Friday, January 31, 2014

Wrestling Keeps Rollin'

The wrestling Hawks made their way to J-Town last night to take on Coventry, Toll Gate, and Johnston in consecutive matches. The most interesting aspect of the combined meet was that their first opponent of the night, Coventry, has widely been viewed as a contender for this year's state title; as a result, the Hawks came ready to do battle with a tough Coventry squad in what would most likely be their toughest match yet this season. 

By the end of the match, the defending state champions had delivered a clear message to the Oakers, dropping only one of the fourteen contests and rolling to a 72-3 win. The Hawks finished off the meet by dropping Toll Gate and Johnston, 67-3 and 67-12, respectively.
The wrestlers are in action next on Saturday, when they travel to Concord, New Hampshire for the Capitol City Classic, and then again on Wednesday, when they'll be at home to take on the North Kingstown Skippers.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Do You Do the Deal?

The "Stone & Z" Show returned this afternoon in post-exam mode, and there was no shortage of topics to discuss - in addition to a reasonably big announcement concerning The Network, which veteran anchor Zach Johnson broke at the end of the show.

And, of course, Stone and the Z-Man were joined by the voice of reason, Cam Brennan, who will be launching his college basketball show this Monday.

The biggest topic that the boys discussed came right out of the gate, when they put on the table the very subtle whispers of a one-for-one swap between the Arizona Cardinals and the Patriots: Larry Fitzgerald for Rob Gronkowski.  If you're the Patriots' general manager, do you do that deal?

There's a lot to discuss in that trade scenario - a lot.  The boys broke it all down fairly well.

Obviously, there was generous talk and predictions with regard to Super Bowl XLVIII, and as already mentioned, a significant announcement about an upcoming event involving The Network.

The entire show can be seen in the central UStream viewer at the top of the page.

Hawks' Basketball Podcast for 1/30/14, Parts 1 & 2

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Basketball Cruises Past South Kingstown, Goes to 6-1

Sunday afternoon basketball certainly seems as though it can be a fun. Everyone's a little bit more relaxed than they might be on a weekday school night, and there's still the remainder of Sunday to enjoy once the game's finished. Pepin gym didn't seem to be quite as full, but that didn't put any kind of a damper on what was a very good game for the Hawks. 

Of course, The Network was on hand to broadcast the game live, although some technical difficulties - the microphone in the first half, and the wi-fi in the second - gave us some minor fits. On the whole, however, the broadcast team of Johnathan Feeny and Cam Brennan did their usual bang-up job.  The majority of the first half can still be seen in the central UStream viewer at the top of the page. 

It was the Hawks who enjoyed themselves this afternoon, much more so than the South Kingstown Rebels, who came into Hendricken with a 2-10 record. Based on the majority of the way that the game played out, it's difficult to say whether the first few minutes of the game - when SK jumped out to a 7-0 lead - was the result of a fast start by the Rebels or the Hawks' coming out of the gate flat. In either case, that lead evaporated quickly, and the Hawks wound up outscoring the Rebels 65-24 the rest of the way, en route to a 65-31 victory. 

As the Hawks got their offense untracked, they were helped considerably along the way by the outside shooting of EJ Nygren (14 points) and Dmitri Rosa (two three-pointers). Nygren's shot was working all afternoon, as evidenced here...

...and with a nice follow-up of a Rosa miss here.

One of Rosa's three's can be seen here...,

...and Chris O'Brien even chipped into the shooting barrage with a three of his own.

The Hawks go to 6-1 in league play, with some pretty big games approaching quickly. The Hawks will be in action this week on Tuesday when they travel to play Hope High School at 7 pm and on Friday night at home, when they take on defending state champion and current front-runner Classical, a game that will be broadcast right here on The Network. Game time for that one will also be 7 pm. 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Hockey Falls from the Ranks of the Unbeaten, Suffers Tough Loss to Smithfield, 3-2

The students and fans at Smithfield high school were ready for this one. Take a look:

All of which, of course, makes last night's loss to the Smithfield Sentinels a tough one. 

It'd probably be pretty fair to say that most people in attendance at Smithfield Municipal Ice Rink last night expected the Hawks to win, possibly even win big. While the Sentinels are certainly a good team - as their record indicates - merely judging by some of the scattered commentary in the stands leading up to game time, the prevailing sentiment seemed to be for a Hawks' win. 

On this count, there were two problems for the Hawks: first, based on the seeming level of their play for the first period-and-a-half, one might think that the Hawks may have felt the same way; second, the people in the stands don't play the game, and none of them told the Sentinels. 

