D3 Football: Mass. Maritime’s Fontana, McCabe Set To Lead The Buccaneers Defense On Saturday

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Colin McCabe and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy defense combined for 14 tackles for a loss of 75 yards against Worcester State. (PHOTO COURTESY: Massachusetts Maritime Academy Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

After securing just two wins one year ago, the Massachusetts Maritime Academy football team has doubled their win total this season, thanks to some impressive efforts on both sides of the ball.

But from a quick glance from the team’s most recent outing against Worcester State, it appears as if the Buccaneers’ defense has been a big reason why Massachusetts Maritime Academy has won all four of its contests thus far.

Against the Lancers, the defense recorded 14 tackles for a loss of 75 yards. Jack Fontana led the unit with a team-high 14 total tackles, including nine solo stops, while Colin McCabe added eight tackles, including four tackles for a loss of 30 yards and two fumble recoveries.

Through four contests, the Buccaneers’ defense has limited opposing offenses to just 13.8 points per game and 75.8 rushing yards.

This week, the defense will certainly be tested against an undefeated Western Connecticut squad that is averaging 34.3 points per game, along with 337.8 offensive yards.

Noontime Sports caught up with McCabe and Fontana to discuss the team’s defensive performance thus far, as well as what they must do to continue their recent success on Saturday against Western Connecticut.

Jack Fontana WEB

Jack Fontana paced the Massachusetts Maritime Academy defense last week against Worcester State with 14 total tackles. (PHOTO COURTESY: Mass. Maritime Academy Athletics)

It sounds cliche, but what has made the defense so successful this season?

Colin McCabe: “I think that last year we were young, but (this year) our defense came back with experience from a year ago. (Last season) we developed the chemistry, (which has helped us be successful) and our coaching staff is always on top of what the (opposing) offense will be doing (every week).”

Jack Fontana: “Everyone is doing what they have to do, and it clearly shows on Saturday. The defensive line is getting to the quarterback, they’re holding up the offensive linemen and giving linebackers like myself and Sean Smialek the opportunity to rush the passer.”

How does facing quarterback Matt Long in practice help the defense prepare for other quarterbacks and offenses you will see throughout the season? 

Jack Fontana: “Going against a great athlete like Matt makes the whole defense so much better. You get to see one of the top athletes in practice (every day).”

Colin McCabe: “It’s tough because he is very shifty, so you have to really time out where he is going to be, so I focus on my footwork when going up against a guy like him.”

This week, your defense faces a talented quarterback in Western Connecticut’s David James. What must the defense do to slow down and contain the Colonials offense? 

Colin McCabe: “We’re probably going to see a lot of passing this week, so our defensive line needs to have a big game. We need to give our cornerbacks and safeties some time with the receivers, and we can’t let the quarterback scramble.

“We also need to make sure we contain (David James) before he throws the ball downfield, so those are a few keys for (the defense) for Saturday.”

Jack Fontana: “We have a good game plan going in right now, but we’re just going to have to follow all the points and insight from our coaches, so we can fly around to the ball and focus on limiting yards after the catch.”

Colin McCabe WEB

Colin McCabe has recorded a career-high seven sacks this season. (PHOTO COURTESY: Mass. Maritime Academy Athletics)

How has the defense been able to limit opposing rushers to less than 100 yards per game? 

Jack Fontana: “I think it is just from working hard every day in practice. The defensive line does a great job of getting tackles (and breaking through opposing o-lines) to making the running back half to bounce (in a different direction).”

Colin McCabe: “I know I sound like (New England Patriots) coach Bill Belichick here, but you have to just do your job, do what the coaches say, fight for your gaps and then swallow up the run game.”

Did you both think your team would enjoy this successful of a start and remain undefeated through five weeks of the season? 

Colin McCabe: “I didn’t think that 4-0 was too far out of the picture (when our preseason practices started two months ago). Pretty much every game last year was close (excluding) a couple, but we basically have all of our players back (from last season) so 4-0 seems pretty good (from my perspective).”

Jack Fontana: “We just try to go into every week (with the mindset) of a win every day in practice. We finished 2-8 last year and I think we were getting sick (of losing), so heading into the offseason and spring ball our focus was that we could do this and change our mindset heading into (this season).”

