By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11)
The third week of the Division III football season saw some impressive quarterback performances, including a few from the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC), which officially began its season last Saturday, September 16th.
Three NESCAC quarterbacks concluded the first week with four touchdowns, while three student-athletes tossed two scores. Middlebury’s Jared Lebowitz was the lone NESCAC quarterback to throw three touchdowns – his final score came in the middle of the fourth quarter, which provided the hosts with a 17-point advantage (30-13) with 9:17 remaining.
Middlebury hung onto defeat Wesleyan, 30-27, thanks to its defense down the stretch.
One of the three student-athletes to toss a pair of scores in his team’s opening day win was Williams’ Bobby Maimaron, who concluded his first collegiate game with 283 passing yards. Maimaron recorded his first collegiate touchdown pass in the opening minutes of the second quarter with a 93-yard strike to Frank Stola – the 93-yard pass was the longest heave by any of the 10 NESCAC signal-callers.
Amherst quarterback Ollie Eberth, who was one of three student-athletes to toss four touchdowns, recorded a 75-yard touchdown pass to Craig Carmilani in the third quarter, which provided the Mammoths with a 27-3 lead. Amherst would go onto capture its first game by defeating Bates, 41-17.
Wesleyan’s Mark Piccirillo did not throw a 70 or 90-yard pass, but did conclude his team’s initial contest with four scores and 432 passing yards. And 15 of his 39 completions were hauled in by Mike Breuler, who is currently second in the league with three touchdown receptions. Hamilton’s Joe Schmidt currently leads all NESCAC receives with four touchdown receptions.
We’ll certainly be keeping an eye on all of these student-athletes this week when they return to the gridiron on Saturday, September 23rd. The NESCAC will feature five games this weekend, including a 6 p.m. kick-off between Tufts and Wesleyan – the game will be played at Wesleyan.
Another big NESCAC game to watch this week is Amherst at Hamilton – this could be a battle of two great offenses, especially from what we saw in the opening week. Hamilton recorded 28 points in his season-opening setback to Tufts, while Amherst tallied 41 points against Bates.
SUNY Maritime’s Matthew Murphy Eclipse 100-point Plateau: For the third-straight week, the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) honored SUNY Maritime’s kicker Matthew Murphy as the Special Teams Player of the Week. As noted in Tuesday’s press release, this is the seventh time Murphy has been honored by the ECFC for his kicking.
Additionally, Murphy was tabbed the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III South Region Special Teams Player of the Week for the second consecutive week after booting a career-long 48 yard field, while connecting on five extra point attempts in his team’s seven-point (38-31) win over Merchant Marine.
As noted in today’s release, Murphy is now the program’s third kicker (and seventh student-athlete) to record 100 points or more in his career.
According to the latest NCAA Division III Football statistics, Murphy is tied for seventh in the country in field goals per game (two) and 32nd in field goal percentage (.857).
In addition to Murphy, wide receiver Brandonn Drumgole was named this week’s ECFC Offensive Player of the Week after hauling in 13 receptions for the second-straight week – the 13 receptions in back-to-back weeks are both program records. Drumgole also established a new single-game receiving record of 164 yards against Merchant Marine – he also caught two touchdowns in his team’s seven-point win to bump his season total to five scores.
Program Note: Make sure to circle back later this week for our weekly 10 Games to Watch post, which does include some non-New England teams, as well as a brad new Football Friday Podcast. The Football Friday Podcast is a brand new podcast we started prior to kick-off this season that highlights the various teams, coaches and student-athletes we cover.
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