NCAA D3 Football Tournament: Inside The Brockport-Western New England Matchup

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Alec Coleman and the Western New England football team will host the College of Brockport on Saturday in the opening round of the NCAA D-III Tournament. (PHOTO COURTESY: Chris Marion)

By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

It’s time to highlight our final New England D-III football team, which will be competing this weekend in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. And that team is the Western New England Golden Bears, who won their third-straight Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) title this fall with late-season wins against Becker College and Endicott College. WNE also defeated Husson University in its season finale to conclude its conference slate without a single blemish.

The Golden Bears will face The College of Brockport in the opening round – the Golden Eagles captured their third-straight Empire 8 Conference (E8) title a few weeks ago with a 16-7 win over Alfred State.

Below are a few notes about Saturday’s match-up, including some stats (and numbers) on both teams, as well as players to watch.


Brockport (8-2) at Western New England (9-1) 

Gametime/Location: Brockport will travel to Western New England on Saturday, November 23rd with kickoff scheduled for 12 p.m. The game will be played in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Rankings: The Golden Eagles are currently receiving votes in the latest D3Football.com Top 25 Poll. Western New England enters its 11th contest of the season unranked or receiving votes.

Conference Affiliation: Brockport competes in the Empire 8 Conference – they finished 5-1 in league play this season. Western New England is a member of the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC). The Golden Bears won every conference tilt this fall.

Last Appearance in the NCAA Tournament: Brockport advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament last season following an opening-round win against Framingham State. The Golden Eagles’ season concluded against RPI, which defeated Brockport, 21-13. The loss to the Engineers was the team’s first of the 2018 season.

Western New England advanced to the first round last season but saw their run toward a national championship conclude with a 42-24 setback to Frostburg State. The Golden Bears’ meeting with the Bobcats was the first NCAA Tournament appearance under the direction of coach Jason Lebeau.

Inside the Numbers with Brockport: The Golden Eagles are averaging 29.60 points per contest while limiting opponents to 13.20 points per game … Brockport has recorded 112 rushing first downs this season while yielding just 22 to opponents … The Brockport defense has limited opposing rushing attacks to just 695 yards, which is an average of 28.3 yards per game … Brockport has recorded 40 offensive touchdowns this season while opponents have scored just 18 … Brockport has held the ball for close to two-thirds of every contest this season. They usually have the ball for 34:18 per contest, while opponents are on offense for an average of 25:41.

Inside the Numbers with Western New England: The Golden Bears are 5-0 at home this season – they were also 5-0 in Springfield, Massachusetts last season, too. WNE’s last home setback came against Springfield College on September 2, 2017. Since falling to the Pride, the Golden Bears have won 15 games at home … WNE is averaging 488.2 yards of total offense this season … The Golden Bears are averaging 40.6 points per game while limiting opponents to just 27.1 points per contest … WNE is averaging 290.0 passing yards per game while rushing for 198.2 yards per contest … The Golden Bears’ opponents have averaged 384.3 yards per game, including 230.8 passing yards.

Players to Watch on Brockport: 

  • Jason Hellwig (QB): Hellwig will be under center Saturday after starting seven games this season. He enters the game with 735 passing yards and one touchdown pass.
  • Jala Coad (RB): Coad led all rushers with 822 rushing yards on 186 carries and 16 touchdowns. Coad is averaging 82.20 rushing yards per game.
  • Imhotep Cromer (WR): Cromer leads the receiving core with 30 receptions for 543 yards and three touchdowns. He is averaging 60.33 receiving yards per game.
  • DaQuan Hubbard (WR): Hubbard is second on the team in receiving yards (469) and is one of four receivers to catch one touchdown.
  • Alex West (LB): West leads the team with 56 total tackles. He has recorded 33 solo stops, 17.0 tackles for a loss of 71 yards, and six quarterback hurries.
  • Lawrence Jenkins (LB): Jenkins is second on the team in tackles for a loss (10 for 64 yards). He has tallied 42 total tackles, including 23 solo stops, four quarterback hurries, and one interception.

