Turano, Westerly rout Stonington, 61-0
Westerly — There came a moment in the first half Thursday at Sal Augeri Field when the cold but in-full-throat Dawg Pound, otherwise known as Westerly High School’s student section, advised their time-honored rivals from across the border of something quite obvious to everyone else watching.
“You can’t stop us,” they chanted in the direction of Stonington, on this, the 100th time the schools met on Thanksgiving Day.
Hard to argue that one, really, given the day’s final score:
Westerly 61, Stonington 0.
It was the lone football game played in the region on the most traditional day of all for high school football. The sunny-but-cold weather — temperatures were in the high teens at kickoff — prompted other schools to move their games to Wednesday. Despite the weather, however, the game drew a sizeable crowd, filling both sets of bleachers.
The clock ran for the entire fourth period, perhaps the only mercy shown the Bears all day, during what was a difficult — but perhaps educational — season.
“This game,” Stonington coach A.J. Massengale said, “is not a reflection of these kids.”
Maybe it was a reflection of the 2018 Bulldogs, however. Westerly finished 9-2, showing no scars from their playoff defeat in the state semifinals to Woonsocket two weeks ago. Rhode island’s playoffs concluded last weekend, thus making Thanksgiving for pride and tradition, rather than playoff implications.
This was a season they’ll remember fondly in the land of Soupy.
Perhaps the lone disappointment Thursday came courtesy of Father Time, who will take graduating senior Tristan Turano. In his final game on his home field, Turano ran for 234 yards and five touchdowns, eclipsing the 4,000-yard mark in his career.
Turano scored on runs of 20, 3, 40, 94 and 27 yards.
He and teammate Josh Lacerte (also scored a touchdown) took home most of the postgame awards.
Westerly led 41-0 at halftime.
“It was a mismatch this year,” Massengale said. “Plain and simple.”
The Bears, who enjoyed a successful fall sports season (the soccer and field hockey teams won varying levels of league titles or ran deep into their state tournament) did not find the same success in football. Stonington finished 1-9, defeating only Waterford.
That, however, may change soon. Massengale dressed 23 sophomores. He was rather devout in his postgame comments that change is a comin.’
“We’re in a very good place moving forward,” he said. “We have great kids that work hard. This year’s seniors set a great example. That’s going to carry on.”
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