Tag: Misericordia University

Noontime’s Teams To Watch in NCAA D-III Region 2

Michael Hnatkowsky and the Muhlenberg College football team will be a team to watch this fall in NCAA Division III Region 2. (PHOTO COURTESY: Muhlenberg College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com

Our early preseason college football coverage continues by highlighting 10 teams we will be watching this fall in the NCAA Division III’s second region.

Yesterday — Tuesday, July 20, to be exact — we highlighted the first region, which included teams in our backyard here in New England, along with a few squads in Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC.

Alright, without further ado, let’s share our list (below) with teams from Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.

Brockport: Since 2016, Jason Mangone and the Golden Eagles have tallied seven wins or more — they posted a 13-1 record in 2017 and advanced to the second round of the 2019 NCAA Division III postseason after edging Western New England, 33-28. Brockport did graduate some key pieces from its 2019 squad, including linebacker Alex West, but should certainly be a team to watch in the Empire 8 Athletic Conference.

Cortland: It’s hard to rule out the Red Dragons on a yearly basis, which have averaged 7.2 wins since 2015. They produced an eight-win season in 2019 but ended with a setback in the New York Bowl to Hobart. The two teams are not scheduled to compete in the regular season, but could perhaps see each other later this year in the postseason.

Franklin & Marshall: The Diplomats have produced seven wins or more since 2016, as well as finished atop the Centennial Conference (CC) in 2017 with a 10-1 overall record. They will look to continue their momentum two years after posting a 7-4 mark in 2019, which was capped by a bowl victory against Misericordia University.

Hobart: After posting a 5-4 record in 2018, the Statesmen bounced back with a nine-win season in 2019, which was capped with a New York Bowl victory. One should expect the Purple and Orange to continue their momentum from two years ago when they commence their 2021 campaign at Alfred University on Friday, September 3 at 7 p.m.

Ithaca College: The Bombers have produced a trio of eight-win seasons in 2017, 2018, and 2019, and will look to continue that momentum this fall when they commence their 2021 campaign against Bridgewater State on Saturday, September 4 at 1 p.m. 2019 was a special season for the Blue and White as they not only won the 60th Cortaca Jug Game against Cortland at MetLife Stadium, but saw Will Gladney become the program’s all-time leading receiver in receptions, yards, and touchdowns.

Johns Hopkins: The Blue Jays capped their 2019 campaign with a 51-28 Centennial-MAC Bowl game victory over Stevenson University — quarterback David Tammaro highlighted the win by completing 22 of 33 passes for 282 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for a career-high 101 yards on 11 carries and concluded his career as the program’s record holder in total offense (11,369 yards), touchdown passes (85), 200-yard passing games (34), and 300-yard passing games (13). He also recorded three 400-yard passing games, too — crazy, right? — but this season, fans of the Blue Jays will see someone different under center, but expect the program’s recent success to continue.

Muhlenberg College: Quarterback Michael Hnatkowsky will be spotted under center this fall — the Philadelphia Pennsylvania native, who was named the Centennial Conference (CC) offensive player in the year in 2019, will look to continue his previous success after an impressive third season with the Mules that saw him record career-bests in completions (270), touchdown passes (46), passing yards (3,640), and efficiency (175.81).

Salisbury University: The Sea Gulls competed twice this year, beating Christopher Newport and Wesley College in back-to-back contests in March to gain some momentum heading into their 2021 season-opener at Albright College on Friday, September 3 at 6 p.m. Quarterback Jack Lanham accounted for three touchdowns in both spring games, including a pair of rushing scores, and will once again be a player to watch this fall after being named the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) co-offensive player of the year with Ruhann Peele of Wesley.

Susquehanna University: The River Hawks concluded their 2019 campaign by capturing their third consecutive Centennial-MAC Bowl with a 88-24 win over Wilkes University. Susquehanna was one of two teams in the Centennial Conference to post 10 wins or more in 2019, and will once again be in the hunt for a league title as quarterback Michael Ruisch returns after finishing third in the conference in passing yards per game (215.9). Halfback Da’Avian Ellington is also back this season — the New Jersey native led all CC rushers with 112.3 yards per game in 2019.

