Tag: New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference

Noonan: An Exciting Finish Awaits Numerous Small College Football Teams

Jack Maguire and the Salve Regina University football team scored an important win last weekend against Endicott College. (PHOTO COURTESY: Tammy McManaway/TAMMY MCMANAWAY SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY)

By Matt Noonan

To say the next three weeks of the small college New England football season will be fun – and yes, exciting, too – would be an understatement.

For starters, we have quite a few conference races to watch these next few weeks, including one that currently features four teams in the Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) league.  

Endicott College appeared to be a lock to win their first-ever conference crown since 2013 when they, along with other members of the CCC, competed in the New England Football Conference (NEFC). But unfortunately, things changed this past weekend as their three-game conference winning streak was snapped with a 21-14 setback to Salve Regina University.

Luckily, it is just one loss – Endicott currently holds the head-to-head tiebreakers over Husson University and Western New England, who are also in the mix for the league crown. But to win the conference, the Gulls will need to beat their two remaining foes – Nichols College and the University of New England – as well as get some help from their rivals: Salve Regina and Western New England.

Salve Regina has beaten Nichols and UNE but needs to win their final two contests against Curry College and Husson.

Western New England beat Salve Regina in their first conference meeting of the 2021 season earlier this month before falling to Endicott one week later. The Golden Bears will be idle this weekend but conclude their regular-season slate with back-to-back contests in November against Husson and UNE.

And while all the attention is currently on Salve Regina following an exciting win this past weekend against Endicott, one should certainly not overlook Husson, which has won two of three league matchups, as well as scored some impressive non-league wins against Plymouth State and Springfield College.

As of now, it is hard to project a winner of the Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) league, but we should have a better gauge this Saturday.

Speaking of Springfield College, they are also in the mix for their conference crown in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) but need to win their remaining three contests, including their matchup this weekend with the University of Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA).

The Mariners have been a great story this fall, winning seven consecutive contests to match their best start in program history. They scored an exciting 44-34 win this past weekend against Catholic University, thanks to both Ian Blankenship and Brian McGovern, who combined for five touchdowns, including three on the ground.

Springfield has beaten USMMA in two of their last three outings, including twice at home in 2017 and 2019.

Like the Mariners, the Pride has also become a team to watch over the last few weeks after rebounding from a 1-3 start by winning their last three contests to bump their overall record to 4-3.

David Wells and Isaiah Cashwell-Doe headlined Springfield’s most recent win against WPI.

Saturday’s matchup between the Pride and Mariners is scheduled for 1 p.m. – the contest will be held in Springfield, Massachusetts.

South of Springfield – West Haven, Connecticut, to be exact – will feature another important matchup to follow as Assumption College visits the University of New Haven on Saturday, October 30 for a 1 p.m. kickoff.

Both teams enter the ninth week of the Division II season in contention for the Northeast-10 Conference (NE10) crown – UNH has not lost a single conference game this fall while Assumption has won four of five league meetings. Assumption could win the conference, but they need to win their final three outings, including two against the top two squads in the league.

Bentley University was idle this past weekend but has been a great story as they have not lost a game since October 12, 2019, and head into the final three weeks with a great deal of momentum.

The Falcons will be at home this weekend against Franklin Pierce before visiting New Haven next Saturday, November 6. It is possible the Falcons and Chargers could enter the week ten matchup without a single conference loss.  

Noontime’s D3 Football Roundup: Ingraffia, Aylward Lead Endicott Past Husson

Shane Aylward caught the go-ahead/game-winning touchdown on Saturday in Endicott College’s 24-17 win over Husson University. (PHOTO: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By NoontimeSports.com

Mike Ingraffia completed 18 of 27 passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns – his second touchdown to Shane Aylward proved to be the difference as Endicott College topped Husson University, 24-17, to improve to 6-1 overall and 3-0 in Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) play.  

With the win, the Gulls remain in the top spot in the league for the second-straight week while Husson concludes a four-game winning streak, which began last month with a 10-7 victory over Plymouth State.

