Tag: NCAA Division III

Framingham State’s Onujiogu’s Signs With The Seattle Seahawks

Joshua Onujiogu (No. 91), who played defensive end at Framingham State, was recently signed by the Seattle Seahawks. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin Photography)

By NoontimeSports.com

Joshua Onujiogu’s football journey is not over yet.

The Framingham State University defensive end that racked up a career-best 44 solo stops last fall, including 13.5 sacks and 25 tackles for a loss, was signed yesterday by the Seattle Seahawks.

According to D3Football.com, Onujiogu is the only NCAA Division III student-athlete to ink his name on a contract with an NFL team.

The Wareham, Massachusetts native gained attention from the Houston Texans and New England Patriots following an impressive pro day workout earlier this year at Holy Cross. He also visited with the Patriots ahead of this year’s draft.

Onujiogu has been a staple of coach Tom Kelley’s defense since his initial season with the Rams in 2016. He registered 228 total tackles in 47 contests to go with 36 sacks, 67 tackles for a loss, and three forced fumbles.

Against Westfield State University last September, Onujiogu recorded his first-ever interception to go with nine total tackles, including five tackles for a loss of 26 yards.

Prior to his team’s initial NCAA postseason contest against Muhlenberg College, Onujiogu was named the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) Defensive Player of the Year. He was also named to the New England Football Writers’ (NEFW) Division II/III All-New England team while securing a spot on the D3Football.com All-Region 1 squad.

Onujiogu concluded his final season by earning a spot on our Noontime Sports All-New England Team.

Rhodes Women’s Lacrosse Seeks Its Seventh-Straight SAA Title

Baylee Barker and the Rhodes College women’s lacrosse team will attempt to win its seventh-straight SAA crown on Sunday. (PHOTO COURTESY: Rhodes College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan

Since their inaugural season in 2014, the Rhodes College women’s lacrosse team has been a squad to watch in the Southern Athletic Association (SAA).

Rhodes has captured six-straight league crowns and recently clinched its fifth-straight undefeated conference season when they defeated Berry College earlier this month by a score of 24-3.

The 21-goal victory over the Vikings was followed by an impressive 26-3 win this past weekend against Birmingham-Southern College, which provided Rhodes with a spot in Sunday’s SAA Finals.

Rhodes will meet Sewanee in this year’s SAA Championship with the winner advancing to next month’s NCAA Division III Tournament.

Sunday will mark the second time the Lynx and Tigers square off in the SAA Championship as Rhodes defeated Sewanee in 2015 to claim its initial title in program history. The three-goal (13-10) victory would be followed by Rhodes’ first-ever national postseason win against Meredith College.  

Franklin & Marshall defeated the Lynx in the second round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

Rhodes enters its seventh-straight conference championship riding a six-game winning streak, which began last month with a 19-8 victory over Transylvania University. Prior to their win over the Pioneers, Rhodes scored some impressive non-league wins against Colorado College (11-10 OT) and Illinois Wesleyan University (18-5). Additionally, Rhodes survived a shootout last month with Rowan University (17-15).

Emily Bruner is one of many players to watch on the Lynx – the junior attack from Gaithersburg, Maryland leads the team in points (103) and assists (90). Baylee Barker leads the squad in goals (62) while Payton Bennett has chipped in 51 goals and 21 assists.  

Bruner’s 103 points are the most recorded by any SAA student-athletes while Barker and Bennett are in the Top 10 goals scored.

Sewanee’s Hattie Fogarty is also in the SAA Top 10 in goals and points and will certainly be a player to watch on Sunday after leading her squad to a 14-9 victory over Centre College in the SAA semifinals.

Fogarty concluded her team’s contest with the Colonels by tallying five goals on 11 shots to go with a season-high six ground balls.

Fogarty and the Tigers rank second in the SAA in goals scored with 287 but will face a challenging test on Sunday against the league’s best defense, which has yielded 124 goals in 16 contests (that is an average of 7.75 goals per game). Rhodes’ defense held Sewanee to a season-low six goals in last month’s meeting with the Tigers being shut out in two frames (second and third quarters).  

In addition to Rhodes’ impressive attack and midfield, fans should certainly keep their eye on the squad’s goalies: Emma Bradley and Olivia Wood. The duo combined for nine saves in this previous meeting with Sewanee, and lead all SAA goalies in goals-against average.

Sunday’s championship, which will take place at Mason Field in Memphis, Tennessee, is scheduled to commence at 1 p.m. eastern.

Centre Looks To Capture Its Second-Straight SAA Title

Will Hubbs and the Centre College men’s lacrosse team are two wins away from capturing their second-straight SAA title. (PHOTO COURTESY: Teresa Poplin)

By Matt Noonan

Another busy and exciting weekend of NCAA Division III lacrosse has officially arrived with the Southern Athletic Association (SAA) set to crown a men’s lacrosse champion.  

