PAWTUCKET â€“ There was no hiccups, nor was there any red flags from Matt Albersâ€™ relief appearance with the Pawtucket Red Sox on Sunday afternoon.
A clean and effortless sixth inning was what Albers delivered as the Pawtucket Red Sox cooked up two wins at McCoy Stadium. Daniel Nava capped off the suspended portion of the proceedings with a game-winning single in the 10th inning, lifting the PawSox to a 2-1 win past Buffalo.
Albersâ€™ 1-2-3 frame came in the regularly scheduled contest as Pawtucketâ€™s offense came alive in a 10-6 victory.
PAWTUCKET â€” While this is not a book review of Dan Barryâ€™s â€śBottom of the 33rd,â€ť the goal here is to lend depth behind the 255-page opus currently available.
This is about reenacting the journey Barry took in taking one particular subject and spinning it into a finished product. Reliving the process Barry undertook â€“ from countless interviews to visiting the archives at The Pawtucket Times â€“ is almost as fascinating as the final product itself because of the different angles he explores.
SMITHFIELD â€“ Cumberland High survived injuries to its starting pitcher and catcher on Friday to outlast Smithfield 6-5 in eight innings.
â€śThis was a great team effort,â€ť Cumberland coach Paul Murphy admitted. â€śOur starting pitcher, Hayden Namaka, hurt his hand and left in the third inning. Eric Murray, who had pitched only one inning this season, took over and gave us five good innings. And then our catcher, Matt Billington, got hurt and we replaced him with Matt Bare in the fourth inning.â€ť
SMITHFIELD â€“ Donâ€™t tell Lincoln head coach Ed Hunt that the stolen base isnâ€™t a handy tool.
The Lions qualify as a running bunch, witnessed by the five bags they swiped Thursday in a 9-1 win over Smithfield.
What makes the liberties Lincoln are taking on the base paths even more of a game-changing factor is that a run-producing hit came on the heels on every swiped base except the one Joe Yankee pulled off in the first inning.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Relief pitchers arenâ€™t generally called into the game in the top of the second inning.
But thatâ€™s what Tolman High coach Theo Murray had to do on Thursday afternoon when ace hurler Chris Messier was experiencing soreness in his arm against Division II-Central rival Classical. Murray had to summon junior right-hander Andrew Larson to the mound.
Larson took the ball and then hurled a gem as he held the Purple to three hits the final six innings, lifting the Tigers to a 4-2 victory at Slater Park.
CUMBERLAND --- Through the years, Lincoln vs. Cumberland in softball has featured nothing but tight pitchersâ€™ duels that you can count the total runs (and sometimes the hits) on one hand.
That wasnâ€™t the case on Thursday afternoon.
Allie Dzialoâ€™s bases-clearing double with two outs in the top of the seventh inning keyed a comeback by the Lions that saw them grab an 8-5 win over their Division I-North rivals in a game that saw both teams combine for 23 hits and a truly dramatic finish.
The problem with Red Sox fans is they donâ€™t know how to deal with slow starts. During the Terry Francona Era, their favorite team has never been worse than 28-24 on June 1. That mediocre beginning, which looks downright red-hot compared to this seasonâ€™s 2-9 start, occurred in 2005. Yes, Boston rebounded to make the playoffs that year, bowing to eventual champion Chicago White Sox in the Division Series.
CENTRAL FALLS â€” The Unified Basketball League, the second-year R.I. Interscholastic League program that matches Special Needs athletes with partners from their respective high schools, has not only grown in the amount of teams that participate, but in its competitiveness.
Division I Northern rivals Central Falls and Woonsocket demonstrated that aspect Wednesday afternoon at the Warriorsâ€™ Gymnasium with a thrilling, down-to-the-wire affair.
PAWTUCKET â€” It seems like a lifetime ago, but it was only four seasons ago when St. Raphael Academy was competing for the Division I championship and Tolman High was joining the fastpitch ranks and looking to build a successful Division III program.
Fast forward to 2011. The Tigers are now one of the Division IIâ€™s top teams. After going 50-3 and winning the 2008 state championship in their three years as a Division III squad, the Tigers made a smooth transition to Division II last season by going 13-7.
WOONSOCKET â€” Itâ€™s a little early for Mount St. Charles to start circling the wagons.
The two-time defending Division II champions have played just one game in Division I this season, a 6-5 loss to Smithfield, and this afternoon they host powerful Lincoln High in a 4 p.m. game that could be an eye opener for the Mounties.
Lincoln, which has scored 10 runs in each of its first two league victories (over St. Raphael and Cumberland), is led by Ryan Oâ€™Dell and a strong nucleus of players who should take the Lions deep into the playoffs in early June.