It came down to which team wanted it more. For the second time this season, that team was Coventry, beating East Greenwich, the top team in DII-South, Wednesday night by a score of 2-1. The win gave the Oakers a spot in the playoffs. The Avengers go into the playoffs with a 12-4 record.
The Oakers were jubilant with the win.
“EG’s been a tough competitor for us in the past so it just feels good to get some revenge on them,” said Coventry junior Joe Corcelli, who scored both goals Wednesday, as well as two of three goals in Coventry’s win against EGHS earlier this season. “To get two wins on the first seed, it’s a good feeling.”
“We kind of put ourselves in a situation that we needed to dig ourselves out of by tying Vets a couple of games ago and by losing to Westerly the other day,” said Oakers coach Rick Frigon. “We needed this game in order to make the playoffs, to get the .500 record. That’s exactly what they came out and did.
“I’m just extremely happy for them and it couldn’t have come at a better time to catapult us into the playoffs,” Frigon said.
Avenger senior co-captain Anthony Melnick said his team was tired going into Wednesday’s game.
“We were out of shape, tired, because we just played Middletown two days ago, one of the stronger teams in our league,” Melnick said. “Tired legs, and it’s also the mentality. Whoever comes out and wants it more - they outplayed us.”
EG coach Pat McGuirl agreed.
“We’re working hard, the kids are working hard. No complaints as far as the effort,” he said. “We needed a result this week in two games and we got beat twice.”
Going into the playoffs next week, he said, “hopefully we can get the ships pointing in the right direction again.”
Coventry scored first on Wednesday - Corcelli’s goal came with an assist by Jake Harrington in the first half. EG answered with a goal by Conner Pease off an assist by Jack Payette. In the second half, Corcelli again scored, this time with an assist by Dan Coutu. A strong defensive effort by the Oakers held the Avengers to the single goal.
“It was a back-and-forth game - EG is a great team - but tonight we just wanted it more,” Frigon said.
The EGHS Avengers also celebrated its seniors on Wednesday night. The seniors were Co-Captains Oscar Goodwin, Anthony Melnick and Conner Pease, as well as Brandon Sticca, Daniel Ling, Anthony D'Abrosca and Derek Ferra.