Mass. College Football: Five Games To Watch This Weekend

By NoontimeSports.com 

With the eighth week of the college football season set to begin this evening, it’s now time to unveil our five games to watch this weekend.

Salve Regina at Curry College (Friday, Oct. 18 @ 7 p.m.): The Colonels three-game skid to commence the season is a thing of the past as Skip Bandini’s squad is on a two-game winning streak.

Keep an eye on Curry’s Jordan Shairs, who has rushed for 316 yards on 50 carries and two scores. Shairs also leads the Colonels’ receiving core with 30 grabs and five touchdowns.

Quarterback Kevin Fruwirth is averaging two touchdowns per contest and 201.2 yards per game, while teammate Stanley Sainterlien leads the defense with 27 total tackles.

Last season, Colonels fell to the Seahawks, 37-33, thanks to a four-yard plunge by Kenneth Woods with 58 seconds remaining in regulation.

Curry’s last win against Salve Regina occurred on their home turf in 2009 when the Colonels claimed a 19-7 victory.

No. 25 Harvard University vs. Lafayette (Saturday, Oct. 19 @ 1 p.m.): The Crimson are coming off their second Ivy League victory of the season as Harvard defeated Cornell in Ithaca last weekend, 34-24. This weekend, they’ll take on the Leopards, who enter the contest 1-4 overall.

Harvard leads the all-time series with 13 wins. The Crimson defeated the Leopards in 2010 and 2011, but did not face Lafayette last season.

Entering the game, Harvard’s David Mothander, the team’s kicker, is tied for first in the nation in field-goal percentage (1.000), while quarterback Conner Hempel ranks third in passing efficiency (174.8), sixth in completions (.679) and eighth in passing yards per completion (14.6).

Harvard’s four straight wins to start the year have helped them not only land a spot on the FCS Coaches Poll, but also receive 93 votes in the Sports Network poll. A win against Lafayette would push their overall mark to 5-0, which would match their start from a year ago.

Stonehill College at New Haven (Saturday, Oct. 19 @ 1 p.m.): After rallying to their fourth overall and conference victory against Southern Connecticut, Robert Talley’s squad will attempt to keep their momentum going when they travel to New Haven to face the first place Chargers.

Brian Harrington was named this week’s Northeast-10 Conference Defensive Player of the Week for the fourth time this season following his sixth straight double-figure tackle performance against the Owls. Harrington concluded the game with 16 total tackles, 11 solo stops and recovered a fumble. Teammate Andrew Kibarian was named the Rookie of the Week by registering a season-high matching eight total tackles, six solo and two tackles for a loss of five yards.

New Haven enters the contest on a five-game winning streak and is averaging 466.7 yards per game on offense.

Last season, New Haven’s Jason Thompson caught two fourth quarter touchdowns to help the Chargers rally past the Skyhawks in a game televised live on CBS Sports Network.

Tufts University at Williams College (Saturday, Oct. 19 @ 1:30 p.m.): According to the game notes on Williams College’s athletic website, both teams first met in 1885, and since that date, the Ephs are 53-22-7 all-time against the Jumbos, which includes four straight wins dating back to the 2009 season.

Aaron Kelton, who is in his fourth season with the Ephs, is 3-0 all-time vs. Tufts. He led his Ephs to a 25-7 victory last year in Medford, thanks to an impressive performance by his defense that generated five turnovers.

Keep an eye on Tufts’ Sean Harrington, who finished last week’s outing tied for the game-high in tackles with 11, which included four tackles for a loss. On the other side, Williams’ signal caller, Adam Marske, is coming off a 276 yard passing performance against Middlebury where he tossed one touchdown and rushed for 21 yards on six carries.

Bentley University vs. American International (Saturday, Oct. 19 @ 2 p.m.): Coming off an impressive performance against Pace, Bentley will look to extend their current winning streak against a very competitive AIC squad, which also enters the game on a two-game winning streak.

