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Department of Communications/
News Bureau
22 Davis Hall, 10 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 0288
Phone: 401-874-2116 Fax: 401-874-7872

Bristol’s Peter Benevides reaches goals on pitch, in classroom

KINGSTON, R.I. -- April 12, 2002 -- Most Rhode Island high school athletes only dream about making the jump to play for a major college team.

Not only has Bristol’s Peter Benevides been able to play for the University of Rhode Island’s nationally-ranked men’s soccer team, he has also had the opportunity to shine on the pitch and in the classroom.

And the good news for coach Ed Bradley and Benevides’ teammates is that although he is earning his bachelor’s degree in accounting in May, he has one more season of eligibility.

Last season as the Rams’ captured the Atlantic 10 Conference’s regular season championship, Benevides played in 15 games, notching four goals and four assists. He had two game-winning goals, and he was named a co-captain for next fall along with teammate Ross Smith. One of his most important tallies came in a 2-1 win over perennial archrival Brown.

"Peter is definitely a success story," Bradley said, adding that Benevides had a shaky academic start at URI along with an injury in his freshman year, forcing him to redshirt.

The dean’s list student is planning to enroll in graduate school at URI.

"It’s a great story about a student-athlete who got hurt, had to redshirt, and then really matured on the field and off in his sophomore year," Bradley said.

This coming fall, Bradley expects to have seven Rhode Islanders out of 28 players. "Peter is in a position to lead the Rhode Island players and the team as a whole. We are in the process of assisting him with that role and to improve his skills as an attacking player.

"He is one of the most pleasurable young men we’ve ever coached," Bradley said. "He is the type of kid you want to bring to your home. He’s got good family values and brings that to the team."

As he prepares for his last days as an undergraduate and last season as a soccer player, Benevides has some advice for high school students.

"Don’t overlook URI and don’t underestimate URI," Benevides said. "We’ve proven how good we are in the field and in the classroom."

And at a reception earlier this year for dean’s list URI student-athletes, he said it is possible to turn around a weak academic record. "I wasn’t doing well my first semester here, but now I have a 3.17 cumulative grade point average.

"But I couldn’t have done it without my teammates, coaches, academic adviser Nancy Kelley and great professors (Joseph) Matoney and (Richard) McIntyre," he said.

When he completes his studies at URI, Benevides hopes to pursue a career in accounting or brokerage work. And he’d also like to coach youngsters. "I love working with kids," he said.
In fact, he will be working with Assistant Coach Jay Primiano’s Goal 4 Rams Soccer Camps as a business adviser/coach in an internship capacity to gain experience. He will be coaching children as well as overseeing business planning and accounting duties.

For Information: Dave Lavallee 401-874-2116

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