Archive - Sports Article
November 11th, 2012
KINGSTON â€” Ever since East Providence seized its last Division I state championship in 2005, the Townies have had an awfully difficult time climbing back to the top of the volleyball mountain.
In fact, in four of the last seven years since that wonderful unbeaten season, the Townies have appeared in the state finals, only to come up short.
The first two of those four losses were five-set thrillers, and in their last title appearance, against Prout three seasons ago, the Townies played the Crusaders tough, only to lose in three competitive games.
PAWTUCKET â€” As is the standard after a football game, Woonsocket High head coach Carnell Henderson walked to the midfield stripe behind his troops and shook hands with opposing players and coaches alike.
He congratulated all for a job well done, then hugged a few St. Raphael Academy assistants before speaking briefly with long-time Saints' mentor Mike Sassi.
Maybe four milliseconds later, he bolted to his squad and leaped into a few of his heftier players' arms, then â€“ after a few choice words, naturally all positive â€“ he led his kids in a classic Villa Novans' chant.
CUMBERLAND â€“ How do you spell dominance? Try C-U-M-B-E-R-L-A-N-D on for size.
Cumberland kicked off its Division II playoff mission in emphatic fashion Friday evening, the Clippersâ€™ 41-6 conquest of Westerly made possible by the usual cast of stellar performers. Erik Travers rushed for 112 yards and one touchdown while quarterback Brendan Guerin passed for two scores. Not to be outdone, Mitchell Baxter recorded two interceptions while teammates Joe Fine and Dan Stock also found the end zone.
PROVIDENCE â€” Ed Cooley came to Providence College armed with the reputation of being a defensive, get-after-it coach. The five years he spent at Fairfieldâ€™s helm suggested that after a seemingly endless run of witnessing the Friars languish in the bottom tier in Big East team defense, more than lip service would finally be paid to an area that statistically speaking has been a major deficiency.
PROVIDENCE â€” There was a time last spring and summer when Providence Friar fans were salivating at the promise surrounding the 2012-13 season. A highly-touted recruiting class coupled with a group of noteworthy holdovers seemed to signal clearance for takeoff in Ed Cooleyâ€™s second year, giving off an aura that for the first time in a long while, Providence was a program on an up swing.
KINGSTON -- It took Tolman 12 long seasons to get back to URIâ€™s Keaney Gymnasium for a playoff match. It took Cranston West an hour and 45 minutes to end the Tigersâ€™ bid for a berth in this weekendâ€™s Division II finals.
Fueled by a dominant attack at the net, the Falcons earned their first trip to the finals since 2009 by overcoming an opening-set loss to defeat the Tigers, 3-1, and snap their impressive 10-match win streak in Thursday nightâ€™s semifinal-round match.
Dino Campopiano and his Shea High gridders wonâ€™t get another crack at Cumberland or St. Raphael this season.
Conversely, if Brian Coteâ€™s Mount Hope squad were to cross paths with Woonsocket once again, such a matchup wouldnâ€™t take place until the Division II Super Bowl.
JOHNSTON â€” Shea High head coach Chris Daily and assistant Carl McCurdy find it rather strange how their Raiders play so well on the road but are inconsistent at best at their own arena, â€śThe Cage.â€ť
During the course of the Division III regular season, they managed only a 4-4 mark at home, but compiled a 6-2 record in foreign gymnasiums.
KINGSTON â€“ The match was ugly, but to East Providence, the end result was a thing of beauty.
The Townies nailed down their ninth victory in their last 10 matches on Wednesday night in one of their most important matches of the year â€“ their Division I semifinal-round matchup with the Prout School at URIâ€™s Keaney Gymnasium.
In a tightly-contested match that saw neither side bring out its best brand of volleyball, it was the Townies who shook off an opening-set defeat to down the Division I-South champion Crusaders, 3-1, and earn its first berth in the championship match in three years.
PAWTUCKET â€” The defending Governorsâ€™ Cup Champion Pawtucket Red Sox will play their 2013 home-opener at McCoy Stadium on Thursday, April 11 against the Rochester Red Wings at 7:05 p.m.
The PawSox 2013 season will actually start one week earlier on April 4th when they play the inaugural game at the newly-renovated PNC Field in Moosic, PA against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
For the eight football teams that succeeded in qualifying for the Division II postseason, the objective is crystal clear â€“ survive to play the Tuesday following Thanksgiving.
Of the three local participants, only one team is guaranteed a coveted spot in the semifinals. Woonsocket and St. Raphael will lock helmets in a quarterfinal-round clash at Pariseau Field come 6 oâ€™clock Saturday night. Meanwhile, Cumberland rolls out the welcome mat for Westerly, which ventures to Tucker Field Friday.
PROVIDENCE â€“ The idea of framing Saturdayâ€™s first-ever hoops get-together between Providence College and Rhode Island College as merely an exhibition game doesnâ€™t paint a complete picture.
When last we saw Wes Pennington and his North Smithfield football troupe, the Northmen were set to embark upon an unprecedented double bye that would encompass three whole weeks between games.
PAWTUCKET â€” Head coach Pierre Ridore had several reasons to believe his Shea High squad would reign in a R.I. Division I Tournament preliminary tilt against Cumberland on Thursday afternoon.
First, his Raiders had rolled to a 4-1 victory over the Clippers just nine days before this playoff; second, Ridore's bunch entered the contest with a 6-0-1 mark at home â€“ that is, when it played either at Max Read Field or the McKinnon-Alves Complex â€“ and this would be played at the latter.
PAWTUCKET â€” In the end, or more appropriately the final 15 minutes of their R.I. Division III Tournament preliminary-round contest, Tolman High players â€“ those on the bench and, actually, a select few on the field â€“ kept screaming, â€śPass it to Morgan! C'mon, Morgan!â€ť
Those chants were directed at freshman midfielder Morgan Clark, No. 6 on your roster.
LINCOLN â€” Davies Tech head coach Victor Oliveira usually has an inkling as to how his squad will execute prior to a contest. Itâ€™s based on collective attitude, and how theyâ€™re conducting themselves.
On Wednesday afternoon, he had no doubt.
Senior tri-captain Paulo Chavez and classmate Daniel Munoz each netted a pair of goals and junior Mauricio Agudelo chipped in a tally and two assists as the sixth-seeded Patriots walloped No. 11-ranked Johnston High, 7-0, in a R.I. Division III Tournament preliminary tilt.
On the evening of Thursday, Oct. 18, Glenn Ginish, Jr., a performance analyst for a renowned bank in Boston, was taking the â€śTâ€ť home to Jamaica Plains when he figured he'd call his kid sister, Laura, back at her mom's apartment on Mendon Road.
He did so just so the two could catch up with each other's lives.
Itâ€™s less than an hourâ€™s drive to Rhode Island College, the University of Rhode Island, and Roger Williams University, but starting tomorrow and continuing for the next two weeks, several local high school soccer, girlsâ€™ volleyball, and field hockey teams will begin their long roads towards state championship glory.
PAWTUCKET â€“ The past week has featured plenty of heavy lifting at McCoy Stadium. No, this particular exercise has nothing to do with removing the Governorsâ€™ Cup trophy from its on-display perch in the team store and whisking the hardware away to the latest destination on the touring caravan.
BURRILLVILLE â€“ As he stood before a jubilant group of Burrillville players, head coach Gennaro Ferraro raised his right index finger and emphatically pointed in the direction of the Alumni Field scoreboard.
All eyes remained dead set on Ferraro as he rattled off the words the Broncos have longed to hear: â€śItâ€™s a win.â€ť