PAWTUCKET â€“ West Warwick almost pulled off the upset heard around Division III on Tuesday night, taking a 2-1 lead into the final two minutes of the second overtime before St. Raphael Academyâ€™s Kytresa Ivey-Jones scored the goal of her young life, tying the contest and sending it into a shootout that the Saints won, 4-2, on a clinching goal by freshman Trina Lomba.
LINCOLN â€“ You could say the elements helped even the playing field between Lincoln and North Smithfield. With a steady rain sweeping across Chet Nichols Field, Tuesdayâ€™s Division II quarterfinal match became a matter of survival.
Thanks to two goals in the final nine minutes, the Lions emerged from this mud bath with a 2-0 victory over the Northmen, who played the game minus the services of head coach Steve DeMeo. DeMeo was relived of his coaching duties after Mondayâ€™s arrest for allegedly transmitting inappropriate messages to a minor.
Boston Red Sox director of player development Mike Hazen confirmed Tuesday that the process to find Pawtucketâ€™s next manager is already under way. The vacancy was created when Torey Lovullo left to become Torontoâ€™s first base coach on Monday.
â€śWeâ€™ve already started to put together a list,â€ť Hazen said via cell phone. â€śCertainly within the list you have to stay somewhat flexible because of (potential coaching shifts at the major league level). As a result more candidates could become available as those situations play out.â€ť
PAWTUCKET -- In the end, Torey Lovullo could not say no to his mentor and close friend John Farrell.
A partnership that took flight as teammates with the California Angels in 1993 and later working side-by-side in the player development ranks with the Cleveland Indians was rekindled Monday, as Lovullo was hired to join Farrellâ€™s coaching staff in Toronto. The former Pawtucket Red Sox manager will serve as the Blue Jaysâ€™ first base coach.
Nobody said the format to crown a single champion for the 2010-11 high school boysâ€™ basketball season would be perfect. The event, which calls for a 16-team bracket, is the first of its kind, meaning it should be viewed as a litmus test by administrators, coaches and players.
But that hasnâ€™t stopped some coaches from the lower divisions in voicing concern on how everything is arranged. The field is broken down so that the first eight slots are awarded to Div. I teams, the next five belong to Div. II, and the last three spaces are set aside for entries from Div. III.
It was great to see Joe Paterno collect his 400th career victory at Penn State on Saturday. I was in the neighborhood for many of the first 120 back in my college days and early sports writing years. It wasnâ€™t always easy dealing with a man who set such high standards for himself and his program. Paterno kept everyone on their toes, beginning with his players and going right down the list, all the way down to the lowest creatures on earth â€¦ the sports writing fraternity.
Eight teams will square off today-- weather permitting -- in the Division II playoffs. And perhaps six of them could actually win the state title that will be decided this coming Sunday at Rhode Island College.
â€śOur division is very close,â€ť Lincoln coach John Dâ€™Aloisio admitted over the weekend. His Lions host North Smithfield at 4 p.m. today.
A day-long rain is in the forecast. Any games postponed today likely would be made up on Tuesday.
Welcome to the Division II football playoffs, home of the complex algorithms.
For those who remember the unprecedented five-way tiebreaker of two years ago that tabulated Woonsocket as the odd team out, a refresher course on the wording of the tiebreaker formula was held after Central knocked off Chariho on Friday night. The 40-12 outcome created a three-way logjam atop the II-A standings with Central, Chariho and Johnston all sporting identical 5-2 records.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Mike Sassi knew his St. Raphael squad could not improve or hinder its playoff position heading into Saturdayâ€™s regular season finale against Ponaganset. Though the Saints were locked in as the third seed in Division II-B, that didnâ€™t stop the head coach from digging deep into his bag of motivational tricks.
PAWTUCKET â€“ Friday nightâ€™s key Division II-A matchup with Johnston High pretty much mirrored the way the season has gone for the Shea High football team. The Raiders were once again their own worst enemies, fumbling the ball seven times, three of which were recovered by the visiting Panthers.
Even as something as simple as recovering an onside kick eluded Shea in the third quarter. So when Johnston smothered the live ball at the 6:58 mark, you had the feeling that whatever slim chance the Raiders had at qualifying for the postseason went up in smoke.