D3 Football: Team Of The Week (Oct. 8th, 2019)

D3 TEAM OF WEEK

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

With the fifth week of the 2019 New England Division III football season in the books, it is now to unveil our Zelos Athletics Team of the Week.

Similar to our ‘Players of the Week’  Zelos Athletics is also powering our teams of the week, too – these posts (and teams) can be seen every Tuesday throughout the 2019 season.


Offensive Team of the Week 

Matt Dunn (Norwich University): Dunn completed 11 of 25 passes for 289 yards and two touchdowns against Springfield College.

Stephen Gacioch (UMass Dartmouth): Against Framingham State, Gacioch amassed 440 total yards of offense, including 343 passing yards and two touchdowns. The junior signal-caller also rushed for a game-high 97 yards on 20 carries and two scores.

Zach Levy (Curry College): Levy helped the Colonels score their first win of the 2019 season by rushing for a game-high 216 yards on 13 carries and three touchdowns last Saturday against the University of New England.

Seamus Lambert (Trinity College): Lambert connected on 15 of 23 passes for 245 yards and three touchdowns while adding 41 yards on 14 carries.

Matt Long (Mass. Maritime Academy): Long accounted for 232 yards of total offense, including a game-high 160 rushing yards on 25 carries and three touchdowns. He also completed 10 of 19 passes for 72 yards.

Joey Mauriello (Salve Regina): Mauriello rushed for a game-high 163 yards on 20 carries (8.2) and three touchdowns last Saturday against Endicott College.

Shea McManaway (Endicott College): McManaway led all receivers last Saturday against Salve Regina with 118 yards on nine catches and two touchdowns.

Jacob Maher (Framingham State): Maher hauled in five catches for 215 yards and three touchdowns last Saturday against UMass Dartmouth.

Alex Maldjian (Middlebury College): Maldjian rushed for a game-high 125 yards on 30 carries and two touchdowns against Amherst College.

Sean McAllen (WPI): McAllen rushed for 183 yards on nine carries and three touchdowns last Saturday against Maine Maritime Academy.

Aaron-Moses Williams (Worcester State): Williams completed 30 of 41 passes for 405 yards and two touchdowns last Saturday against Massachusetts Maritime Academy.

Nikolas Moquin (Maine Maritime Academy): Moquin completed 22 of 32 passes for 298 yards and three touchdowns while adding 19 yards on four carries against WPI.

Randy Morgan (Becker College): The first-year tailback rushed for a team-high 152 yards on 16 carries and one touchdown last Saturday against Husson University.

Brian Peters (Univ. of New England): The third-year signal-caller completed 33 of 49 passes for a game-high 444 yards and three touchdowns against Curry College.

Michael Pina (Nichols College): Pina completed 34 of 50 passes for a game-high 325 passing yards and two touchdowns against Western New England.

Garrett Poussard (Husson University): Against Becker College, Poussard rushed for a game-high 159 yards on 31 carries (5.1 yards) and two touchdowns.

Keithen Shepard (MIT): Shepard caught a game-high seven catches for 115 yards and two touchdowns last Saturday against Merchant Marine.

Jeremy Soule Jr. (Bridgewater State): Soule Jr. rushed for a game-high 195 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns as the Bears defeated Westfield State last weekend.

Adam Wojenski (Framingham State): Wojenski completed 14 of 25 passes for 422 yards and five touchdowns last Saturday against UMass Dartmouth while adding 53 yards on 11 carries.


Defensive Team of the Week

Tyshawn Anderson (Anna Maria College): Anderson registered 14 total tackles, including seven solo stops and one sack for four yards, along with a forced fumble last Saturday against Apprentice.

Zack Catarius (Salve Regina): Catarius stuffed the stat sheet last Saturday against Endicott College with 12 total tackles, including three tackles for a loss of 22 yards and two sacks for a loss of 18 yards. Additionally, Catarius scooped one fumble.

Noah Clack (Bowdoin College): Against Wesleyan University, Clack tallied a team-high 10 total tackles, including seven solo stops and three tackles for a loss of seven yards.

Jack Fontana (Mass. Maritime Academy): Fontana paced the Buccaneers’ defense last Saturday with 14 total tackles, including nine solo stops. He also recorded one sack for a loss of three yards.

Kyle Johnston (Mass. Maritime Academy): Against Worcester State, Johnston tallied six total tackles, including four tackles for a loss of 19 yards and two forced fumbles.

