Archive - Sports Article
January 13th, 2014
LINCOLN â€” Though a year had passed, Lincoln High sophomore Mollie Westrick and junior Nicole Moneghan hadnâ€™t forgotten how the Westerly aquawomen had sailed to a Division II dual-meet victory.
In fact, the Bulldogs had pulled off wins in each of the previous three winter seasons, and the Lions desperately wanted to â€śturn the tide,â€ť so to speak.
CUMBERLAND â€” When it came time for Chris Skurka to make the biggest football decision of his life, he turned to a voice of reassurance and clarity.
Alison Skurka, the coachâ€™s wife, had a quick answer. A staunch supporter of her husbandâ€™s pigskin endeavors, Alison gave Chris her blessing to make the jump from head coach at Cumberland High to becoming an assistant at Dean College.
â€śSheâ€™s allowed me to chase that dream,â€ť said Chris Skurka. â€śUltimately, it came down to me making a decision about my family and my career as a coach.â€ť
CUMBERLAND â€” Senior standouts Cody Beaudette and Chris Hayes captured their weight classes to help Cumberland win a close battle for the team championship in this past weekendâ€™s John D. Gorman Memorial Tournament at the Clippersâ€™ Wellness Center.
The Clippers, who returned to the top of the team standings after watching Johnston finish first last year, scored 159.5 points to beat 17 other teams (representing four New England states) and nip runner-up Bristol Eastern of Connecticut by 1.5 points.
LINCOLN â€“ Itâ€™s true: Over the last eight years, Davies Tech compiled a dismal overall league record of 10 wins and 120 losses.
Thatâ€™s a winning percentage of .077. If you follow baseball, think of that as a batting average.
But none of that has bothered second-year head coach Bill Meekins, who truly believes his Patriots are on the upswing. He had proof on Thursday night after his club shelled Ponaganset, 63-47, in a Division III-North clash at Gaskin Alumni Hall.
LINCOLN â€” The high school hockey rivalry between Lincoln and Cumberland is beyond intense. Granted, they may compete on the second tier below those battles between perennial state powers Mount St. Charles-Hendricken and/or La Salle, but it doesn't mean the Lions or Clippers care any less about not just defeating but crushing the other.
After all, town bragging rights are at stake. Geez, it runs the gamut from football to basketball, baseball to track, even swimming and lacrosse.
LINCOLN â€” When Mike Tuorto took over as the Lincoln High wrestling coach five years ago, his primary goal was to change the philosophy surrounding the program â€“ that is, from one where mere participation was accepted to one where coaches and athletes alike craved wins, not to mention championships.
He claimed he began to see the varsity team take strides in becoming more competitive his first two seasons, but since has witnessed a renaissance of sorts.
PROVIDENCE â€“ After watching his team dismantle Georgetown for its Big East win the season, PC head coach Ed Cooley touched upon the ominous cloud that has hovered over his program in recent weeks.
From a three-game losing streak that included a pair of stinging overtime defeats and a 30-point blowout against Villanova, to Brandon Austinâ€™s decision to leave without playing a single regular-season minute, to a fire at Cooleyâ€™s East Greenwich home that forced his family to evacuate, the head coach saw an opening to address all concerns following the Friarsâ€™ 70-52 bludgeoning of the Hoyas.
Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET â€” Tolman High coach Mike Kayata has been juggling a bunch of individual talents over the first month of the season while looking for the one piece that will turn his team into a cohesive machine on offense.
â€śIâ€™ve been looking for a point guard,â€ť the coach said after the Tigers rolled to a 70-56 victory over Shea High in the annual James W. Donaldson Memorial Scholarship game before a full house of vocal fans from both schools.
Examining the stat sheet and learning that newcomer Prince Johnson Jr. collected 10 assists on the night, Kayata smiled.
Itâ€™s time for Providence College basketball fans to put everything in proper perspective.
Theyâ€™re an upset group due to the administration imposing a season-long suspension from game competition on two freshmen. They feel the sentence is a tad on the harsh side, especially in the wake of no reported legal wrongdoings.
Success can come at a hefty price. In the Rhode Island Interscholastic League, this double-edged sword is sharpened every few years or so when the time comes to realign the divisions.
Caught in the crosshairs are non-Division I teams that have achieved and sustained success over a designated period of time. Add a dash of enrollment and presto, what appears is a surefire recipe for relocation to a higher division.
