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The R.I. Interscholastic League boys soccer playoffs get under way this afternoon with a Division I quarterfinal matching visiting Portsmouth and Shea High at the McKinnon/Alves Complex in Pawtucket.
The game pits two rivals from the hard-fought East, which Shea won with a final record of 11-3-4. Portsmouth, which defeated Shea once and tied the Raiders in their other meeting, took third place in the East with a 10-5-3 record.
The Division II tournament kicks off on Friday with North runnerup Tolman (13-1-2) hosting Middletown (11-4-1 in the South) at 6 p.m. at McKinnon/Alves.
â€śWe played them in the first round last year, too,â€ť Tolman coach Jack Couto said, â€śand the game came down to penalty kicks. We won that one and we expect another tough game this Friday.â€ť
Three Division III games are also on tap Friday. Burrillville and St. Raphael Academy both drew tough matchups. The Broncos, 7-9-2 in D-III, visit a 15-2-1 Classical team at 5:30 p.m. The Saints, 5-10-2, travel to unbeaten Exeter/West Greenwich, which won the South with a 16-0-0 record. That match will begin at 3 p.m.
North Smithfield, the fifth seed in D-III, will visit fourth-seeded Tiverton for a 7 p.m. game on Friday night.
On Saturday, the quarterfinals resume in Division I with North champion Central Falls hosting rival Cumberland in a 3 p.m. matchup at the Higginson Avenue soccer field.
The Division I semifinals are scheduled for 5 and 7 p.m. on Monday evening at Cranston Stadium. Shea, Central Falls and Cumberland are located in the bottom half of the bracket. Top-seed La Salle is in the top half.
The girlsâ€™ brackets havenâ€™t been completely filled out yet due to the incomplete regular season. Cumberland hosts top-seeded La Salle this afternoon at 3:45 p.m. in the regular season finale for both teams. The Clippers 10-6-1 on the season, should be seeded in the middle of the pack for the quarterfinals, which are scheduled to begin next Monday.
Lincoln High has drawn second seed in Division II behind unbeaten Exeter/West Greenwich. The Lions will host a quarterfinal game at 3:30 p.m. next Monday. Mount St. Charles (14-3-0) hosts EWG (17-0-0) on Friday in the regular season finale, then will fit into the seeded field and open play next Monday, site and time yet to be determined.
Either Ponaganset (7-6-5) or North Smithfield (8-7-3) is scheduled to play Westerly in a play-in game today or Friday, according to the Interscholastic League website.
In Division III, Shea will host a play-in game against Johnston at 3:30 p.m. on Friday. The Raiders finished with an 8-7-1 record, good for eighth place, and Johnston took ninth with a 7-8-1 mark.
Burrillville (14-2-0) drew the second seed in the tournament and will face the winner of the West Warwick/Masters play-in at 3 p.m. next Monday in the quarterfinals. The Shea/Johnston winner will visit top seed Narragansett (16-0-0) next Monday.
St. Raphael Academy, seeded fourth in D-III, will host fifth-seeded Cranston East at 3:30 p.m. The Saints (12-4-0) are in the top half of the bracket and likely would face Narragansett in the semifinals on Thursday, Nov. 10, assuming they can get past Cranston East (12-3-1).
The boysâ€™ state championship matches will be played on Saturday, Nov. 12, at R.I. College. The girlsâ€™ title game will be played on Nov. 13 at RIC.