Joe Kelly (Amherst College): Kelly paced the Mammoths’ defense with 11 total tackles, including 10 solo stops and three tackles for a loss of 10 yards. He also recorded five quarterback hurries and one forced fumble.

Colin McCabe (Mass. Maritime Academy): McCabe tallied eight total tackles, including four tackles for a loss of 30 yards and two fumble recoveries last Saturday against Worcester State.

Ricky Montalvo (Western New England): Against Nichols College, Montalvo tallied 11 total tackles, including three-and-a-half tackles for 15 yards and one-and-a-half sacks for 13 yards.

Philip Orlando (Coast Guard Academy): Orlando stuffed the stat sheet last Saturday against Catholic University with 13 total tackles, including two tackles for a loss of 11 yards and two forced fumbles.


Special Teams of the Week

Matt Alswanger (Tufts University): Alswanger connected on all five kicks, including one field goal for 21-yards against Bates College.

Michael Chen (Bowdoin College): Chen tallied seven points off two field goals and one extra point. His longest field goal was a 40-yarder.

J.P Dallazem (Trinity College): Against Hamilton College, the first-year kicker (and punter) tallied a career and season-high seven points off four extra points and a 31-yard field goal for seven points.

Nick DiCairano (Endicott College): DiCiarano tallied 12 points on six kicks, including a trio of field goals. The senior kicker booted a career and season-long 47-yard field goal.

Kieran Lombard (Western New England): Lombard connected on six kicks last Saturday against Nichols College, including three field goals with his longest kick being a 44-yard field goal.

Bryce Wade (WPI): Wade registered nine points off six extra points and a 38-yard field goal last Saturday against Maine Maritime Academy.

D3 Football: Team of the Week (Sept. 17th, 2019)

D3 TEAM OF WEEK

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

With the second week of the 2019 New England Division III football season in the books, it is now to unveil our Zelos Athletics Team of the Week.

Similar to our ‘Players of the Week’  Zelos Athletics is also powering our teams of the week for the entire football season.


Offensive Team of the Week 

Julian Burris (Dean College): Against Western Connecticut, Burris led all receivers with nine catches for 158 yards. He averaged 17.6 yards per reception.

Alec Coleman (Western New England): Coleman tuned in an impressive performance last Friday evening against Westfield State. The senior signal-caller completed 22 of 27 passes for 403 yards and five touchdowns while adding 43 yards on eight carries (5.4 yards) and one score.

Ryan Deguire (Springfield College): Deguire helped the Pride score their first win of the season by capping an 18-play, 85-yard drive with a six-yard touchdown. Deguire concluded his team’s contest with a game and team-high 100 yards on 11 carries.

Matt Dunn (Norwich University): Dunn completed 34-of-49 pass attempts for 399 yards and two touchdowns as Norwich topped St. Lawrence University in Vermont.

Ollie Eberth (Amherst College): In his team’s season-opener against Bates College, Eberth accounted for 304 yards of total offense, including a team-high 68 rushing yards on 12 carries. He completed 15 of 31 passes for 236 yards and three touchdowns.

Steven Fedorchak (Western New England): The junior wide receiver hauled in nine receptions for 319 yards and five touchdowns last Friday evening in Western New England’s big win over Westfield State.

Connor Fitzsimons (Fitchburg State): Fitzsimons helped the Falcons score their first win of the 2019 season by tossing the game-winning touchdown with five seconds remaining in the fourth quarter. The Fitchburg signal-caller concluded his team’s two-point win over Castleton University with 23 of 37 passes for 222 yards and two touchdowns.

Ryan Gaboury (University of New England): Gaboury led the University of New England receiving core with nine catches for 138 yards and one touchdown.

Stephen Gacioch (UMass Dartmouth): For the second-straight week, Gacioch put up some impressive numbers as the Corsairs sailed past the Eagles in an instant thriller. The Corsairs’ signal-caller completed 26 of 42 passes for 512 yards and five touchdowns while adding 27 yards on 17 carries.

Tyler Halls (Husson University): Halls led the Eagles receiving core with 13 catches for 185 yards. He also caught one touchdown, too.

Aidan Hogan (Husson University): In his team’s first contest of the 2019 season, Hogan caught six passes for 105 yards and four touchdowns.

