Tag Archives: Catholic University

The Early Preseason Outlook: Norwich University Cadets

Norwich Cadets

By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

Our ‘Early Preseason Outlook’ coverage resumes with a closer look at the Norwich University Cadets, who begin their season on Saturday, September 7th when they visit Salve Regina University for a 12 p.m. kick-off.

The Cadets’ 2018 Season: Norwich finished with a 3-7 record last year – they scored wins against Castleton University (40-0), Maine Maritime Academy (15-7) and Catholic University (31-0) before ending their season with a difficult 20-17 setback to WPI.

Despite ending the 2018 season with just three wins, the Cadets saw some players on both sides of the ball truly step-up as the season progressed, especially quarterback Matt Dunn, who finished the season with 12 touchdown passes and 1,933 passing yards.

Dunn’s best game was against Coast Guard Academy when he tossed a career and season-high four touchdowns in a 38-35 setback.

Taj-Calvin Johnson and Lavontae Decius enjoyed impressive first seasons, combining for five touchdown receptions and 1,055 receiving yards. Additionally, Manni Romero became the go-to target for Dunn, hauling in a team-high seven touchdowns, while finishing his second season with 35 catches for 566 yards.

Clyde Tamburro connected on 22 of 24 extra points while drilling 8 of 14 field goals for 46 points. He will certainly be a player to watch this fall as he attempts to continue his progression as a special teamer.

Finally, Tavares Ward and Brasean Stewart highlighted the Cadets defense by recording 61.0 and 57.0 total tackles, respectively. Additionally, Martin Bailey added 54.0 total tackles, including 3.5 tackles for a loss of 14 yards and one sack for a six-yard loss.

The 2019 Outlook: Despite graduating 11 student-athletes from last year’s squad, Norwich appears to be a team to keep an eye on this fall, especially with so many juniors and sophomores returning.

The juniors and sophomores will certainly be the reason why the Cadets will be competitive this fall, both in and out of conference play.

Norwich’s defense returns a slew of seniors, including Ward, Steward, and Bailey, but does welcome back junior Christopher Ward (defensive line) and sophomore Isaiah Williams (Outside Linebacker). Both student-athletes should help the veterans – juniors and seniors – on defense this season.

While Dunn will have some familiar targets from a year ago, fans should also keep an eye on halfbacks Aaron Conner and Connor Bourque. Both running backs will look to cap their senior seasons with the Maroon and Gold with a winning record. Additionally, the duo should combine for 10 touchdowns this season, too.

Jacob Barr also returns for his senior season and will be a player to watch on the Norwich offensive line. Barr competed in 10 games last season after appearing in just six one year earlier and should receive some help from Tom Emery, who appeared in nine games last season a first-year.

Norwich’s Schedule: The month of September is not an easy one for the Cadets, who will face Salve Regina in week one followed by St. Lawrence University in week two and Coast Guard Academy in week three. Norwich will cap the opening month with a visit to Castleton.

Norwich will visit Springfield College in the first week of October before returning home for contests against Maine Maritime Academy and Merchant Marine.

November features three contests, including an end of season match-up with the Engineers of WPI.

Players to Watch: Matt Dunn (Quarterback/Rockland, Mass.), Aaron Conner (Running Back/Daytona Beach, Fla.), Connor Bourque (Halfback/Goffstown, N.H.), Taj-Calvin Johnson (Wide Receiver/Avenel, N.J.), Manni Romero (Wide Receiver/Phillipsburg, N.J.), Lavontae Decius (Wide Reciever/North Lauderdale, Fla.), Jacob Barr (Offensive Line/Walpole, Mass.), Tom Emery (Offensive Line/St. Johnsbury, Vt.), Clyde Tamburro (Kicker/Elizabethtown, Pa.), Tavares Ward (Defensive Back/Sunrise, Fla.), Brasean Stewart (Defensive Back/Bronx, N.Y.), and Martin Bailey (Defensive Line/Bedford Corners, N.Y.).


