Football semifinals move to Wednesday night
Thanks to the generosity of United Rentals, the Woonsocket High football team has been allowed to use the 14 light fixtures they rented from the Smithfield-based company for tonightâ€™s Division II playoff game against Central High at Barry Field and not pay extra for the additional night. (Photo/Ernest A. Brown)
On the surface, the decision to push back the entire slate of R.I. semifinal-round playoff games to Wednesday seems as simple as the quarterback receiving the snap.
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Seven of the eight games on the docket were already based at venues where light fixtures are part of the ambiance. The lone exception: Woonsocketâ€™s Barry Field.
However, thanks to Villa Novans athletic director George Nasuti obtaining portable lights, the situation was remedied.
When the postponement due to inclement weather was announced early Tuesday afternoon, the possibility of Woonsocket having to play Central someplace else was raised. Later in the day, Smithfield-based United Rentals informed Nasuti that Woonsocket can keep the lights for another day, meaning Barry Field will be part of the â€śWednesday Night Lightsâ€ť extravaganza.
â€śThe company has allowed us to use them (Wednesday) and pay for only one night,â€ť Nasuti confirmed.
The companyâ€™s good nature first started last weekend, when the banks of lights were brought to Barry Field in an effort to give Nasuti ample time to get everything in place. Nasuti mentioned that a dry run was held Monday night and that everything went off without a hitch.
â€ś(United Rental) has been very good to us; first by setting them up in the first place and then leaving them an extra night because of the storm,â€ť Nasuti said.
All told, Nasuti secured 14 light fixtures from United Rental with an additional two coming from the City of Woonsocket.
Wednesday nightâ€™s football menu will also feature West Warwick at Cumberland and North Smithfield traveling to Providenceâ€™s Conley Stadium to face Mount Pleasant. Those games along with Central-Woonsocket will kickoff at 6 p.m.
Even though teams were afforded one extra day following the Thanksgiving game, Wednesdayâ€™s winners will be tasked to get ready for the biggest game of the season with just three days of preparation under their belts. The RIIL confirmed that the Super Bowls in all four divisions are still on the docket for Sunday afternoon.
Cranston Stadium will host the Division I and IV championships while East Greenwichâ€™s Carcieri Field has the Division II and III games.
In the event that Wednesdayâ€™s games are postponed, the semifinals would be scraped and the two top remaining seeds in each division would receive automatic admittance to the Super Bowl.