PAWTUCKET â€“ Point, meet counterpoint.
In keeping with the spirit of an article that ran in this newspaper on Dec. 14 â€“â€śCould Donaldson, Lynch tourneys be merged?â€ť â€“ Tolman High athletic director John Scanlon earlier this week unveiled a detailed plan of a Blackstone Valley-themed preseason boysâ€™ basketball tournament. The names â€“ the James W. Donaldson Memorial Tournament and the Dennis M. Lynch Tournament â€“ would still be kept, albeit with several interesting caveats.
PAWTUCKET â€” â€śWhat doesnâ€™t kill you makes you stronger.â€ť
St. Raphael Academy is bent on turning one of Nietzscheâ€™s most memorable quotes into a rallying cry, head coach Fred Saunders hopeful that it pays off in the form of a playoff berth. That figures to be a tall order considering the Saints no longer have leading scorer Diandra DaRosa in the fold, but as Saunders noted after a gutsy 38-34 win over a green Ponaganset squad Wednesday night, the show must still go on for St. Raphael.
WARWICK â€” Cumberland and Hendricken looked like they were in a hurry to get home and study when they met in a battle of unbeaten Division I powers on Wednesday night.
In a dual-meet that barely lasted 40 minutes, Cumberland rode eight pins and a major decision victory to a 52-30 victory over the Hawks.
Cumberland and Warwick Veterans are now the lone remaining unbeaten squads in Division I. The Clippers will host the Hurricanes next Wednesday night in a meet that should decide the dual-meet champion.
WOONSOCKET â€“ In her freshman year of high school swimming last winter for Cumberland High, all Courtney Kent did was win a state title. Kent shocked the field by capturing the 500-yard freestyle with an impressive time of 5 minutes, 6.45 seconds at the Tootel Aquatic Center at URI.
What does the tenth-grader expect to do for the encore?
How about cop two individual titles at the Feb. 19 state championship and possibly break a state record by a certain U.S. Olympian, who makes Rhode Island her home.
Some things I think I think:
It was nice to see North Smithfieldâ€™s Corinne Coia gain some local recognition for her productive basketball career at Lincoln School. The 6-foot-4 senior, who has signed a letter of intent to play for the University of Rhode Island, scored 25 points on Monday night and now has 1,019 points in her career. She passed 1,000 career rebounds earlier this season.
Some high school hoop-related tidbits to pass along â€¦
You could say the three divisional tournaments in boysâ€™ basketball are suffering from the same symptoms normally associated with middle child syndrome. Blame such thinking on our minds being somewhere else, the focus instead on the chaos and suspense hovering over the squeeze-everything-in gauntlet needed to complete the regular season. Thereâ€™s also a great deal of buzz in the air surrounding the open state tournament, the new frontier that will lead to the crowning of one champion.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Austin Silva scored two baskets in the closing 20 seconds as Shea High rallied for a dramatic 51-50 victory over Lincoln on Friday night.
â€śWe were down three points with 20 seconds left,â€ť Shea coach Matt Pita said. â€śAustin hit a two-point basket and we put a full-court press on. Lincoln turned the ball over with 13 seconds left. With 1.1 seconds left, Austin drove the lane and hit a layup for the winning basket.â€ť
Silva finished the game with 21 points. Guard Malik Moody added 14 for the Raiders, who are now 10-5 in Division II action.
NORTH PROVIDENCE â€“ Avalanches are known for their fast-moving nature. They are also quite destructive, which Tolman High can attest to.
The rumbles of eventual ruin transpired in the opening five minutes of the second half, host North Providence High going on a game-changing run that made all the good work Tolman had put forth in the opening half a distant memory. By the time the last bit of debris fell onto the hardwood on Friday night, the Tigers found themselves tunneling out from an 80-66 defeat.
CRANSTON â€” Two of the four heavyweight programs in Division I squared off on Thursday night. Cumberland and Cranston West threw haymakers at each other all night with the defending state champion Clippers getting off the deck to win a 36-28 slugfest.
Cumberland scored five pins, worth six points each in the team scoring, to a pair of deck jobs for the Falcons. Those pins, especially the ones scored by Brandon Ferreri and Tom Lacroix after Cranston West had taken a 25-21 lead after 160 pounds, proved the difference in this topsy-turvy match.