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The Early Preseason Outlook: MIT Engineers

MIT Engineers

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Our ‘Early Preseason Outlook’ coverage continues with a closer look at the MIT Engineers, who will look to capture their second-straight New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) crown this fall.

MIT kicks-offs its 2019 slate on Saturday, September 7th, 2019 when they host Carnegie Mellon at 12 p.m.

The Engineers’ 2018 Season: MIT enjoyed a very successful 2018 campaign by capturing its first-ever NEWMAC championship while making its second appearance in program history in the NCAA Tournament.

Yet, despite ending its season with a first-round setback to Johns Hopkins University, coach Brian Bubna‘s squad proved they can win games with both its offense and defense, as well as its special teams, too.

MIT pitched three shutouts last season, including a pair in October against Coast Guard Academy (13-0) and Maine Maritime Academy (35-0), while limiting Springfield College to just seven points in their regular-season finale.

Quarterback Udgam Goyal enjoyed one of his best seasons under center, tossing a career-high 18 touchdowns, including three to Eddy Garcia-Montes, who led the receiving core with 45 receptions.

Keithen Shepard enjoyed a very successful second season with the Engineers by catching a career-high 39 receptions for 513 yards and six touchdowns. Shepard will certainly be a player to watch this season – it’s possible he could be the team’s go-to receiver.

The 2019 Outlook: MIT graduated 13 student-athletes from last year’s team, including Udgam Goyal, who was the team’s primary quarterback for the past three seasons, and their top wide-out Eddy Garcia-Montes. Additionally, the Engineers bid farewell to halfback/wide receiver Miguel Wagner, linebacker Andrew DeNucci and defensive back Mitch Maisel.

Replacing all five student-athletes, along with other members of the Class of 2019 won’t be an easy task for Buban and his staff, but they do return some key pieces from last year’s squad, including halfback John Robertson, wide receiver Eric Bradford, and linebacker Sam Cantrell.

The Engineers did graduate a pair of offensive linemen but do return Will Roberts, who will be the anchor of MIT’s line this fall. The Sacramento, California native appeared in 11 contest last season and was named NEWMAC First-Team All-Conference.

The biggest question facing the Engineers is can they repeat their success from a year ago? We’ll find out once a new season of MIT football commences in a few weeks.

MIT’s Schedule: The Engineers commence their title defense with a home date against Carnegie Mellon before embarking on a three-game road trip, beginning Saturday, September 21st at Becker College. MIT will then visit Catholic University before heading to U.S. Merchant Marine in early October.

The schedule gets more challenging in late October when MIT visits Coast Guard before entertaining Norwich University and WPI in early November.

A mid-to-late November clash with Springfield could possibly determine the conference’s representative in the NCAA Tournament.

Players to Watch: John Robertson (Halfback/Brentwood, Tenn.), Keithen Shepard (Wide Receiver/Vancouver, Wash.), Eric Bradford (Wide Receiver/Dublin, Ohio), Jack Montinaro (Wide Receiver/Riverside, Conn.), Will Roberts (Offensive Line/Sacramento, Calif.), Mark Wright (Kicker/Fort Worth, Texas), Sam Cantrell (Linebacker/Seattle, Wash.), Tyler Ray (Defensive Back/Suwanee, Ga.), Ben Wolz (Defensive Line/College Station, Texas), and AJ Iversen (Defensive Back/Kansas City, Mo.).


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The Early Preseason Outlook: Maine Maritime Mariners

Maine Maritime Mariners

By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

Our ‘Early Preseason Outlook’ coverage rolls on with a closer look at the Maine Maritime Academy Mariners, who begin their season on Saturday, September 7th when they visit Maritime (N.Y.) for a 12 p.m. kick-off.

