Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Pawtucket 04-07-2021

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 10 of 42

Pawtucket Edition Sports & Recreation @ APRIL 7-13, 2021 PAWTUCKET – As a former stand- out player for St. Raphael Academy in the mid-'80s and the head coach of the Saints' football team for nearly a quarter century, Mike Sassi has encountered a healthy share of the 79 games that have taken place in the storied rivalry between his alma mater and its former Thanksgiving Day rival, Tolman High. "I grew up in this rivalry," said Sassi. "My five sisters and my brother all went to Tolman – I was the young- est of seven and I went to St. Ray's. You can take the (Thanksgiving) game away from us, but whenever we play each other, I'm sorry, but I just think that there's more excitement there than anybody else we play." Last Saturday morning, the two Pawtucket rivals stepped onto Max Read Field for a Division II-A show- down, with their sights set on jumping out to a 2-0 start and taking a step closer to earning a D-II playoff berth. And as they did during the tail end of their holiday rivalry (that ended in 2001), the Saints came away with a lopsided victory. Junior quarterback Andre Gray delivered over 100 yards through the air and on the ground and scored a pair of touchdowns, and the Saints' defense, which received a superb game from sophomore linebacker Moses Meus, collected three turnovers and limited to Tigers to 121 yards of offense en route to a 33-7 triumph. The Saints, who dazzled on both sides of the ball in their previ- ous weekend's 43-6 win over West Warwick, seemed to pick up where they left off in that game, especially Gray and Meus, whose splendid per- formances highlighted an outstanding day for the Walcott Street school. Gray led the way offensively by not only running for 133 yards on 14 carries, but also connecting on seven of his 12 passes for 113 yards, with 63 coming on a touchdown pass to sophomore Ethan McCann-Carter 31 seconds into the second quarter and giving the Saints a 13-0 lead. "He still has some work to do on things," Sassi noted of Gray, who also had an acrobatic interception on 'D' in the opening quarter. "He short- hopped a few throws today, and he knows it. But he's a winner, and I told him that I trust him as much as any quarterback that I've had, as far as combining the intelligence with the athletic ability. It's a great combina- tion." Meus, meanwhile, did a little of everything for the Saints, especially on defense, as he led the way with 12 tackles, four resulting in a loss of yard- age, and sacked Tolman quarterback Jordan Cooper twice for a loss of 15 yards. He also lined up as a tight end and caught a pair of passes from Gray for 22 yards, and he blocked two punts on special teams. Two more juniors out of the backfield, Napoleon Debarros and BREEZE PHOTO BY ERIC BENEVIDES St. Raphael Academy junior tailback HENRIQUE ROSS, #6, shows the ball to the official after scoring a touchdown on a 1-yard run in front of Tolman junior defensive lineman DEVIN WARD, #78, SRA senior guard JACK MAJKUT, #63, and SRA fresh- man guard KHAMARI BROWN, #71, during the first quarter of the Saints' 33-7 win last Saturday morning at Max Read Field. Saints tackle Tigers Gray, Meus lead SRA to second Div. II-A victory By ERIC BENEVIDES Valley Breeze Sports Editor See FOOTBALL, Page 12 Letters to the Editor Letters to the Editor are welcome from readers. Please: • Limit to 500 words. Longer letters may appear online only. • Letters on local or state topics and issues will take precedence over those on national issues. • No more than one letter per person every 8 weeks, please. • All letters must be signed and include a hometown. Send by e-mail to:, or mail to The Valley Breeze, 6 Blackstone Valley Place, Suite 204, Lincoln, RI 02865. ACROSS 1. One who manufac- tures 6. Science degree 9. Database manage- ment system 13. Desert 14. Inventor Musk 15. Welsh valley 16. Round Dutch cheese 17. Saying 18. Comedian and TV host 19. Uppermost por- tions of the brain 21. City in Transyl- vania 22. Where astronauts go 23. Men's hairstyle 24. Indicates position 25. One point east of due south 28. Businessmen may have one 29. Grass part 31. Running back Gurley 33. Unwavering 36. Options 38. Annoy 39. Greek mountain 41. Pastas 44. Fishes 45. Wrap 46. Potentially a criminal (slang) 48. Seize 49. The Constitution State 51. Upset 52. 1991 men's Wim- bledon champ 54. Central Chinese province 56. Predisposition 60. A notice of some- one's death 61. One-time Ken- tucky Rep. 62. Swiss river 63. Dried-up 64. Finger millet 65. __ Allan Poe 66. German river 67. Brew 68. Kenyan river DOWN 1. Millisecond 2. Acts as military assistant 3. Knot in a tree 4. Husband-and- wife industrial designers 5. The Ocean State 6. Point the finger at 7. Parts in a machine 8. Midway between northeast and east 9. Portray precisely 10. Blister 11. Mental illness 12. Nose of an animal 14. What students receive 17. Semitic peoples 20. Beats per minute 21. Family of drugs 23. Atrocious 25. Type of micro- scope (abbr.) 26. __ or bust 27. Icelandic poems 29. A citizen of Pakistan 30. Very pale 32. Metric linear unit 34. Sea eagle 35. Biblical judge of Israel 37. Isaac's mother (Bib.) 40. Sino-Soviet block (abbr.) 42. Cool! 43. Large hotel room 47. Type of boat (abbr.) 49. Picked 50. Type of hookah 52. Attack 53. Directs 55. Belgian WWII resistance fighter 56. Finished negoti- ation 57. Heroic tale 58. Middle Eastern country 59. Protein-rich liquids 61. Malaysian Isth- mus 65. Spielberg's alien Answers to this week's crossword puzzle can be found on page 13.

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