Archive - Sports Article
âWinning isnât everything âŠ itâs the only thing.â
Most people attribute this quote to legendary Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi. Actually, Vince borrowed it from a former UCLA football coach named Red Sanders. Its true meaning is hard to miss. Winning is the only thing that matters.
NORTH SMITHFIELD âKent Crooks realizes that this yearâs squad doesnât really have a superstar or a good-to guy.
What the Lincoln High coach does know is that he has multiple players that can get the job done.
And that was clearly on display during Friday nightâs non-league Injury Fund contest versus North Smithfield.
Three players scored in double digits and half a dozen netted at least six points as the Lions breezed to a 76-38 win over a somewhat-shorthanded Northmen squad at the Lovett Gymnasium. Lincoln was led by a team-high 16 points from Mike Akanji.
TE -- Chris Baldwin, sophomore
LT -- Dion Rubio, junior
LG -- Zach Delmar, junior
C -- Devan Bullard, senior
RG -- Daniel Stubbs, freshman
RT -- Jared Battersby, senior
WR -- Shayne Taylor, senior
QB -- Joselito Knapp, junior
HB -- Ousmane Samb, senior
HB -- Elvis George, sophmore
HB -- Juan Wilson, senior
E -- Rodney Jean-Pierre, junior
T -- Jared Battersby, senior
T -- Aaron Stone, senior
E -- Seny Samb, junior
LB -- Joselito Knapp, junior
LB -- Mamour Samb, sophomore
LB -- Dion Rubio, junior
LB -- Andre Gilbert, junior
When push comes to shove during Sundayâs Division II Super Bowl between Woonsocket and Tolman, expect both coaching staffs to put the game in the hands of their defensive units.
Each of these championship football teams depended on their defenses in tough games, perhaps never more so than during their Sept. 24 regular season meeting when the Tigers ground out a 6-0 victory over the Villa Novans.
By the end of the league season, Woonsocket had allowed just 20 points in 7 games. Tolman yielded 28.
It always used to be easy to have a finger on the pulse of fans and alumni associated with the Providence College-University of Rhode Island basketball rivalry.
It appears the Red Sox are leaving no stone unturned as the search for the next PawSox manager remains ongoing. The position has been vacant for nearly a month, yet the organization remains mum on whom Torey Lovulloâs successor will be.
As BoSox farm director Mike Hazen explained Thursday, finding the next Pawtucket manager is a decision best not entered into lightly and one that requires a great deal of homework.
When the Rhode Island Interscholastic League decided to dissolve the seven-team Division I-A circuit in boysâ hockey during the offseason, that left Lincoln High with an interesting dilemma.
Do the Lions, who were 13-4-1 and state finalists a season ago, drop down to Division II and become the clear-cut favorites to win that championship? Or do the Lions take a bold step up the ladder and compete with the stateâs premier teams in Division I?
When Central Falls boards its bus for tonightâs Injury Fund opener in Newport against Rogers, the Warriors will do so without someone who had been with them for the past two decades.
Joe Handy, who served the last 10 seasons as the Warriorsâ head coach and the 10 before that as an assistant, has not returned to the helm this season.
It wasnât because Handy didnât want to coach anymore, nor was it because of any outside commitments with his family or his occupation.
PROVIDENCE â Marshon Brooks has never been accused of being shy with the basketball. Yet in order for him to complete player in the eyes of Keno Davis, the Providence College senior had to show a serious commitment to rebounding the basketball.
Brooks delivered another banner night scoring-wise, notching a season-best 27 points as PC held off visiting Northeastern, 77-72, Wednesday night before yet another sparse gathering of 4,828 at The Dunk. Just as important were the eight rebounds Brooks snatched, as he came close to matching his season average (8.7).
Sundayâs Division II Super Bowl game between unbeaten (in league play) Tolman and defending champion Woonsocket needs no hype from the media. These two teams stand on their own merits.
PAWTUCKET â In the end, Tuesday night's Division II semifinal playoff game between Tolman and St. Raphael Academy came down to a few gridiron standbys â halftime adjustments, plays that just missed connecting, and which team wanted it more.
Tolman made the necessary adjustments, St. Raphael dropped a crucial touchdown pass, and the top-seeded Tigers, who trailed 12-7 at halftime, reached deep down within themselves to outlast a courageous Saints team, 25-12, before an estimated crowd of 1,200 fans at Max Read Field.
PROVIDENCE â During the league season last month, Lincoln High had its way with Moses Brown and handed its Division III foe its first loss of the fall.
Letâs just say the Quakers took that defeat personal.
In the more-important rematch between the two squads â a semifinal tilt on Tuesday night â Moses Brown returned the favor with a convincing 21-0 blanking of the Lions at Brown Universityâs Berylson Field.
Gearing up for Tuesdayâs push to the Super Bowl âŠ
Making fundamental changes to a football teamâs strategy this late in the season is a radical move. Tweaking is the preferred action of coaches, applying a new wrinkle or two depending on the next opponent. Generally what has worked up until this point is going to continue â unless something unforeseen happens.
At this time of the year, many college and high school football teams compete against traditional Thanksgiving opponents. We call them rivalry games, contests that are played for âbragging rightsâ and even, in rare cases, for league championships.
The advent of playoffs has diminished these games over the years. In college ball, radical reformers want to take it one step farther, creating a national championship for Division I teams that would completely dilute the meaning of bowl games while also extending the season deep into January or even into the first weekend of February.
EAST PROVIDENCE â Itâs hard to boil down four quarters of action into two calls that werenât on the side of Sandy Gorham and his East Providence Townies. Listen to Gorham, however, and it became clear that the two judgment calls by the officiating crew played a big part in La Salle Academy waltzing out of Pierce Stadium with a 14-6 win on Thursday morning before an estimated crowd of 3,000.
PAWTUCKET â There was no quit in Freddy Gobewole.
On a night in which his heart was his biggest ally, Gobewole willed his way to a 16-yard score with 46.7 seconds remaining. That snapped a 7-7 game and gave Shea an eventual 14-7 triumph over semifinal-bound Tolman Wednesday night at student-dominated crowd at Max Read Field. The Raiders lead the holiday series by a 5-4 count.
PAWTUCKET -- This wasnât a three-hour barnburner, nor was it as high-scoring as their memorable Division II quarterfinal-round playoff game that transpired 11 days ago.
Instead, the inaugural Thanksgiving Eve showdown between St. Raphael Academy and Johnston High turned into a letdown by the Saints, who turned in a lackluster showing in a 30-6 loss to the Panthers at McCoy Stadium.
EAST PROVIDENCE â Sandy Gorham has the sentiment of the holiday season down pat â from a football perspective, of course. The veteran East Providence High head coach is thankful that his Townies donât have the playoffs-at-stake drama thatâs hovering over La Salle Academy heading into Thursdayâs renewal of the longest running holiday sports rivalry between any two Rhode Island high schools.
Thereâs no need to panic over the Red Sox losing Victor Martinez to Detroit in a free agent signing on Tuesday. The Red Sox will find a catcher somewhere. It would be better if they could develop one through their farm system but their best prospect is at least two years away from competing for a big league job.
PAWTUCKET -â Itâs just a natural fit, having Tolman and Shea as Thanksgiving rivals. The holiday series may still be in its early stages â Wednesday night at Max Read Field marks the ninth installment, with each side winning four â but the way the two sides appreciate what the game truly means, itâs as if the Tigers and Raiders have been doing this for many moons.
For that, the credit belongs to the two men responsible for shepherding the programs: Tolmanâs Dave Caito and Dino Campopiano of Shea.