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NARRAGANSETTâ€”Finding its way in Division II was never going to be easy for the Narragansett boys lacrosse team.
After making it to the Division III Championship last season the Mariners moved up to D-II South in a subdivision that features last yearâ€™s finals participants in East Greenwich and South Kingstown.
â€śWeâ€™re looking up hill, thereâ€™s no doubt about it,â€ť Narragansett coach Mark Chafee said. â€śStepping up a division this year and we have to
be really on our game to compete because weâ€™re playing against teams that are bigger, faster and stronger.â€ť
This past Thursday â€™Gansett got a good idea of just how far it has to go.
The Mariners (0-3, 0-3 D-II South) suffered a 12-0 defeat to the two-time defending champ Avengers (4-2, 4-0 D-II South) in a game that for a time was much closer than the final score indicated.
â€śI didnâ€™t think we played particularly well,â€ť Chafee said. â€śI donâ€™t think theyâ€™re as good as the score indicated and I donâ€™t think weâ€™re that bad but theyâ€™re definitely a talented and athletic group.
â€śThe kids are smart, they recognize that this is a good team [we played] and we just keep going, continue to have fun and try and get better.â€ť
Early on Narragansett held its own and after the first quarter was still in striking distance trailing 3-0.
The Mariners had their chances to draw closer early in the second but then Colin Waitkun â€“ who had a goal in the first â€“ took over.
Waitkun scored with 3:49 remaining in the second and then added a third a little less than 90 seconds later off an Alex White assist.
Senior James Payette then scored off a Sam Feinberg assist with seven seconds to go until the break to give the Avs a commanding 6-0 advantage.
By the fourth the game was completely in EGâ€™s control as it tacked on five more in the third quarter to put the game away.
Even with the lopsided victory though, Avsâ€™ coach Brian Trapani stills sees room for improvement from his team.
â€śWe werenâ€™t executing the team offense like we had hoped but it was the end of a long week,â€ť he said. â€śWe could have done better.
â€śI know the scoreboard said we did pretty good but when you think about execution and passing and catching and basic stuff â€“ shooting â€“ we didnâ€™t do as good as we had hoped.
â€śâ€¦We know the target is on our back and we know we need to keep getting better and better. The other teams are going to keep getting better and better and theyâ€™re not going to stop.â€ť
Senior Jack Trutza â€“ who had three saves â€“ earned the shutout for EG, while his counterpart Zach Bosco notched 12 saves for the Mariners.
As for the Avengers, they suffered a 10-9 loss in double overtime in a non-league game with Division-I North Kingstown Monday and will return to league play today at 6:30 p.m. when they travel to take on Cumberland.