As last night's contest was broadcast live right here on The Network, viewers can draw their own conclusions. While it would certainly be unfair to say that our guys played poorly, which they certainly didn't, as evidenced by their play during the last 1 1/2 periods of the game and into overtime - it would seem fair to say that they came out of the gate somewhat flat. It took the Hawks a while to bring their skates up-to-speed. 

While that was happening, the Sentinels seemed to everywhere on the ice, playing aggressive offense (even when the Hawks were on power plays, the Sentinels were forcing the play into the Hawks' end) and irritating, pesky defense. Our guys just couldn't get anything going. The Sentinels may have awoken the Hawks to an extent with an early first-period goal off the stick of Dave Gaulin, but as the Hawks seemingly continued to skate one stride behind their opponents even into the second period, the Sentinels' Pat Simons fired the shot that truly got the attention of everyone in the rink as he put the Sentinels up 2-0 early in the second frame. 

From there, the momentum clearly shifted, as the sleeping Hendricken giant finally woke up, and in a span of approximately three minutes tied the score at 2, with goals coming off the stick of Andrew Fera...

...and Patrick Creamer.

With the score tied at 2 going into intermission, the sense was once again that this would be a Hawks' victory, probably going away. Once again, however, nobody told the Sentinels. 

The final period was extremely well-played and very aggressive on both sides, as the teams searched for that one play and goal that would most likely permanently tip the momentum their way. Despite the hard play on both sides, that edge never materialized, and the teams went into the five-minute overtime period knotted at 2. 

During the overtime, the Hawks continued to play well, even managing to kill off a pressure-packed two-minute penalty. With 1:43 remaining in overtime, however, the Sentinels' Pat Simons once again dented the net with a backhand flip that just sliced by the Hawks' Matt Kenneally (19 saves on the night), sending the Hawks home for the night and giving the Sentinels a hard-earned 3-2 win.

Overall, it was a very good game. While no one wants to lose a game, the loss might end up having a positive effect, as our guys may have needed that subtle wake-up call. The Hawks will need to shake this one off quickly, as they continue play tonight at Barrington. Game time is 6 pm.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Indoor Track Posts More Impressive Numbers at the Yale Invitaltional

Fresh off solid performances at the Dartmouth Relays last weekend, our indoor track & field guys continued to show why they're one of the top teams in the Northeast by finishing in some of the top spots at this weekend's Yale Invitational. Senior all-stater Colin Tierney (just recently named Gatorade's Rhode Island Cross-Country Runner of the Year)broke a school record in the 3K race...

...and both the 4 X 200 and the 4 X 400 teams placed as well.

The Hawks' hurdlers also finished strong at the Invite.

A good performance from our guys all the way around. The Indoor guys will be back in action this Monday when they take on West Warwick and again on Saturday, when they'll be competing in the Suburban Division Meet.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Hawks' Basketball Podcast for 1/17/14, Parts 1 & 2

Tierney Garners More Honors

Today's sports section in the Providence Journal highlights senior all-state cross-country runner Colin Tierney's being named Gatorade's Rhode Island Cross-Country Runner of the Year.

Let's all give Tierney a well-placed pat on the back, shall we?

The Champs Keep Rollin'...

The Defending state champion Hawks' wrestlers came into the season with every reason to believe that they could far, they're living up to their billing. 

Our wrestlers captured their sixth and seventh straight league victories last night by defeating North Providence 58-6 and Warwick Vets, 62-17. The Hawks dominated the Cougars throughout the entire contest, winning all but two matches; The Hawks later made quick work of the Hurricanes as well. The match of the night was at the 170-pound weight class, when sophomore James Sauro defeated a highly-seeded senior from North providence by regular decision.

The Boesch brothers both contributed to last night's efforts:

The Providence Journal's slideshow from the contests can be seen HERE. The Hawks will be in action twice next week, Wednesday at Woonsocket and Thursday at home against Middletown.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Basketball Splits A Pair, Moves to 5-1

Undefeated at 4-0 out of the gate, along with a pretty strong performance in the Boston Amateur Basketball Classic over the Christmas break....not a bad way to start the season. 

Unfortunately, all good things...and, most times, all strong starts...come to an end. Or, at least, they experience bumps in the road. 

