CRANSTON — Ill-timed mistakes and an explosive opponent doomed the East Providence High School football team in its most recent Division I foray as the Townies remained winless after suffering a 48-12 loss to host Cranston East Friday night, Oct. 11, at Cranston Stadium.
The Thunderbolts never trailed following three first quarter scores. The hosts tacked on two more touchdowns before the intermission to build a commanding 34-0 edge by halftime. East Providence finally broke through in the second half, scoring both of its touchdowns. Though it was far too little and far too late to make the game competitive.
Senior fullback Austin Baptista accounted for one of the Townies’ touchdowns, bulling his way into the end zone from three yards out. Justin Johnson had the other TD for the locals, scoring from a yard away. The loss left East Providence with a 0-3 record in the D-I standings. Cranston East leveled its early season D-I mark to 1-1.
The Thunderbolts struck four times through the air for scores as quarterback Alex Corvese tossed touchdowns of 16, 22, 55 and 50 yards in length. He also kept it once for a three-yard TD. Wideout Jimmy Saab was on the receiving end of two scoring plays, 16 and 22 yards. Fellow end Marvin Beauvais caught the 50-yard completion and also likely delivered the back-breaking blow of the contest with his 70-yard punt return late in the first half.
For the Townies, who for the fourth time in five full outings this fall accrued over 300 yards of total offense, the setback mirrored all their others to date so far. East Providence moved the ball well offensively, but made key errors in the red zone. Defensively, the locals couldn’t contain the skill players from the opposition. And special teams allowed at least one “big” play, Friday Beauvais’ punt return.
East Providence’s first miscue of note was somewhat debatable. Trailing 14-0 and having driven to the Thunderbolts’ one, Baptista attempted to burrow his way through the pile into the end zone. Stymied, he extended the ball towards the goal line where a Cranston East defender punched it free. The referees deemed the play a fumble, which the hosts recovered to snuff out the threat.
Later and once more deep into Thunderbolts’ territory inside the 20, a Townies’ march was halted by a 15-yard personal foul penalty. The locals were unable to regroup and missed out on the scoring chance. Beauvais’ punt return put an exclamation mark on East Providence’s first half woes.
The Townies (0-5 overall) step away from D-I action for the final time this fall when they face Division II Westerly on the road Saturday night, Oct. 19, at 7 p.m. at Stonington High just over the border in Connecticut. The Bulldogs are utilizing the home field of their historic rivals due to renovations at the Westerly High complex.