Archive - Sports Article
September 18th, 2011
The first weekend of league play in Rhode Island football provided a hint of what to expect in the season ahead from local teams.
In a most evenly-matched contest, Tolman High outlasted St. Raphael Academy 22-14 on Friday night. The Tigers are coming off a 2010 season in which they lost in the Division II Super Bowl to two-time champion Woonsocket.
The Villa Novans, meanwhile, laid an egg in their opener on Saturday, losing to Pilgrim, 18-7.
FOXBORO â€” Vince Wilfork was having a playful conversation with Pepper Johnson a couple weeks ago when a most unlikely topic arose.
â€śMan, I might end my career without an interception,â€ť Wilfork told his defensive line coach.
Wilfork then asked a fellow defensive lineman if heâ€™d ever reeled in a pick.
â€śNope, never had one,â€ť the teammate replied.
Well, in addition to the Patriotsâ€™ 35-21 victory over the Chargers at Gillette Stadium, Wilfork had extra cause to celebrate on Sunday.
When it comes to that first NFL interception, heâ€™s officially off the schneid.
PROVIDENCE â€” The training has been going well, but the weekly mileage is about a third of what heâ€™s accustomed to.
Nursing a knee injury for the better part of the year, a stress fracture that has derailed his training targeted towards a possible trip to the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, Roland Lavallee wasnâ€™t looking at setting any kind of PRs at the CVS Caremark Downtown 5K. He was just at Sundayâ€™s race to help his teammates and test his legs on the five-kilometer course.
The results were satisfying.
WARWICK â€” Mistakes were made by Ponaganset High in its Division II-B opener against Toll Gate on Saturday. In the first half alone, the Chieftains committed 14 penalties, two of which negated touchdowns.
Still, despite the numerous yellow flags tossed, it was smooth sailing for the Chieftains, who scored four times in the initial half and cruised to a dominating 38-0 triumph over the Titans. Senior quarterback Chris Larabee tossed for two touchdowns, senior Sam Fasano rushed for a pair of scores and junior Scott Peterson also found the end zone twice for the Chieftains.
PROVIDENCE â€” North Smithfieldâ€™s resurgent football program took a step backwards on Saturday afternoon, turning the ball over five times during an 18-10 loss to Hope High.
â€śExtremely frustrating,â€ť Northmen coach Wes Pennington said when asked to describe what he had just seen. â€śWe fought hard but you canâ€™t win football games turning the ball over like that.â€ť
Fresh off a season-opening 55-26 romp over Burrillville, the Northmen entered their Division IV opener seeking to maintain the momentum built by the 2010 squad that qualified for the playoffs with a 6-2 league record.
WOONSOCKET â€” Two-time defending Division II champion Woonsocket High faces a loaded Tolman squad next weekend in a rematch of last yearâ€™s Super Bowl.
The preparation for the big showdown at Barry Field will be thorough for the Villa Novans. Chances are that workload will be intensified slightly more after their II-B opener against visiting Pilgrim Saturday afternoon.
PAWTUCKET â€” This is a victory that Cumberland High soon wonâ€™t forget.
Boasted by a strong defense that came up huge when it mattered most, Cumberland held on for a 14-7 final against Shea High in the Division II-A for both schools Friday night at Max Read Field. The Clippers scored the go-ahead touchdown early in the fourth quarter behind a one-yard run by Ryan Gaumond â€“ one of two in the contest â€“ before surviving a frantic finish in which the Raiders let a first-and-goal opportunity at the Cumberland 4 with less than a minute remaining slip through their grasp.
WOONSOCKET â€“ Lincoln High was a state runner-up last year in Division II and lost five players from that squad, but it has a solid nucleus that has come back.
After back-to-back state crowns in Div. IV, Woonsocket was moved up two divisions last fall and struggled with just one victory. This seasonâ€™s team has some talented players, but is still fairly young.
NORTH PROVIDENCE --- One not-so-great half of soccer resulted in North Smithfield Highâ€™s first loss of the season on Thursday afternoon.
North Providence High received a pair of second-half goals from Alexander Mendoza to break a 1-1 tie and soar to a 3-1 triumph over the Northmen in their battle of Division III-North unbeatens at the Ricci Athletic Complex.
PROVIDENCE - Besides looking at the thousands of runners and walkers lined on Francis Street for the start of the CVS Caremark Downtown 5K, thereâ€™s something else that puts a smile on the face of race director Charlie Breagy.
Itâ€™s good weather.