your game.'â€ť
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 â€śbangerâ€ť David Ortiz while newcomer Shane Victorino assumed the spot in the lineup that used to have the second basemanâ€™s 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 horseâ€™s 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 nightâ€™s Division II girlsâ€™ soccer clash between Lincoln and Warwick Vets, you missed a lot.
Electing to establish tempo on the gameâ€™s 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.
â€śWe came into this with the attitude 'Let's get through this without any injuries, and let's learn something from it,'â€ť stated Williams, also the school's athletic director.
Sports editor emeritus
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 Dâ€™Aloisio 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.
Itâ€™s 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 â€śmust-winâ€ť 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.
â€śI remember speaking with a reporter in one of my first interviews for an article about what was possible,â€ť said Driscoll, now less than a month away from the 12th anniversary of his hiring date as the schoolâ€™s athletic director. â€śIâ€™m a pretty big dreamer, but even for my dreams, itâ€™s exceeded that.â€ť
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.
PROVIDENCE â€“ St. Raphael Academy had trouble protecting leads and finishing games in its two league losses this season.
On Friday night at City Stadium, the Saints corrected those problems, grabbing a 6-0 lead in the first quarter and rolling to a 33-0 victory over Central that evened SRAâ€™s Division II-B record at 2-2.
In analyzing this weekâ€™s slate of high school football games, we thought it would be appropriate to categorize them via the following tiers:
-- Let the good times continue to roll.
-- Time to circle the wagons and bounce back.
-- Borrowing from The Doors, itâ€™s time to break on through.
Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET â€“ Tolman High enhanced its playoff hopes on Wednesday with a solid 2-0 upset victory over Hope High on Wednesday evening at McKinnon-Alves Field.
Ibrahima Male and Sebastian Estrada netted first-half goals for the Tigers and goalie Adam Ghazal took care of the rest, making 16 saves, several of the spectacular variety, to keep Hope (now 5-3-1) off the scoreboard.
â€śAdam is the best goalie Iâ€™ve seen so far this season,â€ť Tolman coach Jack Couto admitted after the match ended. â€śIf not for Adam, Hope probably would have had four goals.â€ť
SMITHFIELD â€“ More than anything, Cumberland High sophomore Amy Laverty wanted to team with her harrier friends and upset fellow powerhouse Smithfield to claim a most elusive Northern Division championship.
The Sentinels, however, provided too much depth in this â€śBattle of Unbeatens,â€ť and closed the season with a perfect 11-0 mark after edging the gutsy Clippers, 24-34, at Deerfield Park on Tuesday afternoon.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Thereâ€™s cause for optimism regarding the boysâ€™ and girlsâ€™ cross-country programs at Tolman High.
With both squads fielding extremely young squads this fall, meets like the one on Monday afternoon at Slater Park will serve as stepping stones for future seasons. The Tolman boys posted a 22-32 victory over Moses Brown, though dropped a 22-33 decision to East Providence.
Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET â€“ â€śThis is one of those games you guys will remember for the rest of your lives,â€ť Cumberland High coach Chris Skurka told his players after they rallied for a stunning 24-17 victory over St. Raphael Academy on Saturday night before approximately 400 fans at Max Read Field.