That first bump came for our basketball team this past Monday night, when they fell to a tough and talented North Kingstown team, 61-52. The Hawks hung tough for most of the game, trailing by only one at half, 28-27. It was their difficulty in getting their offense untracked, however, that prevented them from pushing all the way through. That, in addition to a couple of dagger-like three-pointers from the Skippers kept the Hawks chasing from about nine points down for the better part of the second half, which was ultimately the difference. 

EJ Nygren continued to emerge as one of the integral offensive leaders during the early part of the season with 12 points, including two three-pointers. 

The Providence Journal's slideshow from the game can be found HERE. 

Last night was a different story altogether, as the Hawks faced off against the 0-5 Cranston West Falcons at Pepin Gym, a game broadcast live right here on The Network.   The entire second half of the game can be seen in the central UStream viewer at the top of the page, and the first half can be seen here:

Video streaming by Ustream

 After a brief, somewhat sluggish start, the Hawks were pretty much off to the races for the rest of the evening, leading 34-11 at halftime and ultimately winning by 16, 53-37. The Hawks still seem as though they're trying to find themselves offensively, but the nature of the game allowed Coach Gomes to provide some extra minutes for some of his guys off the bench, including Dmitri Rosa (two three-pointers) and Tuks Ademola, who nicely finished off this play in the second half:

So, our guys finish the week with a 5-1 record and remain one of the top teams in Division 1 to this point. As far as scheduling goes, the game that was supposed to be played against Coventry tonight at home has been postponed to Sunday, February 9th, which means that the Hawks will be playing on consecutive Sundays in February - the 9th at home against Coventry, and the 16th at LaSalle. Both games will be broadcast live right here on The Network, so those two Sunday games should be a lot of fun. 

Stay with #hawkssportsnet for all the Hendricken winter sports coverage.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

"Stone & Z" Almost Come to Blows

Well...that was interesting.  Or maybe it was entertaining.  I'm not sure which.

It's Tuesday, so that usually means that it's time for another edition of the "Stone & Z Show." The two venerable anchors of one of The Network's longest-lasting shows were joined by the irrepressible thinker and voice of reason Cam Brennan, but it almost didn't make a difference.

Today's topics were more or less limited to upcoming Championship Weekend (with most of the discussion focused on the Pats-Broncos game) and the ongoing saga that is Alex Rodriguez.  The A-Rod talk led to a larger discussion of steroids, which, ironically, seemed to lead a special type of 'roid rage that gripped both Stone and Z in whether steroids has any place in baseball (and, I suppose, by extension, all of sports).

The last few minutes of the segment that's provided above in the central UStream viewer is...well...entertaining.  It got a bit dicey for a while.

Thank God Cam Brennan was there.

Indoor Track at the Dartmouth Relays

Our indoor track team journeyed up to the Leverone Field House in Hanover, New Hampshire this past weekend to compete in the annual Dartmouth Relays.  The track & field competition at this national event is pretty intense, but our guys acquitted themselves in solid fashion, most notably in Colin Tierney's victory in the two mile, and in the runners' 2nd-place finish in the 4 X 800 Meter Relay and their 5th-place finish in the 4 X 400.  All results are provided below, along with Coach Brennan's overall reaction to the event:

                                              OVERALL TEAM RANKINGS

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Hockey Takes on BC High, Falls Short in OT, 3-2

If this were, say, the mid-to-late 1970's, yesterday's matchup between two of the top hockey teams in the Northeast, Hendricken and Boston College High School, would have been seen as a potential preview of the finals in the New England Championships. Unfortunately, the days when that great tournament of the six state champions are long gone and hard to find, so we have to occasionally satisfy ourselves with a non-league matchup of different regional powers.

Yesterday was no disappointment.
The Providence Journal's slideshow from yesterday's game can be seen HERE.

Our guys showed that they're every bit one of the top few teams in New England, the result of taking a 2-0 lead against Massachusetts state power BC High but eventually falling short in overtime, 3-2. Both of the Hawks' goals came off the stick of sophomore Jamie Armstrong, who netted power-play goals in both the first and second periods. BC High put the finishing touch on the intense contest about four minutes into the five-minute overtime period. As yesterday was a non-league contest, the Hawks remain unbeaten, with an overall record of 7-0-2. They'll be in action again next week at Coventry. Game time is 6:00 pm.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Basketball Grits One Out Over Saints, Goes to 4-0

As mentioned in a post at the very beginning of the basketball season, we offered the opinion that this season may be one of those 'tweener' years for Coach Gomes and his team - very good talent, but talent that may still need the seasoning and the proper amount of time to simmer to perfection. Next season certainly seems very, very bright; however, the talent that the Hawks have on this year's squad makes one wonder just how far they can go as they start to come together.

