PROVIDENCE --- St. Raphael Academyâ€™s home field at the McKinnon-Alves Complex promises to be buzzing with fans lined up and down its sidelines tonight when the Saints host Rogers High in a 5:30 p.m. contest and senior standout Kytresa Ivey-Jones takes aim at a coveted milestone only a select few high school players ever reach.
Ivey-Jones moved two goals away from the 100-goal mark in her truly remarkable career on Monday afternoon by finding the back of the net three times and helping her team roll to a 7-0 triumph over Central High in their Division III meeting at the Providence Career and Technical Academyâ€™s complex.
Ivey-Jones, who has scored 20 or more goals in each of her four seasons with the Saints, increased her season total to 26, and more importantly, helped her team remain unbeaten at 11-0-1 and in the thick of the battle for first place with Narragansett (12-0) and Burrillville (10-1).
â€śI never thought Iâ€™d ever come close (to 100 goals),â€ť admitted Ivey-Jones. â€śMy freshman year, I was our teamâ€™s leading scorer, but I didnâ€™t think Iâ€™d do that well again in my next three years. Iâ€™m proud of myself, and Iâ€™m just happy I can help my team have a chance to win a state championship this year.â€ť
â€śNot many players get to 100,â€ť added SRA coach Ashley Femino. â€śIâ€™m so happy for her. Sheâ€™s just a phenomenal player and she deserves it. Kytresa has 98 goals, but she also has a crazy amount of assists, so sheâ€™s not greedy with the ball.â€ť
Ivey-Jones had a pair of assists (her 12th and 13th of the season) during a late scoring blitz by the Saints that saw them notch four goals in the final 16 minutes of play to put away a pesky Central squad that was 1-9-2, but giving the Saints a battle for three-quarters of the afternoon.
The Saints quickly jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the gameâ€™s first six minutes on Hennasey Ogniâ€™s 10th goal of the season and Ivey-Jones first goal, but they were unable to net their third goal until the initial minutes of the second half, as Ivey-Jones scored off an up-close shot that deflected off a Central defender.
â€śThe short field got us,â€ť said Femino. â€śWe were trying to play our longball game and our forwards just couldnâ€™t catch up with the ball, so in the second half, we switched to more of a short passing game and that seemed to work better for us.â€ť
Ivey-Jonesâ€™s sister, Kyanna Ivey-Jones, also contributed to the offense by scoring her 20th goal of the year and adding her 12th assist. Trina Lomba also had a goal, and goalkeeper Caitlin Dunne, who played the first half of the game in net, played midfield in the second half and also added to the score.
Dunne and Quinci Eauceo, who played goal in the second half, teamed up to stop seven shots (five by Eauceo), and the closest the Knights came to scoring was a 15-yard shot by Julia Lopez with 10 minutes to play in the game that hit the crossbar.
The shutout was the eighth of the season for the Saints, who along with Burrillville and Narragansett, have allowed a season-low seven this season.
And speaking of the Broncos and the Mariners, the Saints will finally face them over the next seven days. After tonightâ€™s game with Rogers, the Saints will entertain the Broncos on Thursday at 5:30 p.m., and next Monday, they will visit the Mariners in a 4 p.m. clash.
â€śWeâ€™re playing Burrillville on our Senior Night, so hopefully that will give us an edge over them,â€ť said Femino, â€śand Narragansett will be a big test, so hopefully we can give them their first loss and jump into first place.â€ť
St. Raphael 2 â€“ 5 â€“ 7
Central 0 â€“ 0 â€“ 0
First half: SRA â€“ Hennasey Ogni (Kyanna Ivey-Jones), 4:00; SRA â€“ Kytresa Ivey-Jones (Hennasey Ogni), 6:00.
Second half: SRA â€“ Kytresa Ivey-Jones (unassisted), 4:00; SRA â€“ Trina Lomba (Kytresa Ivey-Jones), 24:00; SRA â€“ Caitlin Dunne (Kytresa-Ivey Jones), 27:00; Kytresa Ivey-Jones (Lauren Gaj), 29:00; SRA â€“ Kyanna Ivey-Jones (Mellany Rodas), 39:00.
Shots on goal: St. Raphael 19, Central 7. Goalie saves: SRA â€“ Caitlin Dunne (first half, 2 saves), Quinci Eacueo (second half, 5 saves), C â€“ Christina Martinelli (12 saves).