The Mariners’ 2018 Season: Despite finishing 0-9 last fall, the Mariners seemed to play their best football late in the season, especially against Coast Guard AcademyNorwich University and Catholic University. Those three games can be used as valuable teaching tools, but also motivation for the Blue and Gold heading into the upcoming season.

Terrell Thomas enjoyed a very successful first season with the Mariners, leading the defense in total tackles (83.0), solo stops (47), and tackles per game (11.9). The Auburn, Maine native also recorded 2.5 tackles for a loss and three pass break-ups en route to being named the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Co-Rookie of the Year.

On offense, Dominic Casale enjoyed a successful second season by leading the receiving core with 550 receiving yards on 41 grabs and seven touchdowns. Casale’s 550 receiving yards were the most recorded by any Mariner wide receiver in a single-season since Chris Pelletier registered 567 yards on 22 grabs in 1997.

Additionally, Casale’s seven touchdowns were the most recorded by a wide-out since John Guss in 1989.

The 2019 Outlook: The Mariners graduated five seniors from their 2018 squad, including outside linebacker Derek Breunig, and offensive linemen Kyle Miller and Jacob Doyon, but do return Casale and Thomas, who will certainly be the focal point of the team’s offense and defense, respectively.

Additionally, Maine Maritime returns a slew of offensive linemen, including Mahlon Glidden and Josh Reed, along with quarterbacks Bailey Sawyer and Zackery Brannon.

Halfback Cooper Chiasson returns for his second season after leading the unit in rushing last fall, while Mason Kaserman should be a go-to target for both Sawyer and Brannon.

While Thomas will be a linebacker to watch on defense, the same could be said for defensive back Maxwell Horton, who finished the season with 67.0 total tackles, including 5.5 solo stops for a loss of 15. Additionally, Horton was one of four defenders to record two interceptions.

Fans of the Mariners should also keep their eyes on inside linebacker Justin Pinard, who finished fourth on the team in total tackles with 61.0. He also recorded 2.5 tackles for a loss of three yards, while registering one pass break-up.

Maine Maritime’s Schedule: The first month of the season won’t be an easy one for the Mariners, who will travel to Plymouth State after visiting Maritime (N.Y.) before hosting Massachusetts Maritime Academy for the 47th Annual Admiral’s Cup. One week after entertaining the Buccaneers, the Mariners will welcome Merchant Marine for an important week four match-up.

Trips to MIT and WPI highlight the month of October, along with a home date with Coast Guard Academy.

The Mariners will end their season with back-to-back home games against Catholic and Springfield College.

Players to Watch: Dominic Casale (Wide Receiver/Freeport, Maine), Terrell Thomas (Outside Linebacker/Auburn, Maine), Mahlon Glidden (Offensive Lineman/Scarborough, Maine), Maxwell Horton (Defensive Back/Kicker/Eliot, Maine), and Justin Pinard (Inside Linebacker/New Boston, N.H.).


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D3 Lacrosse Notebook: What We Learned From The Women’s Tournament

NS Lacrosse Notebook

By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

The first weekend of the NCAA Division III women’s lacrosse tournament is in the books, which means its time to focus our attention on next weekend’s third round and quarterfinals.

Similar to our men’s lacrosse notebook from yesterday, here are a few thoughts and takeaways from the opening weekend, which saw a few New England teams advance to the third round.

Keep your eyes on Tufts University: The Jumbos recorded their second shutout of the season on Sunday with an 18-0 win over Plymouth State to bump their overall mark to 17-2.

Tufts has become one of my teams to watch in this spring, especially after an impressive regular season, which saw the Powder Blue and White lose just once before falling to Middlebury College in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) championship.

The Jumbos have what it takes to advance to championship weekend, but face a tough task this Saturday against a talented TCNJ squad, which outlasted Colby College on Sunday in its second-round match-up.

TCNJ lost to Tufts earlier this season but rebounded with some important New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) wins, including a conference championship victory against Rowan University.