Union College: 2019 was a very successful season for Jeff Behrman‘s Dutchmen — the sixth-year head coach guided the Maroon and White to an 11-1 season, which included a 33-0 shutout against RPI in their regular-season finale. Despite not playing last season, Union will once again be a team to watch this fall in the Liberty League (LL) as quarterback William Bellamy returns for his final season — he will be joined by a slew of other key pieces from the 2019 squad, including halfbacks Ike Irabor, who played locally at Xaverian Brothers High School, and Joseph Ferreira, a Rocky Hill, Connecticut native that rushed for a career-high nine touchdowns in 2019.

Noontime’s Teams To Watch In NCAA D-III Region 1

MIT will be one of a few teams to watch in the NEWMAC this fall. (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By NoontimeSports.com

A brand new season of NCAA Division III football is quickly approaching. And we’re excited about the upcoming season. Are you?

As a part of our early preseason coverage, we will be producing a list of 10 to 12 teams we will be watching this fall in regions one and two — yes, the NCAA has divided 239 teams into six regions for the upcoming season compared to previous years, which saw programs listed in the North, South, East, and West. These changes were highlighted on D3Football.com earlier this month.

So, without further ado, let’s begin our early preseason watch with our teams to watch in Region 1 this fall!

Delaware Valley: As noted last week on our podcast — well, we need to give some credit to James Baker of In The D3FB Huddle — the Aggies will most likely be the top team this fall in this particular region. DelVal did not play last fall or earlier this spring, but posted an 11-2 record in 2019, which included eight conference wins in Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC). The Aggies will begin their 2021 campaign at Kean University on Friday, September 3 at 6:30 p.m.

Endicott College: The Gulls improved from 2018 to 2019. And despite not appearing on the gridiron last fall, it is expected the trend will continue this season when coach Paul McGonagle leads the Blue and Green onto the field on Saturday, September 4 against St. Lawrence University.

Framingham State University: Aynsley Rosenbaum will make his head coaching debut on Labor Day Weekend — Saturday, September 4 at 12 p.m., to be exact — when the Rams welcome Brockport to Bowditch Field. Rosenbaum spent 12 seasons with the Black and Gold as the offensive coordinator, and has helped the Rams win nine conference championships.

Merchant Marine: The Mariners competed one last fall — they defeated their rival Coast Guard Academy in the Secretaries Cup. Quarterback Ian Blankenship highlighted his team’s lone win of the 2020 season and will certainly be a player to watch this fall.

Middlebury College: In 2019, the Panthers were perfect, winning all nine New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) matchups to become just the fourth team in league history to record an undefeated season.

Misericordia University: First-year coach John Davis and the Cougars will be a team you certainly will want to keep your eyes on this fall — Davis arrives in Dallas, Pennsylvania after three successful seasons with The Apprentice School in Newport News, Virginia. Under Davis, the Builders posted back-to-back winning seasons in 2018 and 2019. In 2018, Davis and the Builders beat Oakland University in the NCFA National Championship.

MIT: The Engineers have averaged 7.66 wins in their last three seasons — they have also represented the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) in back-to-back NCAA Tournaments. MIT’s previous success should continue this fall, but like previous years, they will face some challenges against two local conference foes: Springfield College and WPI.

Stevenson University: Similar to the Aggies, the Mustangs will also be a team to watch in this particular region — they open their season against Johns Hopkins, which finished its 2019 campaign with an 8-3 record, including a 6-3 mark in the Centennial Conference (CC). Their matchup with the Blue Jays will be followed by two VERY iroad trips at RPI and Delaware Valley.

Trinity College: Look for the Bantams to bounce back this fall after posting a 5-4 record in 2019. Prior to their five-win season, the Bantams produced three eight-win seasons, including a perfect 8-0 mark in 2016.

UMass Dartmouth: Quarterback Stephen Gacioch is back to quarterback the Corsairs for one more season — in 2019, he led the Blue and Gold to a 7-3 season. UMass Dartmouth last recorded seven wins in 2004 when they were a member of the New England Football Conference (NEFC).

Western New England: The Golden Bears have won eight games or more since 2014, and will once again be one of a few teams to watch in New England this fall. And like most teams, they did graduate some talent on both sides of the ball, including quarterback Alec Coleman, but expect Jason Lebeau‘s squad to be ready come week one when they host Springfield College on Saturday, September 4 at 1 p.m.

