Townies survive, advance in D-II girls' soccer playoffs

Own-goal lifts East Providence past Moses Brown in quarters

Photos by Rich Dionne
Posted 11/18/20

EAST PROVIDENCE — An own-goal in the final five minutes of the game off the head of a Moses Brown player was the difference as the top-seeded East Providence High School girls’ soccer team …

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Townies survive, advance in D-II girls' soccer playoffs

Own-goal lifts East Providence past Moses Brown in quarters

Posted

EAST PROVIDENCE — An own-goal in the final five minutes of the game off the head of a Moses Brown player was the difference as the top-seeded East Providence High School girls’ soccer team survived and advanced in the Division II championship tournament with a 2-1 win over the visiting Quakers Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 17, at Pierce Stadium.

The unbeaten Townies (6-0-1) were once again slated to host the winner of the quarterfinal round game between fourth seeded West Warwick and fifth seeded Prout in the semifinals Thursday afternoon, Nov. 19, at Pierce. For defending D-II champion Moses Brown its season ended after it reached the quarters by edging seventh-seeded Lincoln High, 1-0, in its preliminary round game played Sunday, Nov. 15.

Tuesday, East Providence and the 10th seeded Quakers went scoreless through the opening 40 minutes. The Townies did have several looks at net, but were unable or unwilling to finish, according to head coach Angelo Pizzi.

Things continued in the same fashion for most of the second half until East Providence ended the scoreless run with about 15 minutes remaining in the game. Hailee Manteiga netted the game’s first goal off an assist from Olivia Williams. Within five minutes, however, Moses Brown tied it, setting up a frantic final 10 minutes of action.

The Townies held the possession advantage throughout the final period, continually pushing forward in search of the game-winning goal in regulation. Unfortunately for the visitors, it came off of them, but was actually created by East Providence’s aggressiveness. Manteiga delivered a cross into the 18-yard box intended for teammate Lily Budnick, making a run towards the post. Instead of heading it away from danger, the Moses Brown player deposited it into her own net.

“That was a tough game. Moses Brown is a good, good team. There’s a reason why they won it all last year,” said Pizzi. “They played well, but we left a lot on the field. The girls played exceptionally hard. We were really on the front foot the entire second half. It seemed like only a matter of time before we scored.”

The coach lauded his entire defensive group for their effort Tuesday, in particular the performance of first-year starting keeper Kaylee Davenport, who was credited with nine saves in her playoff debut.

“Kaylee played out of her mind. She was tremendous. She kept us in the game really until we were able to score,” Pizzi added.

The Townies play either Prout, which dropped down into D-II this year following realignment, or West Warwick, whom E.P. played to a 2-all draw two weeks ago, in the semis Thursday. The D-II title game is set for Sunday, Nov. 22, at Johnston High School at 3 p.m.

“Either team is going to be tough. Prout is a former Division I team and we just played West Warwick in a very even game,” Pizzi said of the Townies’ potential semifinal opponents.

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