According to this week’s game preview, AIC and Bentley have met nine times since the start of the 2005 season with each squad prevailing on their home turf. The Yellow Jackets defeated the Falcons, 27-23, in Springfield last season, while Bentley topped AIC in Waltham a year earlier, 28-10.

Bentley’s Jet Kollie totaled 266 yards of total offense last week, which included 181 yards on the ground, while quarterback Danny Guadagnoli registered his second four-touchdown game of the season.

AIC is the number one rushing team in the conference. The Yellow Jackets are averaging 236.5 yards per contest, and have rushed for at least 200 yards in five of their six games this season.

Quarterback Kevin Arduino, who was the former Northeast-10 Conference Rookie of the Year, has recorded 4,772 passing yards and 38 touchdowns. He’s also rushed for roughly 1,700 yards and 19 touchdowns.

Mass. College Football: Week Seven Honor Roll

By NoontimeSports.com 

With another weekend of college football in the books, it is time to unveil this week’s Noontime Sports Honor Roll.

A.J. Doyle (Massachusetts) – The sophomore gunslinger tossed season-bests two touchdowns and 249 passing yards to lead the Minutemen to their first victory of the season.

Rob Blanchflower (Massachusetts) – The senior tight end recorded a season-best 98 yards receiving, as well as registered his first score of the Minutemen’s current campaign against Miami (Ohio).

Peter Pujals (Holy Cross) – The first-year quarterback finished Saturday’s game with six touchdowns, three on the ground and three through the air, as the Crusaders cruised to their third victory of the season against Bucknell. Pujals completed 19-of-29 passes for 298 yards and rushed for 80 yards on 13 carries.

Jet Kollie (Bentley) – The junior running back scored two touchdowns and amassed 266 all-purpose yards against Pace on Saturday in just three quarters. Kollie rushed for 181 yards on 12 carries to break the school record for average gain per rush.

Danny Guadagnoli (Bentley) – The senior quarterback tossed four touchdowns and finished with 323 yards of total offense in three quarters of Saturday’s game. He averaged 12.4 yards per play.

Jeff Hill (Bentley) – The junior wide receiver hauled in two touchdowns in Bentley’s 56-13 win against Pace. Hill finished with four receptions for 108 yards, and was on the receiving end of a 60-yard scoring strike on the Falcons’ first play of the game.

Gordon McLeod (Stonehill) – The sophomore wide receiver hauled in a career-high 109 receiving yards on five catches to help the Skyhawks rally to victory against Southern Connecticut.

Brian Harrington (Stonehill) – The junior linebacker posted his sixth straight double-figure effort against Southern Connecticut with a game-high 16 total tackles, 11 solo stops, along with a fumble recovery.

Andrew Kibarian (Stonehill) – The first-year defensive end recorded a season-high matching eight tackles, six solo, as well as a season-best two tackles for a loss of five yards.

Matt Pedone (Assumption) – The sophomore halfback registered 131 yards of total offense and two scores on Friday against St. A’s. Pedone rushed for 102 yards on 13 carries and recorded two catches for 29 yards.

Joe Clancy (Merrimack) – The senior quarterback completed 51-of-71 passes for 538 yards and three touchdowns in Merrimack’s loss to New Haven.

Jere Brown (Merrimack) – The sophomore wide receiver hauled in a game-best 13 catches for 173 yards and one touchdown.

Melquan Pinkney (Mt. Ida) – The first-year halfback registered 129-yard on 17 carries and two rushing touchdowns in Mount Ida’s first conference win against Castleton State.

Patrick McGrath (Framingham State) – The senior linebacker recorded 11 total stops against Westfield State, two solo tackles, along with one-and-a-half tackles for a loss of two yards.

Cullen Hanna (UMass Dartmouth) – The first-year signal caller recorded season-highs of 179 yards passing and three touchdowns against Bridgewater State.

Abiola Aborishade (UMass Dartmouth) – The sophomore wide receiver, who caught the game-winning touchdown, registered a game-high 10 catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

Derek Tarpey (UMass Dartmouth) – The sophomore linebacker finished with 22 total tackles, which was a career-high, 14 solo stops, five tackles for a loss, two forced fumbles and one sack.