The past two games are case in point. On Tuesday night, our guys downed Woonsocket by the seemingly convincing score of 60-40, but the score, as they say, does not tell the whole story. That game was more a case of a 'tale of two halves', as the Hawks were generally flat during the first part of the game, so much so that that may have been Coach Gomes's thinking in sending out onto the floor a somewhat different look for the beginning of the second half - Kyle Henseler and Matt Duffie at the guards, Justin Mazzulla and EJ Nygren down low, and Andrew Ciaciarelli manning the middle. The result was the Hawks' taking off and dispatching the Villa Novans going away.

Last night - in a game broadcast live right here on The Network - Coach Gomes apparently decided to try the same mix of five to start the game against St. Ray's, a tough, defensive-minded club that's been holding its opponents to fairly low point totals. At the outset of the game, it seemed that the decision to go with the 'new' starting five might once again pay dividends, as the Hawks came out of the gate fast, as evidenced by the opening play of the game:

Virtually the entire second half of last night's game can be seen above in the central UStream viewer at the top of the page. We unfortunately experienced some wi-fi difficulties at the most inopportune time - the closing minutes of and intense, close game - but the clips of Matt Duffie's three huge free throws down the stretch are included. The entire first half of the contest can be seen here:
Video streaming by Ustream

The Hawks quickly opened a somewhat sizable early lead, and this different-look starting lineup seemed to be working well together; but, just as things seemed to be coming together as hoped for our guys, The Saints settled in and gradually planted their aggressive defense firmly into the Pepin Gym floor and made it very difficult for the Hawks to score as the game unfolded. In fact, their pesky aggressiveness was even on display when they had the ball, as they more often than not gave the Hawks fits on the glass, working hard to get what Coach Gomes would no doubt consider far too many second-chance shots by securing a bunch of offensive rebounds, a problem that plagued the Hawks in the second game of the BABC against Windsor. 

The rebounding issue, along with some tough defense, seemed to resolve itself with Ira Lough, Garfield Coustard, and Will Parmlee coming off the bench, as all three contributed to helping lock down the inside and grab some boards. Lough even contributed several blocked shots.

As the game went on, there were more than a few instances when it seemed that the Hawks would take control of the game. EJ Nygren was hitting his outside shots,

and there were many times when our guys looked good in transition and in following up their own plays:

As mentioned above, though, the Hawks continually had to show the physical and mental toughness to fight off the Saints, and the game came down to Matt Duffie's handling the pressure of three crucial free throws:

So, the Hawks go to 4-0 with the win. After the game, Coach Gomes commented on the win and his thoughts on his team so far:

The Hawks will be in action next week on Monday and Wednesday. On Monday night the Hawks will travel to North Kingstown, and on Wednesday they'll host Cranston West in Pepin Gym, a game that is scheduled to broadcast live, right here on The Network.

Remember to stay with #hawkssportsnet for as much coverage as we can muster for all winter sports.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

WE ADAPT an Interview with Louie Vito

by Daniel Gale


Evan Strong, Amy Purdy and I had the chance to hang out with Louie Vito earlier this season at Dew Tour. He's as humble and enthusiastic as ever. He's particularly enthusiastic about the AAS adaptive crew and the upcoming opportunity at the Paralympic Games for all adaptive snowboarders.

He went on the record for me, well...for you.

Louie V and Amy P - Team Toyota mates
What’s it mean to wear the USA Jersey and how motivated are you to put on the “Stars and Stripes” again?

I’m putting a lot of pressure on myself this year because I know how it feels and I’ve been there. I just finished of the podium, not the result I wanted, but wearing that jersey is like nothing else. I know what’s at stake, I’ve been on the team and I want it more than ever.

What advice would you offer to our Paralympic hopefuls looking to wear the USA colors for the first time?

Do what you normally do, ride how you always ride, keep your eye on the prize but take one event at a time. Don’t loose sight of Sochi but just look at the event that’s in front of you. One event at a time.

Have you ever had to adapt your snowboarding due to injury?

I’ve never had anything dramatic like Travis Pastrana at X Games but injury is always there. My back is jacked!

Is it?
Yeah, I’ve had a torn disc in my back for the last year and a half that just got settled. You always have aches a pains, maybe a torn ligament, a tweaked ankle; usually adrenaline is enough to get me through all of that. Certainly mentally you also have to prepare if you are injured.....I'm always beat up.