PROVIDENCE -- If you measure progress by wins, the Rhode Island men's basketball team has certainly made progress in coach Dan Hurley's second season.
After winning just eight games last season, the Rams picked matched last season's win total Wednesday night against Brown.
Senior guard Xavier Munford had his most efficient day night of the season with 25 points on just 18 shots and freshman E.C. Matthews scored 21 points to earn the Rams their first road win of the season with a 75-68 victory over the Bears at the Pizzitola Center.
WOONSOCKET â€“ If the recent past is any indication, Lincoln High should be able to withstand the onslaught Cumberland will bring when the two archrivals meet in a key Division II-North matchup at 7:30 tonight at Adelard Arena.
A year ago, the Lions posted a rather easy win in their first regular-season clash, though the Clippers forged a thrilling 3-3 stalemate on this same ice last February; that became the lone blemish on a slate that included an eventual 23-0-1 mark, not to mention the capture of the R.I. Division II Tournament championship.
Things have a tendency to move pretty quickly around here â€“ almost too quickly to catch up and fully appreciate what has transpired. On a day-to-day basis, we concern ourselves with concrete items such as wins or losses, how many points a team puts up, or whether the season culminates in championship glory. So sometimes itâ€™s easy to overlook the small, but significant individual moments.
December 31st, 2013
Each year, the Blackstone Valley boasts its share of amateur championship teams (from the high school ranks to the summer amateur leagues) and tremendous individual performances that rank among the very best in Rhode Island.
But itâ€™s been quite some time since this region has seen an outpouring of success such as the events that transpired during 2013.
Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET â€” â€śGood game, eh?â€ť veteran official Frank Iannetta said with a smile as he stood in front of the scorerâ€™s table with one minute left in Monday nightâ€™s Division I contest between St. Raphael Academy and South Kingstown.
The Saints were clinging to a 47-46 lead at the time in one of those typically competitive high school games that seem to regularly occur at the Dennis Lynch Jr. Memorial Court. As Iannetta joked with the scorerâ€™s table personnel, Saints coach Tom Sorrentine spoke to his team, trying to draw up a play for his best shooter, Graham Lynch.
Sports editor emeritus
PAWTUCKET â€“ When St. Raphael Academy decided to dedicate its Alumni Hall basketball court in memory of the late Dennis M. Lynch Jr., a revered Saints hoop coach back in the 1980s, the school and the Lynch family reached out to Wheeler School to provide the opposition.
CUMBERLAND â€” In the end, Woonsocket High took advantage of five turnovers in the final 3:37 while mustering an 11-0 flurry in the span of 2:43 to roll to a 63-51 triumph over Tolman in the championship game of the 41st annual Boys & Girls Club of Cumberland/Lincoln Roadshow Holiday Classic on Friday night.
It turned out to be the Villa Novansâ€™ team-leading eighth in the history of the oldest holiday tourney in Rhode Island. Had the Tigers eked it out, it wouldâ€™ve been their sixth, which would have pushed them into a three-place tie with host Cumberland and Lincoln.
PROVIDENCE â€” One of the two suspended freshmen is back on Providence Collegeâ€™s campus. Forward Rodney â€śRajayâ€ť Bullock was a full-fledged participant at Fridayâ€™s practice and will be part of the traveling party when the Friars head to Amherst to tango with nationally-ranked UMass on Saturday night.
CUMBERLAND â€” Tolman High head coach Mike Kayata admitted to being less than ecstatic about his offense on Thursday night.
His defense, however, was a different story.
Excepting a lull early in the final stanza, that â€śDâ€ť forced most of Lincolnâ€™s 18 turnovers throughout the first half and down the stretch as the Tigers rolled to a 56-40 victory in the first semifinal of the 41st annual Boys & Girls Club of Cumberland/Lincoln Roadshow Holiday Classic at Cumberland Highâ€™s Wellness Center.
SMITHFIELD â€” The future was on display for Cumberland on Thursday afternoon inside Smithfield Highâ€™s gymnasium, and judging by the way the Clippers performed in its non-league game against Woonsocket, the future looks very bright for the program.
Freshman guard Julianne Ross delivered her second 10-point output in as many games and sophomore guard Taylor Fay and Sarah Marsland had solid performances as well in the Clippersâ€™ 39-23 victory over the Villa Novans in the opening game of the 27th annual R.I. Board of Officials/Smithfield Boosters Club Holiday Classic.