David James (Western Connecticut): James concluded last Saturday’s contest against Dean College with five touchdown passes, including four scores through the air. He completed 14 of 35 passes for 279 yards.

John Kenney (Endicott College): Kenney led the Gulls’ rushing attack with 191 yards on 14 carries and two touchdowns.

Will Jernigan (Middlebury College): The Panthers’ signal-caller racked-up 252 yards of total offense, including a game and team-high 82 yards one 21 carries and one touchdown. Jernigan completed 16 of 33 passes for 170 yards and one touchdown as Middlebury topped Williams College in its season-opener.

Nick Juvelier (Curry College): Against Franklin Pierce, Juvelier accounted for 299 yards of total offense and four touchdowns. He completed 30 of 48 passes for 279 yards and four touchdowns while adding 20 yards on nine carries.

Matt Long (Mass. Maritime Academy): Long enjoyed a successful start to his team’s 2019 campaign last Friday against Maritime (N.Y.). He rushed for 141 yards on 16 carries and three touchdowns while adding 114 yards through the air (7 of 11 pass completions).

DJ Machado (UMass Dartmouth): Machado concluded last Saturday’s contest against Husson with six catches for 158 yards and two touchdowns.

Randy Morgan (Becker College): Morgan rushed for 105 yards on 22 carries for one touchdown as the Hawks scored its second-straight win of the 2019 season.

David Morrison (Husson University): Against UMass Dartmouth, Morrison completed 22 of 40 passes for 339 yards and five touchdowns.

Michael Pina (Nichols College): Pina completed 29 of 43 passes for 249 yards and three touchdowns in his team’s week two setback to Coast Guard Academy. He threw three touchdowns to three different receivers.

Ashton Scott (Wesleyan University): Scott recorded 293 yards of total offense, including a team-high 76 yards on 13 carries. He completed 18 of 30 passes for 217 yards and three touchdowns in his team’s season-opening win against Colby College.

Frank Stola (Williams College): Stola recorded a game-high six receptions for 151 yards and two touchdowns last Saturday in the Ephs’ season-opener against Middlebury.


Defensive Team of the Week

Luke Apuzzi (Williams College): Apuzzi turned in an impressive performance against Middlebury with 10 total tackles, including two forced fumbles, one-and-a-half tackles for a loss of seven yards and one sack for a loss of six yards.

Colin McCabe (Mass. Maritime Academy): McCabe posted 12 total tackles, including eight solo stops, three-and-a-half sacks for a loss of 15 yards and two-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 14 yards and one fumble recovery in the Buccaneers’ season-opening win last Friday against Maritime (N.Y.).

Javien Delgado (UMass Dartmouth): Against Husson University, Delgado tallied a team-high 14 total tackles, including nine solo stops and three-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 10 yards.

Jack Fontana (Mass. Maritime Academy): Against Maritime (N.Y.), Fontana tallied a team-high 16 total tackles, including nine solo stops, three tackles for a loss of 12 yards, and one-and-a-half tackles for a loss of nine yards. Fontana also recorded one pass break-up in his team’s initial win of the 2019 season.

Pete Huggins (Middlebury College): Huggins led the Panthers’ defense last Saturday against Williams with 13 total tackles, including five tackles for a loss of 16 yards and two sacks for a loss of 11 yards.

Carlos Riberio (Anna Maria College): Against Union College, Riberio led the AMCATs’ defense with 10 total tackles, including eight solo stops, along with one forced fumble and one pass break-up.

R.J. Robiskie (Coast Guard Academy): Robiskie led the Bears defense against Nichols College with 10 total tackles (two solo stops and one-and-a-half tackles for a loss of eight yards). Additionally, Robiskie registered one pass break-up and one quarterback hurry.

Tim Russell (Endicott College): Against Rochester last Saturday, Russell recorded a team-high 13 total tackles. He concluded the contest with four solo stops and, one-and-a-half tackles for a loss of five yards and half a sack for a loss of four yards.

Matt Schiano (Amherst College): Against Bates College last Saturday, Schiano stuffed the stat sheet with seven total tackles, including four solo stops, two tackles for a loss of three yards, one sack for a loss of one yard, one pass break-up and one interception (eight-yard return).

Keegan Stanton-Meas (University of New England): Stanton-Meas led the Nor’easters’ defense last Saturday with 13 total tackles, including nine solo stops. He also registered half a tackle for a loss of one yard, one pass break-up, and one interception.

