PAWTUCKET — Playing at Max Read Field before a boisterous crowd, Shea High lived up to the high expectations surrounding this club with a decisive 3-0 victory over 2010 Division I champion Barrington on Wednesday afternoon.
Emerson Barros figured in all three scoring plays for the Raiders, setting up forward Joao Cardoso for the first two goals and then scoring the final one with a brilliant run from the left side of the goal.
Shea now leads Division I-North with a 5-1-1 record while Barrington, which was upset by East Providence 2-1 on Monday night, fell to 3-2-1 on the season. Portsmouth, which handed Shea its only loss of the season, remains in second place with a 4-1-0 record.
Shea and Barrington had played to a 1-1 tie on the Eagles’ home field earlier this month.
“This is the first time we’ve defeated Barrington in my nine years as coach,” Shea’s Pierre Ridore said. “We played with a lot of energy and passion today.”
The first half of Wednesday’s game played out nearly as even as the first matchup between the two teams. Shea outshot Barrington 6-4 but the Eagles controlled play for long stretches. In fact, the Raiders did not move the ball across midfield in the first 10 minutes of the game. That ended when midfielder Kevin Andrade broke free down the right side of the field, sending a ball to Cardoso that was quickly broken up by the Eagles’ defense.
Barros, the fastest player on the field, then began to get free from the double and triple coverage he was drawing. At the 14-minute mark, the lanky forward made a run down the right side of the field and crossed the ball to Issifou Kankarafou, just missing his linemate a few yards in front of the goal. But Cardoso got his foot on the pass, controlled the ball for a second and then drilled a shot past Barrington goalie Andrew Jones, who had no chance on the play.
Barrington held its own with Shea in the first half, getting to a lot of balls before the Raiders did, but that trend quickly changed in the second half. Shea’s second goal again began with Barros controlling the ball on the right side of the goal and sending a perfect pass to Cardoso for a point-blank shot past Jones.
Five minutes later, the Raiders made it 3-0. Barros had two great runs in this sequence, this time from the left side of the field. He put a great pass on a teammate’s foot right in front of the goal but the shot attempt was fanned. Within 30 seconds, Barros once again had the ball and this time he took it all the way in and drilled the ball past Jones for a 3-0 lead just 15 minutes into the second half.
The Raiders controlled most of action from that point on, with Barrington managing a couple of direct kicks that were handled by Shea goalkeeper Julio Garcia, who only had one shaky moment in the game, letting one shot slip out of his hands and fall to the ground next to the net midway through the second half. Fortunately, there were no Eagles in position to put the ball past Garcia.
The Raiders now return to action on Friday with a home game against former nemesis Lincoln High.