A quartet of players with connections to South County are suiting up for the men’s soccer team at the University of Rhode Island this fall, and while they may be playing supporting roles, all have helped the Rams succeed thus far.
Leading the way is North Kingstown product Evan Gaudreau, who is the only player of the group to have cracked the starting lineup, doing so in Rhody’s season opener, a 2-0 decision over Boston University on Aug. 24.
The fifth-year senior has recorded three shots this fall, while also notching an assist on the second goal of URI’s 4-0 blanking of Bryant three days later, setting up Stavros Zarokostas with 32 seconds left in the opening half.
While Gaudreau is nearing the end of his collegiate career, fellow former Skipper Zach Cook is just getting started, having appeared eight times off the bench for the Rams, to date.
In his time on the pitch, the freshman attacker has managed to get three shots off, with his only effort on goal coming on Sept. 5 versus Holy Cross.
The other side of the North-South divide is also well-represented, with a pair of ex-Rebels on the roster this fall, headlined by Johnny Sherman.
Of the South County four, he is the only player to have scored a goal this season, finding the back of the net in the 89th minute against Bryant to wrap up the aforementioned shutout of the Bulldogs.
Despite getting his name on the scoresheet, Sherman has not made an appearance since early September, after coming on as a substitute in each of URI’s first four matches of the season.
Rounding out the contingent alongside Sherman is sophomore netminder J.T. Gibbons, who has yet to make an appearance between the sticks this fall for the Rams.
The foundation for success for the Rhody eleven this fall has come on the back of a strong defense, which did not allow a goal in the team’s first six games of the season as the Rams cracked a national top 25 for the first time in four years.
After falling from the ranks of the unbeaten via defeats to Brown and Fordham at the end of September, URI returned to winning ways last week with identical 3-1 victories over Saint Louis and St. Bonaventure to up its mark to 8-2 on the season.
The Rams will be looking to keep the momentum going this week by welcoming Massachusetts and Dayton to Kingston.
NK grad Thomas honored again by MASCAC
North Kingstown alumna Brandee Thomas has established a personal stranglehold on the Massachusetts Collegiate Athletic Conference’s rookie of the week award, picking up the honor on Monday for the sixth time this season.
The ex-Skipper, who is now wearing the colors of Framingham State, recorded double-digit kills in straight-set victories over Mount Holyoke on Oct. 2 and Suffolk two days later, while scoring a game high 15.5 points against the latter.
Partially on the strength of those performances, Thomas is now leading the MASCAC with 215 kills and is second in total points with 223.5, four off the conference lead.