Wilkes University: Coach Jonathan Drach and the Colonels enjoyed a successful 2019 season, which saw the team post eight wins for the first time since finishing 8-3 in 2005. Despite losing to Susquehanna University in the Centennial/MAC Bowl, the Colonels should be able to continue to their momentum this fall when they kickoff their season at Schmidt Stadium against Keystone College on Saturday, September 4 at 1 p.m.

Catching Up With Curry College Men’s Basketball Coach Joe Busacca

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Joe Busacca was recently named the new men’s basketball coach at Curry College. (PHOTO CREDIT: Curry College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Last month, Curry College announced Joe Busacca will be taking over the Colonels men’s basketball program.

Busacca, who played college basketball at Misericordia, arrives to the Milton, Massachusetts campus following a two-year stint with the Manhattanville men’s basketball team.

At Manhattanville, Busacca was instrumental in helping Knights first-year Sean Smith become this past winter’s MAC Freedom Rookie of the Year.

Noontime Sports recently caught-up with the new coach of the Colonels to discuss his excitement for the upcoming 2018-19 season, which begins on Saturday, Nov. 10 when Curry hosts Rivier with tip-off scheduled for 6 p.m.

What interested you in becoming the next head coach of the Curry men’s basketball team? 

The biggest draw for me was the culture and the atmosphere that surround the school and the athletic department. I fell in love with the people and the facilities when I initially stepped on campus. The facilities here are at Curry, in my eyes, are one of the best in D3 athletics. It’s an exciting time to be a part of Curry College and I am extremely fortunate to be attached to this community

What do you know about Curry or the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC)? 

I have become pretty familiar with the CCC, specifically the competitive nature of the conference. I have had the pleasure of seeing Nichols, Roger Williams and Western New England play during my two years at Manhattanville College. Having a nationally ranked team like Nichols in our conference is incredible. There is nothing like conference play and I’m excited to go up against some great coaches and teams in this conference.

It may sound cliche, but what got you into coaching? Also, who has helped shape/mold you into the coach you are currently?

I would say it was two things: playing basketball at Misericordia and being around my former head coach Trevor Woodruff. I did not know how much time and effort went into the daily grind, but I absolutely love it. From in-depth scouting reports to practice plans to skill and development session to watching film helped me realize how much I wanted to stay involved with the game of basketball.

Coach Woodruff demanded perfection from all of us, but he was extremely approachable when it came to dealing with any issue, both on or off the court. Coach Woodruff is still someone that I stay connected with and my hope is if I can become half of the coach he is, then I know I am doing something right.

Being from New York, what do you know about New England basketball?

New England basketball has some extremely smart the players. Their IQ is on another level and it is something that I absolutely fell in love with while recruiting prospective players to Manhattanville. I am really looking forward to centering my recruiting classes around the six New England states.

What is the biggest priority for a new basketball coach with taking over a program?

Developing relationships. It is so important to develop relationships with the athletic department, the college’s administration and alumni, along with high school and AAU coaches, too. Additionally, I look forward to building relationships with parents and prospective student-athletes, as well. And by building these relationships, it will help elevate our program to new heights.

What is one of the biggest goals for both you/the team between now and mid-October, so you can get off and running?

I hate to sound redundant, but my biggest goal is to develop relationships with each members of our program.  It’s so important for me to gain these guys’ trust and show them I care for them outside of the gym. Without built-in trust, the season can become long, as well as be seen as more of a job than something that should be fun. If we have that built-in trust by mid-October then we will be in for a very special year.

Being from New York, how do you feel about being in Boston sports territory? Will you eventually become a Boston/New England sports fan?

I think the correct answer to this question is yes, of course I will embrace the teams out here in Boston. But being a life-long New York KnicksNew York Jets and St. John’s fan, I am not sure if I am ready to switch allegiances. Perhaps I can be persuaded to become a fan of the Boston Bruins or Boston Red Sox, though.

All-time favorite basketball movie is …?

Through the Fire. Being from New York, I was enamored with Sebastian Telfair; he was one of the best high school basketball players ever to play in my home state. His story from high school to the NBA was incredible.

Finally, who is your all-time favorite basketball player and why?

LeBron James. I know this answer may not be popular in the New England or Boston, but the way he goes about the game is incredible. The way he is able to take over a game in more than one way is a truly special gift. In a world where athletes’ mistakes are blasted all over the news, you never seem to hear any bad publicity attached to his name. I love the fact that he married his high school girlfriend, goes to his sons’ travel basketball games, and sends kids to colleges through his foundation.