Endicott led Husson, 14-10, at the break, thanks to a five-yard touchdown run by Tyler Bridge and a 27-yard strike from Mike Ingraffia to Geoffrey Ingrando before extending its lead midway through the third quarter with a 33-yard field goal by Ryan Smith.

Husson would tie the game on the ensuing possession with a 73-yard touchdown pass from Nic Visser to Tyler Halls, but Endicott would respond late in the session with Ingraffia capping a 14-play, 87-yard drive with a 16-yard touchdown pass to Aylward.



Endicott will visit Salve Regina University next week – the Seahawks picked-up its sixth win of the season by downing Nichols College by a score of 35-20.

Joey Mauriello rushed for 203 yards and 30 carries and three touchdowns against the Bison while quarterback Jack Maguire completed 17 of 29 passes for 214 yards and two touchdowns. Logan Sawyer led the Bison with 294 passing yards and one touchdown pass to Cameron Bowden.

Salve Regina led Nichols, 14-6, at the break before pushing ahead for good by scoring three touchdowns in the third quarter.

Western New England bounced back from last week’s setback to Endicott by beating Curry College, 23-10. Wide receiver Steven Fedorchak concluded the contest with seven grabs for 103 yards and one touchdown.

The Golden Bears will be at home next weekend – they will welcome Nichols to Springfield, Massachusetts for a 1 p.m. kickoff.

One week after scoring an impressive 60-0 victory over Coast Guard Academy, the Springfield College Pride scored another big win as they defeated Norwich University, 56-7, in Vermont.

Isaiah Cashwell-Doe rushed for a game-high 144 yards on five carries and two touchdowns while Patrick Ladas added 59 yards on five carries and one rushing score.

Springfield concluded the game with 576 yards of total offense while its defense registered five tackles for a loss of 25 yards, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, and two interceptions.

The Pride remain one of three teams with perfect records against New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) foes – Merchant Marine improved to 3-0 in league play with a 56-34 win over MIT while Catholic University topped Coast Guard Academy, 30-7.

Aaron-Moses Williams completed 30 of 45 passes for 381 yards and four touchdowns – his final touchdown pass to Ke’Vaughn Davis (13 catches for 190 yards and three touchdowns) proved to be the difference as the Worcester State Lancers rallied to beat Massachusetts Maritime Academy, 28-24.

Worcester State will visit Plymouth State next weekend – the Panthers scored their second straight win by defeating Fitchburg State this afternoon by a score of 36-0. Tyler Kayo and Manny Sanchez combined for three rushing touchdowns against the Falcons.

One week after almost beating Wesleyan University, Bowdoin College snapped a 14-game losing streak to Amherst College by defeating the Mammoths in Maine by a score of 21-14.

Quarterback Andrew Boel tossed three touchdowns in the win while Andre Eden rushed for 105 yards on 31 carries.

Amherst is now 1-2 against New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) teams from Maine.

Trinity College and Williams College remained perfect through five weeks of NESCAC play as the Bantams rolled past Bates College, 45-7, while the Ephs topped Hamilton College, 35-7.

Noontime’s D3 Football Teams to Watch in Week Seven

Endicott College will be one of five teams to watch this weekend when the Gulls visit Husson University. (PHOTO: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By NoontimeSports.com

It’s that time again when we highlight five teams to watch (and yes, keep an eye on) this weekend in New England NCAA Division III football.  

Bowdoin College (0-4, 0-4 NESCAC): The Polar Bears played their best game of the 2021 season last week. However, their effort did not result in a victory against Wesleyan University, but a message was sent to their conference foes: watch out.

From what I saw last weekend (from afar, of course) was a team that certainly could provide problems for opposing offenses and defenses. Additionally, Bowdoin’s quarterback – Andrew Boel – will be a player to watch, as well – he was named this week’s New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Offensive Player of the Week.

Boel enjoyed a successful first start with Bowdoin last Saturday by completing 21 of 30 passes for 401 yards and five touchdowns.

This week, the Polar Bears host an Amherst College squad that has won three of four matchups but has allowed at least 10 points – sometimes more – in all four meetings.

Endicott College (5-1, 2-0 CCC): The Gulls surprised us last weekend against Western New England.