This is a historic year for the Paralympics. It’s the first year that it will be televised live and it’s the first year that snowboarding will be in the Paralympic Games. Will you be watching?

Absolutely! I think it’s great. I’m a huge fan of Parlympians and the Paralympics.

Every Paralympian I’ve ever met……my dad and I were just talking about this…..every Paralympian or adaptive athlete I’ve ever met is always smiling and so stoked to be out on the mountain. It’s all about getting out there and doing what you love and adaptive athletes are great examples of that kind of motivation and resilience. They’ve adapted and are making the absolute best of their lives. It inspires me. I love surrounding myself with good people like that who are really living life.

Louie at Dew Tour - Photo
Yeah, and I think it’s great that snowboarding has been accepted into the Paralympics. I think it’s great for snowboarding to have Paralympians now representing the sport. It’s their time to show the world how they do what they do and open minds to what’s possible. Who knows, maybe an injured veteran or a kid who thought snowboarding wasn’t a possibility will see the games this winter and it will change their lives forever.

I don't really know how to put it in words but it definitely affects me to watch and be around.

I know what you mean and I know our athletes and friends will appreciate it. Thanks for the support.

Yeah, no problem. Good luck to your athletes, well all of the athletes and we'll see you in Copper.

Visit to follow Louie's run at Sochi and the US Olympic Team.

Next Question.....

Today we here at The Network unveil what we hope will become one of the intermittent 'staples' of our programming, a show called "Next Question".  Every so often we'll gather a number of our anchors to come into the studio and answer ten random questions, all based upon one particular, big-ticket issue currently at the heart of the sporting world.

We premiere the new format with ten reasonably relevant questions based on the upcoming divisional round of the NFL playoffs.  Cam Brennan, Zach Johnson, Dylan "The Rookie", Remy Morris, and Nick Bianco put their knowledge on the hot seats this afternoon and faced questions ranging from Deion Branch to Peyton Manning and from Andrew Luck to Marvin Lewis.  Virtually the entire show can be viewed in the central UStream screen at the top of the page.  

Strap yourselves's somewhat of a bumpy ride.

Wrestling Takes Down South Kingstown

Having started the season with a 70-12 victory over an undermanned Westerly squad, the Hawks' wrestlers next set their sights on a rugged and physical South Kingstown team. The Rebels came into Pepin Gym looking to make a statement by knocking off the reigning state champion Hawks, and after the first six matches, the Rebels were making good account of themselves as they were still within 9 points of the lead. Our guys then gathered themselves by winning six of the final eight matches, all of the wins coming by pin. The Hawks' strong finish enabled them to win the match by a final tally of 51-19.

Wins by pin came from John Celico, Nick Celico, Jason Davol, Anthony DiMauro, Lewis Stewart, Hunter Boesch, Nick Martino, and Dallas Sauer. The match of the night was at the 132-pound weight class, when Jamie Swanson, who'd been battling sickness all week, bumped up a weight class and came from behind to win over a significantly bigger, 132-pound SK opponent. The wrestlers are in action next on Wednesday in Chariho when they take on the Chargers.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Maselli, Hawks Stop Rams, Remain Unbeaten

Hot off their championship performance in the Mount St. Charles Holiday Face-Off, the hockey Hawks resumed RIIL competition by once again taking the ice against our archrivals, LaSalle, this past Saturday night at Lynch Arena. Once again, our guys left the ice at evening's end with their unbeaten record intact, going to 4-0-1 in league play with their 3-1 win over the Rams.

The defense and goaltending from both teams were outstanding throughout the course of the contest, with Christian Maselli stopping 24 shots for the Hawks and LSA's Tyler Walsh preventing 27 of the attempts on his net. The Hawks' three goals came off the sticks of seniors Jon Finelli and Andrew Fera and freshman Patrick Creamer. Two of the goals were on power plays, and Fera's was highlighted as the #1 play of the week on the Cox High School Sports Show. The Hawks' three goals can be seen here:

The Hawks are in action next against the Barrington Eagles, this Friday night at 8:30 pm at the Smithfield rink.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

2013 Fall All-States

With the winter sports season well underway, it's time that we wrap a bow around the fall season by congratulating our seven student-athletes who were named to their respective first-team All-State squads.  All seven of these guys deserve congratulations for all their hard work and success.  

Well done, gentlemen - your performance as young men, students, and athletes are a credit to your families, yourselves, and your school.