New England Football: Harvard,Yale Set To Meet At Fenway Park In 2018

Washington Nationals v Boston Red Sox
Fenway Park will host next year’s Harvard-Yale Football game. (PHOTO CREDIT: MLB.com).

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

Fenway Park will be the site of next year’s Harvard-Yale football game – it was announced this morning via a press release that the two schools would meet  at the home of the Boston Red Sox next November.

2018 will mark the 135th Playing of “The Game” between Harvard and Yale – the two schools first met in 1875 with the Crimson claiming a 4-0 victory.

Next year’s contest will be the first time “The Game” will be played at a location other than Harvard Stadium or the Yale Bowl since 1912.

Yale captured this year’s meeting against the Crimson, thanks to quarterback Kurt Rawlings and halfback Zane Dudek, who both scored one touchdown in a 24-3 victory.

The Bulldogs, who won nine of 10 games this fall, earned their first outright Ivy League crown since securing the title in 1980. Yale’s lone loss of the season came against Dartmouth in October, but the Eli’s managed to rebound from the setback by winning their final six contests.

Fenway Park was the home to a trio of collegiate football contests this fall, including Brown-Dartmouth, which took place earlier this month on Friday, November 10th. The Big Green defeated the Bears, 33-10.

Additionally, the ball park hosted three high school football games this month, including Everett-Masconomet. Boston College High School, Catholic Memorial, Hingham and Scituate also competed at Fenway Park prior to Thanksgiving.

Ivy League Football Notebook: Can Yale Top Harvard In ‘The Game?’

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The Bulldogs of Yale will look to cap their season with a win over Harvard in ‘The Game.’ (PHOTO CREDIT: Yale Athletics | Jack Warhola mage)

By Bob Whitney (@WhitneyBob) 

Harvard’s shot at a share of the Ivy League title came to a screeching halt last Saturday in a less-than-inspiring 23-6 loss to the Penn Quakers 5-4 (3-3) at Harvard Stadium.

The Crimson 5-4 (4-3) are reduced to the role of spoiler as they head to New Haven on Saturday to face Yale in THE GAME.

The Crimson were never in position to challenge Penn as the Quaker’s Tre Solomon took the first possession of the game all the to the house on a 77-yard touchdown run to make it 7-0 and the Quakers never looked back.

The Harvard offense was contained all day by a veteran Penn defensive unit that limited the Crimson to a pair of field goals (24 and 32-yards) by Jake McIntyre.

Yale, with a 35-31 win last week over the Princeton Tigers, has clinched at least a share of the Ivy League title and can claim sole possession of the 2017 title with a win over Harvard on Saturday at the Yale Bowl, the Bulldogs first since 2006.

If the Bulldogs lose to the Crimson, Columbia and Dartmouth can also lay claim to a share of the title.

Yale sophomore quarterback Kurt Rawlings sparked the Bulldogs win over Princeton as he led the Bulldogs back from a 24-7 second quarter deficit. Rawlings was 26-for-34 for 304 yards and two touchdowns.

The Bulldogs freshman phenom running back Zane Dudek rushed 35 times for 180 yards and three touchdowns in the  come-from-behind win over Princeton. Eleven of his runs were for first downs, and he also caught six passes and finished with 212 all-purpose yards.

The Crimson defense will face a mountain of a challenge in defending Rawlings, who is having an MVP-type season and Dudek, who is the front-runner for National Rookie of the Year honors.

Harvard has failed to play consistent football but they have been a very dangerous team coming off a loss in the previous week.

Yale leads the series 66-59-6. The Bulldogs edged the Crimson 21-14 at Harvard Stadium last year.

The Game, in front of a sellout crowd at the Yale Bowl, has a 12:30 p.m. kickoff and it will broadcast live by CNBS Sports. Paul Burmeister and Ross Tucker have the call.

Bob’s Prediction: The Crimson give Yale all they can handle in THE GAME, but it’s the year of the Bulldogs! PREDICTION: Yale 24, Harvard 17

Around the Ancient Eight: Dartmouth 7-2 (4-2) will look to keep their title hopes alive when they host Princeton 5-4 (2-4), while Columbia 7-2 (4-2) plays host to Brown 2-7 (0-6).

A Yale win will be their first title since 2006, and their first outright title since 1980. Columbia has only one Ivy League title, in 1961, and Dartmouth is looking for its League-leading 19th title and first since 2015.