Terrell Thomas (Maine Maritime Academy): Against Plymouth State, Thomas led the Mariners’ defense with 14 total tackles, including 12 solo stops. He also added one quarterback hurry.


Special Teams of the Week

Connor Kennelly (Amherst College): Kennelly connected on a trio of extra points and two field goals for nine points last Saturday against Bates.

George Lampros (Mass. Maritime Academy): Lampros tallied seven points last Friday evening on four extra points and one field (23-yards).

Kieran Lombard (Western New England): Lombard connected on all eight extra points last Friday in Western New England’s second win of the season.

Mason Von Jess (Wesleyan University): Against Colby, Von Jess recorded 12 points on three extra points and three field goals, while tallying 420 yards on seven kickoffs. Five of his seven kickoffs resulted in touchbacks.

Bryce Wade (WPI): Wade connected on a pair of field goals last Saturday, including a 26-yard boot, which helped WPI edge RPI, 6-3. Wade also recorded nine punts for 300 yards with three kicks landing inside the RPI 20-yard line. He also registered a trio of kickoffs for 170 yards with one touchback.

The Early Preseason Outlook: Mass. Maritime Buccaneers

MMA Bucs

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Our ‘Early Preseason Outlook’ coverage shifts to Buzzards Bay for a closer look at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy Buccaneers.

The Bucs will begin their 2019 campaign on Friday, September 13th, 2019 when they host Maritime (N.Y.) in the 12th Annual Chowder Bowl.

The Buccaneers’ 2018 Season: The Buccaneers mustered just two wins last fall, defeating Maine Maritime Academy (22-7) and Worcester State (26-0).

They were competitive in a few conference meetings, including a 17-14 setback to Plymouth State last October.

Mass. Maritime concluded its season with a 21-7 setback to Bridgewater State in the 40th Annual Ocean Spray Cranberry Bowl but hope to right the ship this upcoming season with perhaps an opening day win against Maritime (N.Y.) followed by victories against Maine Maritime and Westfield State.

The 2019 Outlook: The Buccaneers graduated just five seniors from last year’s squad, including wide receiver Paul Sances, who led the receiving core with 48 receptions for 699 yard, but return a slew of talent on both sides of the ball, beginning with linebacker Sean Smialek.

Smialek, along with Jack Fontana, led the defense by combining for 122 total tackles and 7.5 sacks for a loss of 31 yards. Both linebackers will be counted on this upcoming season, along with Kyle Johnston, who will be spotted on the defensive line.

The Bucs return a slew of offensive talent, including quarterback Ty Ebdon, who connected on 74 of 164 passes for a team-high 1,030 passing yards and seven touchdowns. Ebdon will most likely target Will Bennett, who led all receivers with four touchdowns.

Halfbacks Benjamin Sheehan and Matt Long return for their final seasons – both tailbacks reached the end zone five-time last fall, so look for the offense to lean on both student-athletes.

Finally, keep your eyes, Matt Wyzykowski, and James Cooke, who will be asked to anchor the Mass. Maritime offensive line.  

Mass. Maritime’s Schedule: The Bucs begin their season with a pair of trophy games – they will compete for both the Chowder Cup and Admiral’s Cup in the second and third week of September before ending the month with a trip to Westfield State.

Mass. Maritime will host Worcester State in early October before visiting Western Connecticut for a late afternoon tilt on Saturday, October 12th.

Weeks later the Bucs will close out their 2019 campaign with the Kelley Cup against Framingham State before visiting UMass Dartmouth one week later.

The Bucs will host Bridgewater State on Saturday, November 16th for 41st Annual Cranberry Bowl.

Players to Watch: Ty Ebdon (Quarterback/Gales Ferry, Conn.), Benjamin Sheehan (Halfback/Wilbraham, Mass.), Matt Long (Halfback/Weymouth, Mass.), Will Bennett (Wide Receiver/Sandwich, Mass.), George Lampros (Kicker/Punter/Bridgewater, Mass.), Matt Wyzykowski (Offensive Line/Old Saybrook, Conn.), James Cooke (Offensive Line/Wrentham, Mass.), Sean Smialek (Linebacker/South Dartmouth, Mass.), Jack Fontana (Linebacker/Grafton, Mass.), and Kyle Johnston (Defensive Line/Raynham, Mass.)


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