Mike Szostak

Sports Blogger

Mike Szostak covered sports for The Providence Journal for 36 years until retiring in 2013. His career highlights included five Winter Olympics from Lake Placid to Nagano and 17 seasons covering the Boston Celtics. His beats  also included tennis, skiing and college sports, especially Brown and URI football.

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Befitting a rivalry that spans 127 games over 94 years, Providence College and the University of Rhode Island put on a show for a packed house of 12,246 at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center Wednesday night. Providence withstood a furious URI rally in the last two minutes of the game, escaped with a 68-60 victory, snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 7-3 on the season. 

URI suffered its fifth consecutive loss to Providence and slipped to 5-3 this season. The Rams made only 12 of 22 free throws, and those misses may have cost them the game.

RIPR FILE

Yellow caution flags fly over Friartown today in the wake of Brown’s stunning 77-67 victory over Providence College Monday night at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. The loss was the third in a row for the Friars after a 6-0 start to the season and left them fewer than 48 hours to figure out what’s wrong before they return to The Dunk Wednesday night or their annual battle with the University of Rhode Island.

The Providence College men's soccer team is heading to East Lansing, Mich., for an NCAA Division I Soccer Championship quarterfinal match on Friday against No. 3 Michigan State. The Friars earned their first trip to the Elite Eight with a 1-0 victory over the University of California Irvine on Sunday night at the Ray Treacy Track and Field Complex. PC improved to 15-4-2, a school record for victories in a season. The 1984 team won 14.

Providence College’s record-breaking soccer team will return to the pitch Sunday night for the third round of the NCAA Men’s Division I Soccer Championship. The Friars will play the University of California Irvine at 7 at the Ray Treacy Track and Field Complex on the PC campus.

Providence (14-4-2) is enjoying its best season and a season of firsts. Big East championship. NCAA Tournament first-round bye. Third-round appearance. Simultaneous Big East Tournament offensive and defensive MVPs. The 14 victories tie the program’s best finish 30 years ago.

URI upsets No. 21 Nebraska and receives votes in the national polls.

PC beats Florida State and Notre Dame in the same tournament and earns a No. 25 ranking in the USA Today national coaches’ poll.

What in the name of James Naismith is going on here?

URI’s long-suffering basketball fans were ecstatic after their Rams edged the Cornhuskers, 66-62, in overtime Saturday before a packed house at the Ryan Center. Sophomore E.C. Matthews led the way with a 26-point, 10-rebound effort that garnered him the Atlantic 10 Conference player of the week honor for the first time.

The University of Rhode Island football team finally celebrated victory Saturday with its 13-7 season-ending victory over Towson at Meade Stadium.  URI also snapped its 15-game losing streak, avoided its second winless season in the last three and gave Jim Fleming his first triumph as head coach in Kingston. The Rams finished their 12th consecutive losing season with a 1-11 record, 1-7 in the Colonial Athletic Association.

The college football regular season in Rhode Island ends Saturday with Bryant wrapping up its most successful season in Division I, Brown trying to salvage a .500 rebuilding campaign and URI hoping to avoid its second winless season in three years.

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