Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze & Observer 10-31-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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Page 19 of 63

20 SPORTS & RECREATION OCT. 31-NOV. 6, 2019 | BREEZE & OBSERVER | SMITHFIELD SCITUATE FOSTER GLOCESTER early on about commitment, loyalty, toughness, being tough, being men- tally tough, and being prepared." Bennett would need those lessons later in life, as he broke his neck while playing basketball at Nichols College. He said that Bruce, Mary, and sometimes their two children, Jen and Cary, would visit him, and Bruce would visit him at least twice a week and tell him that "he was just in the neighborhood." "Other than my family, he was the first one to see me move my leg, because I was paralyzed from the neck down," Bennett said. "And then when I started walking. He got me into coaching after that, and I have a long history with him and Mary." While Bennett said that he did his "very best" to try to get Ewart to stay and coach his daughter, Megan, "who's coming up into middle school next year," Lynch was fortunate enough to see Ewart coach her three daughters this past season. "My oldest daughter is in the 8th grade, and my twins are in the 7th," Lynch added. "Cameron's first experi- ence running was with Coach Ewart. She has had an amazing experience. She's one of the team's top runners, and she got a great amount of wisdom from him, but also a lot of confidence and an ability to kind of release a lot of anxiety that she's grown up with, so it's changed her life." "Knowing that he's been committed to this for 48 years and nobody else was really taking the initiative, I knew he needed a party," she added. While tears came and went during this celebration, Torregrossa went for the laughs with his speech that may or may not have been politically correct. Torregrossa and Ewart had coached together and even worked as co-ath- letic directors during a brief time. He said they were similar in ways, while not so similar in others. "It will be hard to imagine a coach at Gallagher that is someone other than Bruce," Torregrossa said. Marchand also had a few things to say, noting that Bruce has a unique way of saying how he felt without offending anyone, as well as coaching everyone the same, from an All-Stater to a runner who barely finished a race. Before dinner was served, there was an open mic, as people from the crowd were invited to come up and speak after Ewart spoke. Members of the Smithfield High boys' cross coun- try team also offered a few words, as did members of Gallagher's middle school team, yelling out to Ewart, "We love you." Things went on like this throughout the night, as the food was served and people came up to catch up with their former coach. Both of Ewart's daugh- ters spoke, as did some of their fellow team members. Stories were shared, along with laughter and tears. Lynch also presented both Bruce and Mary with $1,000, which they raised putting on the event. Ewart had said that in retirement he will spend time with Mary. "She's been very patient through the years," he said. "Any wife that is a wife of a coach has to put up with a lot of stuff, and she's put up with more than her share." Ewart said that he will miss coach- ing, but it's time for a new chapter. "The kids are great every year," he said. "I don't have to give them any words of wisdom – just work hard and always give your best effort and things will turn out good." Lynch was happy with the way the event turned out. "I think it's incredible," she said. "He's happy, I'm happy. Everybody is here for him. I think he's shocked. This is all we wanted, just a good night to show memory to him." COACH EWART From Page 18 Allison Picard and Olivia Vezina, was also headed that way, the Huskies' Eva White ended up sealing the match and the championship by defeating Ponaganset senior Ellysa Tancrede in fourth singles, 1-6, 6-4, 6-3. "I'm proud of all the girls, what they did this year, and how they got back here again," said Ponaganset second-year head coach MaryLou Ferri. "This was a tough loss, especially since we had all those matches that went three sets. But all in all, I thought these girls had a great season and I'm really proud of them. It's always tough to lose (in the finals) two years in a row, but guess what? I feel like they're winners no matter what." The Chieftains, who concluded their season with a 12-4 mark, were play- ing in their fifth match in six days – a stretch that began last Monday, Oct. 21, with regular-season victories over East Providence and Scituate and continued with a 4-0 triumph over North Smithfield in the quarterfinals and a 4-1 win over Chariho in last Thursday's semifinals. Did the hectic week take some steam out of the Chieftains? "I don't think it did," Ferri answered. "We had breakfast at my house before we came here like we did last year, and everyone was very focused and very positive. And I thought they played their best today. There were some nerves, but I thought they did very well." In the Chieftains' victory over Chariho at the Broad Rock Middle School courts in Wakefield, which at the time, extended Ponaganset's win streak to six matches, the doubles team of Katie Tancrede and Curry continued its unbeaten season by rolling to a 6-2, 7-5 triumph. Ponaganset also ruled the singles matches behind victories by Campanella (6-3, 6-1), Samantha Harkness in third singles (6-2, 6-4), and Ellysa Tancrede (6-2, 6-2). And 24 hours before that match, the Chieftains wasted little time in shutting out North Smithfield on their home courts. The doubles team of Gray and Daniella Harkness also remained undefeated by netting a 6-1, 6-0 win, and Ellysa Tancrede (6-4 ,6-4), the first doubles team of Kate Mooney and Sara Brouillard (7-6 (5), 6-3), and the doubles tandem of Katie Tancrede and Curry (6-3, 6-4) supplied the other victories. BREEZE PHOTOS BY ERIC BENEVIDES Ponaganset junior AMELIA CAMPANELLA, shown returning a volley during her first singles match, suffered a 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 loss that was one of four three- set matches in last Saturday afternoon's title match. PONAGANSET From Page 17 SAMANTHA HARKNESS Glow Oil heat your home for less 401-475-9955 Check Our Website for Today's Low Heating Oil Price 2044 Smith St., North Providence, RI (401) 231-2370 fax (401) 232-9220 Congratulations! You're Engaged! Come see the largest selection of tuxedos and accessories in RI for all your formal wear needs! Ask about our Wedding Specials Ask about our Wedding Specials Ask about our Wedding Specials

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