August 1, 2021

Spotlight on Sports


The Covid 19 crisis has put a hold on most sporting activities in East Providence as well as throughout the nation.  This is the time of year when local youth sports, especially little leagues are in near peak form.  Even though Rhode Island LL teams have fared well in national tournament play, this is the first year ever that the World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania has been canceled.  Local leagues however are hoping to return to league play soon.  Some players are hoping to participate in travel leagues other than little league.  Some parents addressed the city council meeting in late May and asked for assistance in opening local ball fields to play.  Mayor Bob DaSilva responded that the city is mostly bound by the Governor’s executive orders and the health department.

Recently the Governor said youth sports can resume on June 1st but only groups of “stable” 15 players or less can practice.  This means only with the same group of kids, not mixing with others.  Players and teams cannot play in leagues and tournament play.  Practice play can go on but coaches and adults must wear masks.  Shared equipment must be cleaned.  The Governor is looking to formal team play to resume in Phase three of re-opening the state, possibly in July.

Rumford Little League president Eddie Wencis and his league have formulated a plan which they have lobbied city and state officials to review and hopefully accept.  Part of the plan states sets “Hygiene Protocols:”

  • All youth are instructed to eliminate direct physical contact, including handshaking and high fives.
  • Player parents will have an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol at the fields.
  • Players will have their own equipment, water bottles, etc. and will not share with other youth.
  • Cover coughing or sneezing with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash hands. If no tissue is available, then cough into your elbow
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with your hands
  • To avoid sharing germs, please clean up after yourself. DO NOT make others responsible for moving, unpacking, and packing up your personal belongings.

Haley Massa of EPHS was recently named the RI Gymnastics Leadership Award recipient.  “EPHS does not have a gymnastics team but that doesn't mean we don't have gymnasts.  Our girls compete as individuals.  Congratulations to the Townies' Haley Massa for receiving the RI Gymnastics Leadership Award. Townie Pride Never Sleeps!”  -  EP Athletic Director, Gregg Amore.

New England Soccer Journal Mentions EP’s Capelo
The New England Soccer Journal Magazine cited East Providence’s Colin Capelo as an extraordinary soccer player.  “Capelo is a central midfielder who can do a bit of everything for the Townies,” said the publication.  Capelo was considered a “top 12 player.”  “His on ball comfort allows him to glide past defenders and break the lines with quick combination play.  He joins the attack to finish off chances,” quotes the article.

“One of our star athletes at EPHS, Colin was the leading scorer in Division I last season.  He is also a good student and and a great young man. Townie Pride Never Sleeps!” said East Providence Athletic Director, Gregg Amore.

Will School Sports Resume in September?
The pandemic continues to dictate the schedule for school sports.  As of this writing it has not been determined by the Rhode Island Interscholastic league or the Governor if school sports will resume in September in the traditional way.  After losing the entire spring sports season, returning student athletes are hoping to resume play in the fall.  A couple of changes face EPHS sports when school resumes.  The football team will have a new coach in Jon Stringfellow as reported here previously.  Boys soccer will stay in Division I.   Coach Tony Vieira is optimistic about the team’s chances.  Colin Capelo should help lead the EP effort.  The EP girls soccer team will be coached again by Angelo Pizzi.  They will remain in Division II after a good year.  “It is going to be a very competitive division.  Cranston East was in the D3 finals last year.   Prout and Scituate were D1 playoff teams last year.  Burrillville, Lincoln, and East Greenwich are very strong teams.  We have huge shoes to fill this year.  We graduated 9 seniors, including our All-State Midfielder - Alyssa DeOliviera and our All-Division Goalkeeper - Mia Jackson.  However, our current girls are hungry and athletic. We have a mix of youth and experience with a strong desire to succeed.  Our goal is to be competitive in every game,” said head coach Pizzi.

Townies girl basketball still struggling to rebuild will drop down to Division II.  After being ranked a little less than midway through all teams, the team accepts the Division II placement in hopes of gaining strength. 

Townies boys basketball finished strong last year as they made it to the final four in Division I before the pandemic shut down the season.  The Townies will compete with South Kingstown, Cranston East, Hendricken, Central, LaSalle, Mt. Pleasant, Barrington, Narragansett, Westerly, North Kingstown and Classical.  Basketball plays in the winter season, not September.


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