Not only did Endicott beat the Golden Bears, who put up 41 points one week earlier in its conference opener against Salve Regina University, but also scored on its first five series (four touchdowns, one field goal).

Quarterback Mike Ingraffia and halfback John Kenney combined for six touchdowns while the Endicott defense limited Western New England’s passing attack to a season-low 161 yards.

This week, the Gulls will attempt to continue its midseason momentum when they visit Husson University for an important conference matchup.

The Eagles have won four straight contests and have not lost since their season-opener against UMass Dartmouth.

Springfield College (2-3, 1-0 NEWMAC): The Pride scored their first win at home last week, defeating Coast Guard Academy, 60-0.

This week, Springfield will hit the road with hopes of winning their second-straight New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) matchup against Norwich University.

The Cadets also beat Coast Guard two weeks earlier in New London, Connecticut.

Springfield enters the seventh week as one of three teams in the NEWMAC with a perfect record in conference play – Catholic University and the United States Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) have yet to lose a league matchup, as well.

Keep your eyes on Springfield’s Tim Callahan and Patrick Ladas, who combined four rushing touchdowns last week against the Bears.

Springfield has won all three meetings against Norwich since both teams joined the NEWMAC in 2017.

Western Connecticut (3-3, 2-2 MASCAC): The Colonials are looking to bounce back after seeing their comeback fall short one week ago to the Plymouth State Panthers.

Western Connecticut’s rushing attack was held to a season-low 102 yards on 32 carries while the Plymouth secondary provided a lot of challenges for quarterback John Giller, who completed 13 of 21 passes for 147 yards. Giller did toss two touchdowns in the three-point (16-13) setback to bump his season total to nine but also threw one interception.

This week, the Colonials visit Framingham State, which has yet to lose a conference game this fall. The Rams and Bridgewater State remain the top two teams in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC), but a win by Western Connecticut could keep their league title hopes alive.  

Western New England (3-3, 1-1 CCC): The Golden Bears are looking for a bounce-back week.

After losing their first conference tilt of the 2021 season, the Blue and Gold will attempt to return to the win column on Saturday when they visit Curry College.

In 2019, the Golden Bears topped the Colonels at home by a score of 49-27, thanks to three touchdowns – two through the air and one on the ground – from Alec Coleman.

Coleman won’t be competing for the Golden Bears on Saturday, but a few members of the 2019 team will, including Erich Keutmann, who led the Western New England defense last week with 11 total tackles.

Despite last week’s loss to Endicott, Western New England is still in the hunt for the conference crown.

Noontime’s D3 Football Teams to Watch in Week Six

Joshua Onujiogu and the Framingham State defense shined last week against Plymouth State. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin/Frank Poulin Photography)

By Matt Noonan

The second half of the 2021 New England NCAA Division III football season begins this weekend – man, that first half went by quick, eh?

Luckily, there is still plenty of football left to be played, and as usual, it is time to highlight our five teams to watch this weekend.

Amherst College (2-1, 2-1 NESCAC): Through three weeks of the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) season, the Mammoths have been a pleasant surprise, winning two of three contests, including a 24-21 victory last weekend against Tufts University.

Quarterback Brad Breckenridge concluded last week’s game with 223 yards of total offense, including 103 yards rushing and three touchdowns.

Saturday’s performance against the Jumbos was Breckenridge’s most impressive outing this fall after struggling one week earlier against the Colby College defense.  

As a team, Amherst’s best effort occurred two weeks ago in an opening day win against Bates College when the Purple and White recorded 432 yards of total offense. Can they duplicate that performance this week against Middlebury College?

In addition to watching Brad Breckenridge, make sure to keep your eyes on defensive back Matt Durborow, who concluded last week’s game against Tufts with 12 total tackles, including five solo stops (Ryan Monteleone also recorded 12 total tackles, too).

Framingham State (3-2, 3-0 MASCAC): Tom Kelley’s squad has seemed to click into gear heading into the stretch run.

After starting its season with back-to-back losses, the Rams have won three consecutive conference tilts, including a 33-0 win over Plymouth State last Saturday.