Stefan Gustafson (Mass. Maritime) – The senior running back rushed for career-high 235 yards on 35 carries and tied school record with four rushing touchdowns (including 87 yarder, third longest in school history) in Buccaneers’ wild 54-53 victory at Western Connecticut.

Mike Stanton (Mass. Maritime) – The senior quarterback completed 22-of-33 passes for 349 yards and two scores in Bucs’ 54-53 win at Western Connecticut.  Stanton set up the game-winning score in closing minutes with 51-yard connection.

Jordan Shairs (Curry) – The junior running back recorded 194 yards of total offense as he rushed for 161 yards on 17 carries for one score, as well as hauled in five catches for 33 yards and one touchdown in the Colonels’ second conference win against Coast Guard.

Kevin Cook (Western New England) – The junior halfback finished Saturday’s game against Salve Regina with 127 yards on 25 carries with one touchdown.

Chris Tamasi (Amherst) – The junior inside linebacker recorded six solo stops, three tackles for a loss of 13 yards, a fumble recovery and one pass break-up in his team’s 14-10 win against Colby College.

James Howe (Williams) – The sophomore defensive lineman finished Saturday’s game against Middlebury with eight total tackles, five solo stops, two-and-a-half tackles for a loss and a half a sack.

Mass. College Football: Week Seven Teams Of The Week

By NoontimeSports.com 

Another weekend of college football has come to an end. And with the seventh week in the books it is time to announce this week’s Noontime Sports Teams of the Week.

Division 1 – Massachusetts: The monkey is finally off their backs. The Minutemen, who entered Saturday’s contest on a six-game losing skid, relied on a second half touchdown pass from A.J. Doyle and a 25-yard field goal by Blake Lucas to seal their first victory of the season. Doyle had his best game, tossing two touchdowns, the most he’s recorded in a game this season, and a season-best 249 passing yards.

UMass finished the contest with 23 first downs and 376 yards of total offense. The Minutemen also won the time of possession battle as they held the ball for 34:28.

Charley Molnar’s squad returns to the gridiron next week when they travel to Buffalo. Last season, the Bulls topped the Minutemen at Gillette Stadium, 29-19.

Division 2 – Stonehill College: Quarterback Logan Meyer tossed two of his three touchdowns in the second half, as he connected with Colin Markus and Paul Piccirillo, while Steve Grzywacz kicked a 38-yard field goal as the Skyhawks outscored the Owls, 16-0, during the final two frames en route to a 23-21 victory against Southern Connecticut.

Stonehill’s Brian Harrington finished another game this season with more than 10 total tackles as he registered 16, 11 solo, while teammate Andrew Kibarian recorded eight total tackles, six solo and two tackles for a loss.

Gordon McLeod hauled in five receptions for a career-high 109 yards, while Nate Robitaille finished with 10 catches for 85 yards.

The Skyhawks will be on the road again next weekend as they travel to New Haven for a 1 p.m. kickoff.

Division 3 – UMass Dartmouth: For the first time since 2008, the Corsairs defeated the Bears of Bridgewater State on Friday in a wild conference clash. UMass Dartmouth rallied from a 22-point deficit to seal the win.

DaVon Fuller helped his team earn their second win of the season when he intercepted Bridgewater State’s Mike McCarthy on his team’s two-yard line with seven seconds remaining in regulation.

Quarterback Cullen Hanna recorded season-highs of 179 yards passing and three touchdowns. He also rushed for 26 yards and one score on six carries. Wide receiver Abiola Aborishade, who caught the game-winning touchdown, registered a game-high 10 catches for 111 yards, while running back Charles Ruffin produced his first 100-yard rushing game with 101 yards on the ground.

Defensively, UMass Dartmouth was led by Derek Tarpey, who finished with 22 stops, which was a career-high, 14 solo tackles, five tackles for a loss, two forced fumbles and one sack.

The Corsairs, who’re now 2-3 overall and 2-2 in their conference will be back on their home field Saturday when they host Worcester State for a 12 p.m. contest.