DURHAM, N.C. â What images do the Pawtucket Red Sox conjure? For longtime fans, the question could elicit all kinds of responses.
You think of Ben Mondor, Pawtucketâs late owner who would have been in his glory this week, enjoying every moment of the pomp and circumstance leading up to tonightâs Triple-A National Championship.
You also think of beautiful McCoy Stadium, a befitting monument to Mondorâs tireless efforts to build a first-class, fan-friendly ballpark out of the rundown facility he inherited.
DURHAM, N.C. â The sum of the phrase âthe 2012 Pawtucket Red Soxâ is much bigger than the 25-man roster at manager Arnie Beyelerâs disposal for tonightâs Triple-A National Championship at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.
With injuries, call-ups, trades and other roster maneuvering, the PawSox needed a proverbial village of ballplayers to get through a challenging season, make the International League playoffs and clinch the Governorsâ Cup.
PROVIDENCE â Through film study, North Smithfield High head coach Wes Pennington attempted to warn his players of the peril they were bound to face Saturday afternoon at Adams-Clanton Morgan Football Field.
Alas, what the Northmen saw on video came to life right before their very eyes.
PAWTUCKET â Fans are invited to McCoy Stadium on Tuesday night to take a photo with the Governorsâ Cup and to watch the PawSox play for the 2012 Triple-A National Championship on the video board.
Gates at McCoy Stadium will open at 6 p.m. with first pitch slated for shortly after 7 oâclock. Admission to this event is free.
Winners of their first Governorsâ Cup since 1984, the PawSox will now play the winner of the Pacific Coast League Playoffs, Reno or Omaha, for the Gildan Triple-A National Championship on Tuesday night in Durham, N.C.
CUMBERLAND --- Give Cumberlandâs âDâ an âAâ for its excellent performance against Central on Friday night.
The Clippers limited the speedy Knights to just 117 yards of offense and only two trips inside Cumberlandâs 30 en route to a well-deserved shutout and a 28-0 victory in their Division II-B meeting at Tucker Field.
Offensively, senior quarterback Brendan Guerin also earned high grades spinning the laces, completing 11 of his 18 passes for 129 yards and three touchdowns, but the story of this night was the Clippersâ defense.
With PawSox manager Arnie Beyeler standing off to the right, the players and coaches celebrate their Governors' Cup triumph in the visiting clubhouse of Knights Stadium Thursday night. Photo by Louriann Mardo-Zayat.
FORT MILL, S.C. â When you cut right to the heart of the matter, itâs pretty fitting that the Pawtucket Red Sox completed their ascension to the top of the International League mountain in the very same stadium that served as the launching point for a two-plus week stretch of unprecedented success.
Now the games count.
The preseason scrimmages, Injury Fund contests, and last weekendâs non-league openers are all history. Now the high school football games, pitting division opponents against each other, mean something in the standings.
And they get under way tonight, with eight league games scattered throughout the state, and one, a Division IV contest between North Smithfield and Hope, taking place tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. in Providence.
PAWTUCKET â PawSox manager Arnie Beyeler likes to point out that each playoff game has been the equivalent of a box of chocolates â you just never know whoâs going to play the role of hero on a given night.
Wednesday saw Pawtucketâs battery of pitcher Zach Stewart and catcher Dan Butler step to the forefront and take their bows. Their induction into the clubâs ever-expanding legion of primetime performers was officially cemented after PawSox silenced the Charlotte Knights, 2-0, in Game Two of the Governorsâ Cup finals before an audience of 3,525.
PAWTUCKET â Lately, much attention has been paid to the hitting exploits of Bryce Brentz â deservedly so, too.
The outfield prospect carried a .471 postseason average into Game Two of the Governorsâ Cup Championship Series, a figure buoyed by a little bit of everything from two home runs to two doubles to five runs batted in.