Yale quarterback Rawlings performance against Princeton earned his second Ivy Offensive Player of the Week award of the season (Sept. 18) and fourth career Ivy League weekly honor.

Yale’s Zane Dudek earned his fifth Ivy Rookie of the Week honor of the season, just the third Ivy to accomplish the feat, joining Harvard’s Eion Hu (six, 1994) and Princeton’s Chuck Dibilio (six, 2011).

With its recent win over Columbia, Yale claimed its 900th all-time victory. The Bulldogs are the third team in Division I history to accomplish the feat, joining Michigan and Notre Dame.

Penn superb senior wide receiver Justin Watson continues to climb the Ivy League record books. Watson is in second-place all-time with 3,585 receiving yards. He also ranks third in receptions (273) and fourth in receiving touchdowns (32).

Follow Bob for all the Yale football game highlights, features and more: @WhitneyBob

(Compiled from various Ivy League media outlets)

D3 Basketball Notebook: Clark-Worcester Set To Tip-Off At Midnight

NS BBALL NOTEBOOK

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

A brand new season of New England Division III basketball is set to tip-off tomorrow morning – in fact, it will be an early morning clash, to be exact, between Clark and Worcester State.

For the third-straight season, the Cougars and Lancers will meet a minute after midnight to compete for that initial win of the season.

Last year, the Cougars edged the Lancers, 77-74, thanks to a late triple from Luca McCormick, who concluded the contest three of eight from beyond the arc.

McCormick returns this season – he is a junior small forward – and will certainly be one of many players to watch on the Cougars this season. Additionally, keep an eye on senior John Pisacreta, who led the Red and White with 12.2 points per game.

Clark graduated a trio of seniors that paced the teams in rebounds, but perhaps McCormick will be a player to watch on the glass this winter.

Worcester State, which was chosen to finish fifth in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) this season, will be led by Cal Howes, who was honored four times last season as rookie of the week. Howes competed in 27 games last year (stared in seven) and averaged nine points per contest. He tallied 244 points, while pulling down 59 rebounds (51 defensive caroms).

Following their early morning meeting, Worcester State will head to Babson College this weekend for the Babson Invite – will include Babson, Endicott and Regis – while Clark will  compete in the NYU Tournament in New York City. The Cougars’ initial game of the tournament will be against Haverford on Saturday, November 18th at 9:30 p.m.

Larry Anderson and the MIT men’s basketball season begin their New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) title defense later tomorrow – 7 p.m., to be exact – when they welcome Bridgewater State to Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The Engineers competed in the annual MIT-Harvard game last Friday, but came up short against Tommy Amaker‘s Crimson. Harvard defeated MIT, 73-64, but the Engineers provided the Crimson offense and defense with some challenges in both halves.

“They beat us,” Anderson said shortly after his team’s nine-point setback to Harvard. “It’s an exhibition game for us and a regular season game for them, but I just thought in some areas we competed well, (while) other areas we were disappointed in … I was hoping we would (have) done a little bit better (from looking at the post-game stats).”

Harvard’s Seth Towns netted a game-high 20 points, while MIT received 17 points from Bradley Jomard. According to Anderson, Jomard will certainly be a player that will help the Engineers this season, especially in conference games against Babson, Springfield and WPI.

“Brad brings a lot to us. Being a 6’6″ point guard, he can guard one through five on the defensive side of the basketball and (for his height) he is a pretty smooth ball handler,” said Anderson.

“(Brad) fills the stat sheet, but even the things that don’t show up in the stat sheet that we always talk about, getting yourself in the invisible newspaper is doing things that don’t show up in the stat sheet, and he brings that level of calmness that we really covet.”

Look for Jomard to have a big impact on the Engineers this season, who will also receive contributions from AJ JurkoTim RobertsIan Hinkley and Cameron Korb.

Following their opening day tilt with the Bears of Bridgewater State, the Engineers will host Eastern Nazarene on Saturday before visit Tufts University next Tuesday, November 21 at 7 p.m. The Engineers will conclude the month of November with games against Keene State, Salem State and UMass Boston. Keene State and Salem State both advanced to last season’s NCAA Division III Tournament.

The Husson women’s basketball team was picked to captured the North Atlantic Conference (NAC), while Castleton and Colby-Sawyer checked in second and third, respectively.