The Lions advanced to the semifinals last season but fell to Middlebury Colleg after beating Bowdoin CollegeFranklin & Marshall, and William Smith in the 2018 NCAA Tournament.

If the Jumbos are going to beat the Lions and advance to the sectional finals, they will need a big performance from Emily Games (67 points on 52 goals and 15 assists) and Colette Smith (54 points on 40 goals and 14 assists).

Smith netted the clincher late in the second half in Tufts’ initial meeting with TCNJ, which helped the Jumbos squeak out an exciting 8-7 victory.

If Tufts defeats the Lions on Saturday, they will then need to duplicate their performance against the winner of St. John Fisher versus York College (Pa.).

Middlebury to meet Bowdoin in Third Round: After falling to Bates College in its season-opener, the Panthers of Middlebury have ripped off 18-straight wins, including a 22-3 second-round win over Johnson & Wales.

Middlebury will attempt to stretch its winning streak to 19 when they host Bowdoin College on Saturday.

Similar to Middlebury, the Polar Bear secured a first-round bye and defeated William Smith, 13-5, thanks to six points (five goals and one assist) from Fiona Bundy and five points (four goals and one assist) by Katie Miller.

Bowdoin’s Erin Morrissey and Aaliyah Biondo combined for seven saves on 12 shots in the team’s 10th win over the Herons.

Earlier this season, the Panthers outlasted the Polar Bears, 21-18, so don’t expect Middlebury to run away from Bowdoin on Saturday.

Middlebury outscored Bowdoin, 12-8, in the opening session of their lone match-up in March, while the Polar Bears outscored the Panthers in the second half, 10-9. Bowdoin led Middlebury, 8-3, in the first half, but surrendered a nine-goal run that provided the visitors with a four-goal lead at the break.

Jane Earley helped Middlebury beat Bowdoin by netting a team-high five goals, so she will certainly be needed again in this match-up, especially if the Panthers would like to advance to Sunday’s sectional final.

The winner of Bowdoin-Middlebury will advance to semifinals – I think they both can defeat Illinois Wesleyan or Franklin & Marshall.

Which New England team will advance to the national semifinals?

I still believe Tufts has a chance to compete for a national crown over Memorial Day Weekend, but they must get past TCNJ, which will certainly be a tough test for the Powder Blue and White.

Bowdoin or Middlebury certainly have what it takes to advance to the semifinals, too – I would say Middlebury first, Bowdoin second – but I wouldn’t overlook Wesleyan University, as well.

Wesleyan, however, faces a really challenging path to the semifinals as they would need to beat Washington & Lee on Saturday followed by most likely Gettysburg College, which is scheduled to face Denison University in the third round.

Similar to Tufts, I have enjoyed following Wesleyan this spring, so if they somehow find a way to the semifinals, then I think they can make it to the championship round.

Amherst College may have an easier path to the semifinals, but they will need to play their best lacrosse against Catholic University on Saturday in order to secure a sectional final meeting with either Colorado College or Salisbury University.

Noonan: What Quarterbacks Could Have An Impact This Saturday?

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Western New England’s Alec Coleman is just one of many D3 quarterbacks that can lead offenses with both his arm and legs. (PHOTO COURTESY: Chris Marion)

By Matt Noonan | @MattNoonan11

Last week, a majority of New England’s D3 quarterbacks were forced to tuck and run – you can thank Mother Nature for last week’s ground and pound attack.

Sure, the weather may have been a factor for some offensive game plans, but watching quarterbacks lead teams down the field this fall with both their arms and legs seems to be the new norm for a position that used to be all about throwing touchdowns or fades.

And with a very important week approaching for some teams, one should expect to see their favorite school’s quarterbacks once again utilize both their arms and legs in must-win contests.

One of those quarterbacks that can pass and run is Alec Coleman of Western New England, who has scored 16 touchdowns in his last three contests, including nine scores on the ground.