The six-team tournament, which began last Saturday with a pair of quarterfinal matchups will resume later today with two semifinal contests with the winners advancing to Sunday’s championship in Danville, Kentucky.

Top-seed Centre College, which won all its league matchups this season, is two wins away from capturing its second-straight league title.

The Colonels will welcome Rhodes College to campus this evening with a face-off scheduled for 7 p.m.

Centre beat Rhodes earlier this month by a score of 11-4. Will Hubbs highlighted the win with four goals – he also scooped one ground ball – while Ridr Knowlton located the back of the net twice. In addition to the Colonels’ offensive output, Centre’s defense limited Rhodes to just one goal in two periods while pitching a shutout in the opening frame.

Since beating the Lynx, the Colonels have won two more games, beating Hendrix College (13-10) and Sewanee (16-9).

Centre has not competed in nearly two weeks, but perhaps the extra rest could help the Black and Gold, which captured its first SAA Tournament title since 2014 last spring when they beat Rhodes.

“It’s good in a sense that we get a little time to rest, recharge, and get healthy,” Centre coach Grant Zimmerman said, via CentreColonels.com.  

Rhodes has won two of its last four contests, including its SAA quarterfinal tilt with Berry College last weekend. The Lynx topped the Vikings, 19-10, and enter tonight’s semifinal matchup riding a two-game winning streak.

Coach Dave Zazzaro’s Lynx have won just four games this season but have faced some challenging competition that could help the Red and White attempt to claim its first postseason crown since 2018.

The other SAA semifinal pits Sewanee visiting Birmingham-Southern College with a face-off scheduled for 4 p.m. (ET).

Birmingham-Southern enters today’s semifinal match riding a four-game winning streak, which included an end-of-season victory over Rhodes.

Reid Harrison secured the two-goal (14-12) win over the Lynx by netting his second tally with 22 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, which halted a three-goal run by Rhodes.

Like Centre, Birmingham-Southern has not competed since April 14, so it will be interesting to see if the squad’s momentum remains with the Panthers, which saw its bid toward an SAA crown conclude last April in the conference semifinals.

The Tigers of Sewanee have won six games this spring and defeated Hendrix in its opening-round matchup last weekend. Luke Valentine led Sewanee with four goals and one assist to go with three ground balls and one caused turnover. Davis Gillenwater notched a hat trick and Phelps Thomas stuffed the stat sheet with five points on three assists, two goals, and one ground ball.

All three student-athletes will be players to watch today in an important matchup with the Panthers.

D3 Lax Weekend Watch: Springfield Hosts MIT; Bowdoin Travels To Wesleyan

Zac Schuette and the Springfield College men’s lacrosse team seek its third-straight win on Saturday. (PHOTO COURTESY: Springfield College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan

Another busy weekend of NCAA Division III lacrosse has arrived – let’s celebrate!

Following an exciting overtime win on Wednesday, one team fans of small college lacrosse should keep their eyes on this weekend is Springfield College. The Pride edged Amherst College in overtime, thanks to an eight-point effort from Zac Schuette, who netted the clincher in the extra session.  

Schuette and the Pride will compete in their second conference game tomorrow when they welcome MIT to Springfield for a 3:30 p.m. face-off.

Springfield captured its initial New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) matchup last weekend by topping Wheaton College, 9-7. Schuette concluded his team’s meeting with the Lyons with six points on four goals and two assists while Springfield outscored the visitors, 6-1, in the second quarter to secure the lead for good.

Schuette has enjoyed a successful senior season, leading the Maroon and White in goals (25), assists (13), and points (38). Riley Burgmyer ranks second on the team in goals (14) and points (22).

Springfield has won its last two matchups with MIT with both games needing overtime to decide a winner. The two schools have not met on a lacrosse field in three years.

Wheaton College will look to score its first conference win when they host Emerson College at 1 p.m.

The Lions of Emerson has been an exciting story this spring as the Purple and Gold have won nine of 10 contests, including their last five matchups. Emerson has limited its last three foes to five goals or less – they held Regis College to just two goals on Wednesday in a 21-2 victory.

Birk Swan has been a player to watch on Emerson this spring. The sophomore attack has recorded career-highs in goals (25), assists (32), and points (57) to go with 21 ground balls. Swan currently leads the NEWMAC in points.

The Bowdoin College men’s lacrosse team will visit Wesleyan University tomorrow – this is a big game for both teams that enter the final weekend of March with a great deal of momentum. Bowdoin has won all six of its matchups this spring and recently beat Western New England on Wednesday by a score of 23-16.

Last weekend, the Polar Bears scored an impressive New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) win against Williams College. Donal Mullane registered five goals and one groundball in his team’s third conference win.

Wesleyan has won five of six contests thus far – the Cardinals bounced back from a one-goal setback to Colby College (10-9) last weekend with a 23-6 victory on Wednesday against Coast Guard Academy.