Husson, which is led by coach Kissy Walker, is optimistic about the upcoming season, but also believes they have what it takes to contend for a conference crown, especially after capturing it the past two seasons.

“We have high expectations,” Walker explained in her team’s season-preview video.

The Eagles collected six first-place votes in the NAC preseason poll, while Castleton garnered a trio of votes. Colby-Sawyer earned one first-place nod.

Kenzie Worcester will certainly be one of many Husson players to watch on this year’s squad.

The Eagles will head to Williamstown this weekend to compete against St. Lawrence on Saturday (Nov. 18th) before facing Williams on Sunday, November 19th. The Eagles’ home-opener is set for Tuesday, November 28th when they host Thomas (Maine) at 5:30 p.m.


Games to Watch on Opening Day: If you’re up early – or perhaps late – make sure to check-out Clark-Worcester State at 12:01 a.m., but here are a few games I’ll be keeping an eye on tomorrow evening.

Brandeis at Roger Williams, 5:30 p.m. (Women’s Basketball)
Southern Maine at University of New England, 5:30 p.m. (Women’s Basketball)
Western New England at Springfield, 6 p.m. (Women’s Basketball)
Keene State at Southern Vermont, 7 p.m. (Men’s Basketball)
Brandies at Suffolk, 7 p.m. (Men’s Basketball)
Bridgewater State at MIT, 7 p.m. (Men’s Basketball)
Lasell at Babson, 7:30 p.m. (Men’s Basketball)
Western New England at Springfield College, 8 p.m. (Men’s Basketball)


The Noontime Sports Basketball Podcast (Episode One)Matt Noonan chats with John  Cabral on the first-ever edition of the Noontime Sports Basketball Podcast about the upcoming season, as well as what he expects from both Babson College and UMass Dartmouth this winter.

Ivy League Football Notebook: Harvard Keeps Title Hopes Alive, Set To Face Columbia

496202By Bob Whitney (@WhitneyBob) 

Harvard kept their 2017 Ivy League title hopes alive with a come-from-behind 25-22 win over Dartmouth at Harvard Stadium last Saturday.

The Crimson’s win set up an important showdown  in New York on Saturday against Coach Al Bagnoli’s Columbia Lions 6-1 (3-1), who fell from the ranks of the unbeaten at the hands of Yale, 23-6.

Yale, Columbia and Cornell rest at the top of the Ivy standings with 3-1 records while the Harvard, Princeton and Dartmouth remain in hot pursuit with two losses.

The Crimson rallied in the fourth quarter to defeat the Big Green 5-2 (2-2) behind the play of freshman quarterback Jake Smith. Smith was 18-for-35 for 125 yards and three touchdowns. Smith also rushed for 64 yards.

Smith’s 11-yard touchdown pass to Aaron Shampklin with 7:21 left in regulation sealed the win.

Meanwhile Bagnoli’s surprising Lions suffered their first loss of the season, courtesy of a dominating performance by a Yale defense.

Yale’s defense was the story as they recorded four sacks and two interceptions in limiting the Lions to just 206 yards of total offense and just one touchdown (1-yard run by quarterback Anders Hill).

Saturday’s contest will be the 76th meeting between the Crimson and Lions. Harvard holds a 60-14-1 lead in the series. The Crimson has won the last 13 games between the two schools. The kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Bob’s Prediction: The Crimson will make it 14 in a row over the Lions and stay alive in the title chase. All signs point to THE GAME! PREDICTION: Harvard, 21, Columbia 17

Next week: Penn invades Harvard Stadium, Saturday, November 11 for a 12 p.m. kickoff (NESN).

Around the Ancient Eight: It’s crunch time in the Ivy League this weekend with three huge contests, in addition to the Harvard/Columbia clash. Yale 6-1 (3-1) hosts Brown 2-5 (0-4), Princeton 5-2 (2-2) is at Penn 3-4 (1-3) while Dartmouth 5-2 (2-2) travels to Ithaca to face Cornell 3-4 (3-1). There are six teams in the hunt for the title with just three weeks remaining in the schedule.

Harvard’s all-purpose back, Justice Shelton-Mosley, leads the nation in punt returns for touchdowns (two) and punt return average (23.1).

Yale’s freshman running back, Zane Dudek, is having quite an inaugural season for the Bulldogs. Last week in the Bulldogs huge 23-6 win over previously unbeaten Columbia Dudek rushed a season-best 173-yards. The effort earned the first-year phenom National Rookie of the Week as well as offensive player and co-rookie of the week in the Ivy League.