Last week against Nichols College, Coleman helped the Bears erase a one-score deficit by finishing the game with five touchdowns, including four on the ground (Coleman’s four rushing scores matched a season-high, which he set one week earlier during his team’s 70-13 win over the University of New England).

Coleman began catching our attention for his passing and rushing abilities last month when he guided his team to impressive wins against Anna Maria College and Salve Regina.

Through eight games this season, Coleman has accounted for 28 touchdowns, including a team-high 13 scores on the ground. He currently leads the Golden Bears’ rushing attack with 652 yards and should certainly enjoy more success this weekend against Endicott College.

Watching the Endicott defense attempt to slow down Coleman will be one of many storylines to follow when the two teams converge on Saturday in Beverly – a win for Coleman’s squad would most likely secure the Blue and Gold their second-straight conference crown.

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Springfield College’s Hunter Belzo has been a player to watch under center the past few weeks. (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan)

In Springfield this weekend, one should keep an eye on Hunter Belzo, the running back turned quarterback that has led Springfield College to some exciting wins this fall, including a 17-14 win last month at WPI (that was hands down one of my favorite football games I saw this season).

Belzo, who made his first career start under center against the Engineers last month, will look to keep the Pride in contention for a conference crown when Springfield hosts Maine Maritime Academy.

Similar to his performance two weeks ago against Catholic University, Belzo should have no problems finding the end zone against the Mariners with both his feet and arm.

Amherst College quarterback Ollie Eberth has quietly enjoyed a successful third season with the Mammoths, tossing eight touchdowns, while adding a career-best six scores on the ground.

Eberth recorded a pair of rushing touchdowns in his team’s first two wins of the season, while adding one score on the ground against Colby College and Middlebury College.

Last week against Tufts University, Eberth relied more on his teammates in the rushing game, but did conclude his team’s 19-13 win with 150 passing yards.

This week, Eberth will most likely depend on arm against a Trinity College defense that has surrendered an average of 204.9 yards per game through the air, while holding rushing attacks to roughly 65 yards per contest. But maybe Eberth could locate the end zone with his feet when Amherst’s offense makes it into the red zone on Saturday.

Trinity’s defense managed to slow down Tufts signal-caller Ryan McDonald, a player coach Jay Civetti considers “a runner first,” a few weeks ago, so it will be interesting to see if they can contain Eberth, as well.

McDonald is always a player to watch on the Jumbos – so far this season, he has scored 17 touchdowns, including seven on the ground. Last week against Amherst, McDonald rushed for a 25-yard touchdown late in the second, which brought the visitors within four points (10-6) of the Mammoths at the break.

A few other quarterbacks to keep an eye on this week:

  • Will Jernigan (Middlebury College): The Decatur, Georgia native has been a quarterback to watch this fall – currently, he has recorded career-bests in touchdown passes (six) and rushes (four). Despite being grounded for much of last week against Trinity, Jernigan has been able to lead a Panthers offense with both his arm and legs. Against Williams College, he rushed for a season-high 94 yards on 27 carries and one score, while tossing two touchdowns. One week later against Bates College, he relied on his arm more than his leg to lead the Blue and White to an exciting 35-34 victory. Look for Jernigan to return his form from earlier this season when the Panthers visit Hamilton College on Saturday.
  • Bobby Maimaron (Williams College): Maimaron still has time to establish some new career-highs, both this week and next week, but our Noontime Sports Rookie of the Year has quietly produced a successful second season with the Ephs, which has seen the Duxbury, Massachusetts native toss eight touchdowns, while adding an additional eight scores on the ground. The eight rushing touchdowns shattered his mark of seven from one year ago. 
  • Mark Piccirillo (Wesleyan University): The Shelton, Connecticut native is always a quarterback to watch every week. So far this season, he has accounted for 15 touchdowns, including three on the ground. He needs 29 yards to match last year’s rushing total (474), which he should be able to muster against Williams on Saturday.

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