As a team, Wesleyan leads the NESCAC in goals (126) while Bowdoin ranks second with 105 tallies. Tufts University is second with 112 markers. 

The Cardinals, however, are second in the league when it comes to goals allowed (45), thanks to Colin Hanley, who has yielded 36 goals in six contests.

For Bowdoin to be successful, they will need to find a way to slip the ball past Hanley, who has surrendered roughly seven goals per game.

Connecticut College has only played four games this season, but two of their contests have ended with dramatic wins in overtime.

The Camels edged Hamilton College last Saturday, thanks to a five-point effort from Jared Rainville. JJ Ford and Jack Tenzer both recorded hat tricks in the win.

Tomorrow, the Camels will visit Williams College, a team they have not beaten since 2013.

Like Connecticut College, the Ephs enter tomorrow’s conference clash with some momentum following a pair of wins against Colby College and RPI. Williams began the season by winning one of three contests.

Finally, keep your eyes on Salem State University as the Vikings have enjoyed a successful 2022 campaign thus far that has included five wins and two losses. The Blue and Orange topped Thomas College on Tuesday, thanks to a game-high five goals from Sam Cioffi.

Salem State hosts Eastern Connecticut State University tomorrow at 12 p.m.

Noontime’s D3 Lacrosse Weekend Watch (March 18-20)

Caleb Holdridge and the Coast Guard Academy men’s lacrosse team have won three-straight contests. (PHOTO COURTESY: Brad Clift/CGA Athletics)

By Matt Noonan

Happy Friday, everyone – if you’re in Massachusetts (or some part of New England), hopefully, you’re taking advantage of the gorgeous spring weather today.

While March Madness might be the focus of many, both today and this weekend, I do want to share (and highlight) a few New England NCAA Division III lacrosse games to follow this weekend, beginning with an important conference meeting in Babson Park.

Babson College will host Coast Guard Academy on Saturday with the two teams meeting for the first time since last season’s New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament final (the Beavers beat the Bears to secure their first-ever conference tournament crown).

The Beavers enter Saturday’s meeting with some momentum from last week’s overtime win against Endicott CollegeLee Sipes scored the game-winner while finishing the non-league tilt with two goals and one assist to go with one ground ball.

Prior to their exciting win against the Gulls, Babson won two of three contests, including a season-opening win against Roger Williams University.  

Coast Guard Academy has rebounded from an 0-2 start, winning three-straight non-league tilts this month, including an 18-7 victory on Wednesday against Maritime College (N.Y.). Caleb Holdridge, a junior attack from Waterford, Connecticut, highlighted his team’s win over the Privateers with four goals and four assists to go with one ground ball and one caused turnover.  

Holdridge has been a player to watch on the Bears this season, tallying 28 points on 11 goals and 17 helpers in five contests.

Babson is 4-2 all-time against Coast Guard with the series between the two programs beginning in 2015. They have won one of two meetings with the Bears at MacDowell Field.

If the Beavers are going to be victorious, they will need to win most of the face-offs and scoop more ground balls. So far this season, the Green and White are 2-0 when they win both categories.

Another NEWMAC game to watch tomorrow features Wheaton College, the team that currently sits atop the league standings with a 7-0 record. The Lyons will visit Springfield College, which has won one of four meetings thus far – they recently lost a heartbreaker to Endicott on Tuesday in overtime.

Saturday’s meeting between the Lyons and Pride will be a good test for coach Kyle Hart’s squad, which has edged its last two opponents by one goal.

While Wheaton has been an exciting story this spring, the same could be said for Emerson College, a team that has won seven of eight contests this season. The Lions will host Eastern Connecticut State tomorrow with a face-off scheduled for 1 p.m.

Finally, don’t overlook MIT – the Engineers have won all five of its early-season contests and will attempt to claim its first league win tomorrow when they welcome Clark University to Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Ryan Gebhardt has been the player to watch on MIT this spring as the graduate student has scored 30 goals in five contests while tallying 10 assists. He currently leads the conference in goals but is second in points behind Emerson’s Birk Swan, who has produced 43 points on 19 goals and 24 helpers.  

A few other men’s lacrosse games to watch this weekend:

Williams College at Bowdoin College on Saturday at 1 p.m.: The Polar Bears have won four-straight contests, including two New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) meetings. They will look to win their fifth game against an Ephs squad that lost to Union College last Thursday.  

Wesleyan University at Colby College on Saturday at 1 p.m.: The Cardinals have produced 22 goals or more in all four contests this season. Can they continue their early-season momentum against a Mules squad that is seeking its first conference win? We’ll have to wait and see.

Curry College at Western Connecticut on Sunday at 2 p.m.: The Continentals saw their four-game winning streak snapped on Wednesday against The College of Wooster. Keep an eye on Kai Bruneau, the first-year attack from West Haven, Connecticut, who could help the home team return to the win column on Sunday.