EPHS defeats Shea in football playoff consolation game

Diaz spurs Townies past Raiders, avenge loss earlier in the fall

Photos by Tyler Maxwell
Posted 11/15/19

PAWTUCKET — In the consolation round of the Division I football playoffs last week, East Providence High School likely gained a modicum of comfort from offering up one of its better efforts …

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EPHS defeats Shea in football playoff consolation game

Diaz spurs Townies past Raiders, avenge loss earlier in the fall

Posted

PAWTUCKET — In the consolation round of the Division I football playoffs last week, East Providence High School likely gained a modicum of comfort from offering up one of its better efforts recently as the Townies defeated host Shea, 32-16, Thursday night, Nov. 14, at Max Read Field.

The victory was the fourth overall in 10 games this fall for East Providence, which was defeated in the D-I quarterfinals two weeks ago by Cranston West, 34-0. The loss leveled the Raiders’ overall record to 5-5. Shea was coming off an upset defeat to Central, 19-0, in the quarters.

In addition to making up for some recent woes, East Providence’s victory over the Raiders avenged a 41-24 loss to Shea in city at Pierce Stadium during the regular season on October 19.

The Raiders’ explosive read-option offense was on display a month ago. Last week, however, the Townies' defense contained Shea’s most potent weapons, quarterback Trentin Curry and runner Jaylen Smith, the latter the All-State track star headed to the University of Rhode Island on scholarship next fall. Curry threw for three of the Raiders’ touchdowns in last month’s game while Smith rushed for the others.

Juan Diaz, as he’s done throughout the season, led the East Providence ground game last week, scoring all four of the Townies' offensive TDs. He also got involved in the passing game, completing an option toss to Jayden DaCruz to set up one of his rushing scores. Conventionally, E.P. QB Justin Pena connected with receivers Alex Rodrigues and Kaleb Almeida to extend scoring drives.

The Townies’ special teams got in on the action as well, with lineman Tyquwan Thompson blocking a punt then picking it up for a scoop-and-score touchdown.

Diaz completed the first East Providence drive of the night with a 12-yard score. Davonte Symonds added the point-after to make it 7-0. The Townies then forced a fumble, leading to a Diaz one-yard run, which made it 13-0 Townies in the opening quarter.

Shea answered with two scores in the second quarter to briefly take a 14-13 lead, but Diaz and E.P, answered with a scoring drive capped off by his six-yard run to put the locals on top 19-14 at intermission.

In the third quarter, Thompson’s punt block and ensuing 28-yard return to touch then a Symonds’ PAT extended the Townies’ lead to 26-14. Diaz later capped the scoring with an eight-yard TD run in the fourth quarter.

East Providence closes out its 2019 season with its traditional Thanksgiving Day game against LaSalle. Kickoff Thursday, Nov. 28, is scheduled for 10 a.m.

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