Dudek, who ranks second among all Football Championship Subdivision ball carriers (8.4 yards per attempt), was placed on the FCS Jerry Rice Award Watch List. He has been Ivy Rookie of the Week three times while having four games where he rushed for over 100 yards.

Yale’s senior linebacker standout Matthew Oplinger leads the FCS averaging better than one per game and has 9.5 on the year.

Dartmouth’s upcoming matchup with Brown on Friday, November 10, will be held in historic Fenway Park.

Looking way ahead to a game that is looking more and more like it will determine the Ivy League football champion, Yale will host Harvard in THE GAME on Nov. 18.

Follow Bob for all the Yale football game highlights, features and more: @WhitneyBob

(Compiled from various Ivy League media outlets)

Ivy League Football Notebook: Harvard Looks To Keep Title Hopes Alive Against Dartmouth

496202By Bob Whitney (@WhitneyBob) 

Harvard’s bid to remain in the 2017 Ivy League title hunt will hinge on a win when they host Buddy Teeven’s Dartmouth Big Green on Saturday at Harvard Stadium.

Last week Princeton senior quarterback Chad Kanoff had a day for the record books as he completed all 20 of his first-half passes and finished 31-of-35 for an astounding 88.6 completion percentage as the Tigers overwhelmed Harvard 52-17.

Kanoff completed his first 21 passes and finished just shy of the FCS single-game completion percentage record of 88.9. Kanoff totaled 421 yards, eighth-best in Princeton history, and moved from 21st to 15th on the all-time Ivy League passing list.

The Tigers racked up 573 yards of total offense in the win.

There were a few highlights for the Crimson as freshman quarterback Jake Smith passed for his season-best 268 yards and running back Charlie Booker III rushed for 72 yards and a touchdown. Luke Hutton led the Crimson defense with 10 tackles.

The Big Green enters Harvard Stadium after a 22-17 loss in last week’s showdown with the Columbia Lions.

The Crimson defense will face another talented Ivy quarterback in Dartmouth’s Jack Heneghan who passed for 331 yards (21-of-36, TD) against Columbia. Hunter Hagdorn, was Heneghan’s favorite target as he had eight catches for 100 yards.

Eric Meile led the Big Green defensive effort with a game-high 16 tackles.

Saturday’s game will be the 121st all-time meeting between Harvard and Dartmouth, with the first game having taken place back in 1882. Harvard leads the all-time series 70-45-5 and has won 13-straight games over the Big Green.

Bob’s Prediction: Harvard has proven their ability to bounce back after a disappointing loss this season, so this week is no exception. PREDICTION: Harvard 28, Dartmouth 17

Next week: Columbia will invade Harvard Stadium on Nov. 4 (1 p.m. ILN/SNY).

Around the Ancient Eight: The other big game this weekend is in the Yale Bowl when Yale 5-1 (2-1) hosts Coach Al Bagnoli’s surprising Columbia Lions 6-0 (3-0) on Saturday (SNY/ILN).

Yale, which is coming off a huge 24-19 comeback win at Penn (Elis first at Franklin Field since 2007) last week, will be looking to break the Lions bubble.

A win by Columbia this week would give the Lions not only their first 4-0 start in Ivy League play, but also their third 7-0 start in program history and first since 1932. Columbia’s seven-game win streak, dating back to last season, is the longest since 1934-35. Another win would match the Lions’ longest winning streak, previously set twice, most recently from 1933-34.

Bagnoli’s Lions were picked to finish seventh in the preseason polls. Columbia will be looking to continue their best start since 1996.

With identical 2-1 Ivy records Cornell and Princeton will look to remain in the title chase when they square off on Saturday night in Princeton, NJ (7 p.m. NBCSN).

The Crimson’s Justice Shelton-Mosley leads the nation in punt returns for touchdowns (two) and return average (21.5). Shelton-Mosley is also 26th in kickoff returns (24.6).

Yale’s freshman running back Zane Dudek has been named to the Rice Award Watch List.

Dartmouth’s upcoming matchup with Brown on Friday, Nov. 10, will be held in historic Fenway Park.

(Report compiled from various Ivy League media sources).

Follow Bob on Twitter @WhitneyBob; like him on Facebook and Instagram.