Stay connected with Noontime Sports’ basketball coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_Hoops

Mass. College Soccer: NCAA Div. 3 Soccer Tournament Pairings

By Matt Noonan 

On Monday, the NCAA announced the pairings for the upcoming NCAA Div. III Men’s and Women’s soccer tournaments. And below are the various Massachusetts teams that have earned spots.

The tournament is set to kickoff on Nov. 8 and will conclude on Dec. 1 in San Antonio, Texas.

Men’s Soccer

* Elms College vs. Scranton (Nov. 10 at Babson College)

* Colorado College vs. Babson College (Nov. 10 at Babson College)

* MIT vs. Oneonta (Nov. 10 at Oneonta)

* Williams College vs. Thomas (ME) (Nov. 10 at Williams College)

* Tufts University vs. Vassar (Nov. 10 at Brandeis University)

* Brandeis University vs. Baruch (Nov. 10 at Brandeis University)

* Westfield State vs. Dickinson (Nov. 8 at Dickson College)

* Amherst College will play the winner of Dickinson-Westfield State on Nov. 11

Women’s Soccer:

* Westfield State vs. Wheaton College (MA) (Nov. 10 at Wheaton College)

* Farmingdale State vs. Williams College  (Nov. 10 at Wheaton College)

* MIT vs. Haverford (Nov. 10 at Haverford)

* Springfield College vs. SUNY Cortland (Nov. 10 at Hobart and Williams Smith Colleges)

* Brandeis University vs. Union College (Nov. 10 at Amherst College)

* Lasell College vs. Amherst College (Nov. 10 at Amherst College)

* Lesley University vs. Misericordia (Nov. 10 at Middlebury College)

* UMass Boston vs. Ithaca College (Nov. 10 at Ithaca College)

Mass College Hoops Recap: Tufts 61, Misericordia University 57

By Matt Noonan 

MEDFORD, MA – Clinging to a two-point advantage with 38 seconds remaining, Tufts University senior Tiffany Kornegay, (15 points, 10 rebounds) recorded two rebounds and two free throws in a span of nine seconds, which lifted the Jumbos past Misericordia University in the first round of the NCAA Division III tournament, 61-57.

“Misericordia really got after it, [and] I thought they played a great game, and made a lot of plays,” exclaimed Tufts head coach Carla Berube. “Down the stretch, we made the plays that we needed to, got some big rebounds, had some big shots contested and got rebounds and then got on the break.”

Both teams exchanged the lead nine times before freshman Hannah Foley and junior Collier Clegg, (11 points) helped Tufts relinquish it with back-to-back treys, which provided the Jumbos with a 32-26 lead at the break.

Tufts then constructed a 46-36 cushion to start the second half, which was erased and evened at 50-50 with five minutes remaining.

Senior Christine Marks, (22 points, 12 rebounds) sparked the Cougars offense with a few rebounds and free throws before senior Jesse Robinson, (16 points) provided Misericordia with their first lead in nearly 30 minutes when she recorded a pair at the stripe.

“Marks is just an excellent basketball player,” said Berube. “They’ve got a great supporting cast around her, and we had trouble defending them.”

Tufts eventually responded with a jump shot by Kornegay, which ballooned the Jumbos lead to 58-51 with 2:58 remaining.

“That shot got us into a rhythm, and I think we felt confident,” said Kornegay. “That’s what we needed to finish out the game.”

The Cougars then mustered six points during the final minute, but also watched Marks miss two consecutive layups, which halted Misericordia’s comeback to force overtime, and allowed the Jumbos to walk off their home court with a dramatic March Madness victory.

“Tiffany really pushed it out there in the end, and made plays when we need [them],” said Berube. “[Overall] it was exciting [because] it’s been a while I feel like that we’ve pulled out a game at the end when it’s really, really close, and Misericordia really tested us, so it doesn’t matter how you win now, it’s just about advancing and luckily we did that.”

Tufts will attempt to continue their quest toward a national championship when they face-off against Johns Hopkins University on Saturday, Mar. 3 at 7:00pm. The winner will earn a trip to sectional-finals, which is scheduled for Mar. 9.