Devaun Ford rushed for a pair of scores while Elijah Nichols hauled in a game-high 12 receptions for 116 yards. Cully Curran paced the defense with five solo tackles while the unit combined for four sacks and eight tackles for a loss of 44 yards. Framingham’s defense also recorded four pass breakups and one quarterback hurry.

This week, the Rams visit Fitchburg State, which is seeking its first win under Scott Sperone. A win for Framingham State certainly would provide them with additional momentum heading into next week’s conference clash with Western Connecticut.

Massachusetts Maritime Academy (3-1, 2-0 MASCAC): The Buccaneers enter the sixth week of the season riding a two-game winning streak that will be tested on Saturday against a UMass Dartmouth squad that suffered its second setback of the 2021 season last weekend to Western Connecticut.

A win over the Corsairs would keep the Buccaneers in the race for the top spot for the conference crown.

Cole Keefe, Hunter Lassere, and Mack Brown led the Massachusetts Maritime defense last week against Westfield State – the unit tallied five sacks and 12 tackles for a loss of 56 yards to go with one forced fumble and three fumble recoveries. Expect the Buccaneers defense to provide the UMass Dartmouth offense with some challenges.

Norwich University (2-3, 1-0 NEWMAC): The Cadets looked pretty good last weekend against Coast Guard Academy – Norwich beat the Bears, 24-21, for its initial New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) victory.

Norwich concluded the game with 492 yards of total offense and converted two fourth-down attempts.

Trevor Chase led all receivers with eight grabs for 155 yards and two touchdowns while Jeremy Henault stuffed the stat sheet with five solo stops, including one tackle for a loss of four yards, two interceptions, and one pass breakup.

Last week’s win resulted in Norwich securing a spot on our weekly Top 20 poll.

This weekend, Norwich will need to play its best football against the top team in the conference: the United States Merchant Marine Academy.

Western Connecticut (3-2, 2-1 MASCAC): With a 34-19-win last week over UMass Dartmouth, the Colonials have found themselves back in the conference crown mix.

Mack Driver highlighted his team’s third win of the season by rushing for 119 yards on 17 carries and three touchdowns while Ambrose Richards registered eight total tackles, including two sacks for a loss of 12 yards.

Coach Joe Loth praised his team for their effort against the Corsairs, saying his squad “executed three great game plans” on offense, defense, and special teams.

All three units will be tasked with executing great game plans again this week against Plymouth State.

Observations & Thoughts From Five Weeks of New England D2 & D3 Football

Western New England’s Steven Fedorchak set the program record for touchdown receptions last weekend against Salve Regina. (PHOTO COURTESY: Chris Marion)

By Matt Noonan

We’re slowly reaching the halfway mark of the 2021 college football season – crazy, right?

But the good news is there is still plenty of football left to be played.

While yesterday – Sunday, October 3, 2021 – technically marked the beginning of the sixth week of the season, here are some observations from what I have witnessed over the past few weeks.

Let’s begin in the Northeast 10 Conference (NE10) where Bentley University has won five straight contests to stretch its current winning streak to 10 games, dating back to October 2019.  

The Falcons, who currently occupy the top spot in the conference, have won three consecutive league matchups this fall, including a 34-21 contest this past weekend against Saint Anselm. Quarterback Stephen Sturm account for four touchdowns – three passing, one rushing – and 379 yards of total offense against the Hawks while Cole McCubrey registered a team-high 13 total tackles, including nine solo stops (Rene Nunez also recorded nine solo tackles).

Bentley enters the sixth week of the season as the 18th best team in Division II, according to the latest American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Poll. The Falcons are one of nine teams on this week’s list that have won five consecutive contests this fall.

West Florida and Northwest Missouri State, which secured the first and second positions in this week’s AFCA D-II Poll, boast identical 4-0 records.

As noted above, there is still a lot of football left to be played, but Bentley has certainly found ways to score hard-fought wins, both this past weekend and at the end of September against American International College.

This week, the Falcons host a Pace University squad that provided challenges for New Haven, which broke open a 14-14 tie with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns.

Last week’s Pace-New Haven contest marked the first time the Chargers competed on the road this school year.

Coach Chris Pincince seemed proud of his team’s effort against the Setters, saying that “a win is a win, we look forward. We took another step toward another goal (of winning the Northeast 10 title) that we have.”

New Haven hosts Saint Anselm this week – the Chargers defense will be tasked with slowing down an impressive Hawks passing attack that is led by quarterback Drew Willoughby, who has thrown for 10 touchdowns and 1,410 yards in four contests.

As of now, it appears as if both Bentley and New Haven are the frontrunners for the conference crown as neither squad has dropped a league contest thus far, but don’t overlook Southern Connecticut (3-2, 2-1), Assumption College (2-3, 2-1), and Stonehill College (3-1, 1-1). All three, along with possible American International College could conclude the season in the top spot.

Sure, we picked against Western New England this past weekend in the previous 10 Games to Watch – I thought Salve Regina University would continue its early-season momentum against the Golden Bears – but the Blue and Gold proved me wrong as they defeated the Seahawks, 41-3, in their initial Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) contest.

Steven Fedorchak highlighted his team’s big win over the Seahawks by setting a new program record for touchdown receptions with 23. He concluded the contest with a game-high 87 yards on six catches.

With the win, the Golden Bears returned to the top spot in our weekly poll and seem destined to occupy that position for the remainder of the season baring a future setback to say Endicott College this week or another conference foe later this fall.

We’ll share our weekly picks later this week, but from what I have seen from Western New England thus far, as well as this past weekend, they certainly are the favorite to win their fourth-straight CCC title.

Alex Cohen recorded six touchdowns last weekend in his team’s first-ever win against Keystone College. (PHOTO COURTESY: Brian Foley/Anna Maria College)

Here are a few more teams to keep an eye on over the next few weeks:

Anna Maria College: The AMCATs have been a great story this fall.

Anna Maria has won three of four meetings, including its first-ever with Keystone College, which saw quarterback Alex Cohen account for six touchdowns – five passing and one rushing.

Last Saturday’s win provided coach Dan Mulrooney with his seventh victory as the AMCATs head coach – the seven wins are the most recorded by a head coach in program history, dating back to their initial season in 2009.

Anna Maria has never won the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC) but could be in line for the title, pending how the next few weeks play out.

Framingham State: After losing back-to-back non-conference games earlier this season, the Rams have bounced back, winning three straight, including their first conference clash of the season with UMass Dartmouth.

Coach Tom Kelley’s squad enters the sixth week of the season tied with Bridgewater State for the top spot in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) – the two teams will compete next month in Framingham.

The Rams pitched their first shutout of the season last weekend against Plymouth State (33-0) and will attempt to extend their winning streak to four games on Saturday when they visit Fitchburg State for a 3 p.m. kick-off.

Norwich University: The Cadets scored a big win last weekend against Coast Guard Academy to secure a three-way tie atop the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) standings.

After starting their 2021 campaign with back-to-back losses, Norwich has rebounded quite well – hey, they did not make things easy on Endicott, which rallied to beat the Cadets on their home field.

Keep an eye on the Cadets moving forward – maybe their win against Coast Guard Academy is just the start of an exciting second-half run.

Trinity College: I watched the Bantams game last weekend against Middlebury College and came away impressed.

Trinity blanked the defending champions by a score of 28-0, thanks to a pair of touchdown passes from Spencer Fetter, who has thrown eight touchdowns this fall while completing 62 of 91 passes for 952 yards.

Fetter was impressive, but the same could be said for others, including halfback William Kirby and linebacker Brian Casagrande, who both scored one touchdown last weekend.

Trinity is one of three New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) teams that have yet to drop a game this season – they will attempt to continue their winning ways on Saturday when they visit Hamilton College for a 1 p.m. kick-off.

University of New England: The Nor’easters are one win away from matching their program record for wins in a single season after capturing their last three matchups, including a pair of non-league wins over Alfred State and Bridgewater State.

Last Saturday, UNE scored its first win in program history against Nichols College, thanks to three rushing touchdowns from Jack Mahoney, Jaymeson Maheux, and Connor Sirois.   

UNE travels to Salve Regina this weekend for its second conference tilt of the 2021 season.