Players to Watch on Western New England: 

  • Alec Coleman (QB): The senior signal-caller has completed 146 of 214 passes for 1,994 yards and 16 touchdowns. He has also rushed for 305 yards and nine touchdowns.
  • Jamyre Soberanis (RB): Soberanis has rushed for a team-high 929 yards on 139 carries and 14 touchdowns. He is averaging 92.9 yards per contest.
  • Steven Fedorchak (WR): The third-year receiver is first on the team in receptions (53), receptions per game (5.9), receiving yards (979) and receiving touchdowns (10).
  • Adam Raza (WR): Razza is second on the team in receptions (39), receiving yards (779) and touchdown receptions (five).
  • Kieran Lombard (K): Lombard has recorded 82 points off 52 extra points and 10 field goals. His longest field goal was a 44-yard kick.
  • Erich Keutmann (LB): Keutmann leads the team with 119.0 total tackles, including 60 solo stops, seven tackles for a loss of 27 yards, and three sacks for a loss of 10 yards. He also recorded three pass break-ups.
  • Joshua Salem (LB): Salem is second on the team in total tackles (85.0). He has produced 54 solo stops and three-and-a-half tackles for a loss of seven yards while registering two interceptions, one pass break-up, and one block.

NCAA D3 Football Tournament: Inside The Framingham State-Wesley Matchup

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Framingham State quarterback Adam Wojenski will be one of a few players to watch on the Rams this Saturday. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin/Framingham State University Athletics)

By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

It’s time to highlight the second New England D-III football team that will be competing this weekend in the NCAA Division III Tournament. And that squad is the Framingham State University Rams, which enter the postseason on an eight-game winning streak.

The Rams, who captured the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) this fall with some important late wins over Bridgewater StateMassachusetts Maritime Academy, and Western Connecticut, will be making their fifth appearance in the NCAA Tournament, as well as their second-straight trip as Framingham State competed last season against The College of Brockport.

Below are a few notes about Saturday’s match-up, including some stats (and numbers) on both teams, as well as players to watch.


Framingham State (8-2) at Wesley College (9-1) 

Gametime/Location: Saturday, November 23rd at Wesley College, Dover, Delaware. Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m.

Rankings: Wesley is currently the tenth best team in D-III, according to the latest D3Football.com Top 25 Poll. Framingham State was not ranked nor receiving votes in this week’s poll.

Conference Affiliation: Framingham State competes in the MASCAC, while Wesley is a member of the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC).

Last Appearance in the NCAA Tournament: The Rams’ 2018 season concluded in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament with a 40-27 setback to Brockport. The Golden Eagles secured a 24-0 lead at the break before the Rams trimmed the deficit in the second half by outscoring the hosts, 27-16.

Quarterback Adam Wojenski concluded the contest 28 of 58 for 450 yards and two touchdowns – he did have three interceptions – while Brockport’s Joe Germinerio completed 19 of 40 passes for 320 yards and three touchdowns.

Wesley did not compete in the NCAA Tournament last season but did advance to the second round in 2017 following a 45-27 win over RPI. The Wolverines’ run toward a national championship concluded with a 49-28 setback to Brockport.

Inside the Numbers with Framingham State: The Rams have produced 346 points this season while allowing 176 … The 346 points are the most any MASCAC team produced this fall. They also led the conference in points per game (34.6), touchdowns (51), rushing yards (1,728), rushing yards per game (172.8), few yards allowed per game (274,8), interceptions (14), and fewest rushing yards allowed per contest (90.5) … Framingham State will be making its fifth appearance in the NCAA Tournament – they have never won a postseason contest. Saturday’s meeting with Wesley will be the team’s second in the postseason as the two squads met in 2015 with the Wolverines winning by a score of 42-22.

Inside the Numbers with Wesley College: Wesley is currently second in the NJAC with 337 points – Salisbury University is first with 417 points. The Wolverines are averaging 33.7 points per game … Wesley is second in the NJAC in scoring defense, limiting opponents to 157 points (15.7 points per game) … Wesley is second in the conference in total offense – they are averaging 441.7 yards per game … The Wolverines are first in total defense in the NJAC, yielding an average of 249.7 yards per game … Wesley boasts the second-best rushing offense in the NJAC behind Salisbury and is first in the conference in passing offense .. Saturday’s postseason contest will be coach Chip Knapp‘s first as the team’s head coach since taking over for coach Mike Drass last season.

Framingham State Players to Watch: 

  • Andrew Fennelly (O-Line): Named the MASCAC Football Offensive Lineman of the Year.
  • Devaun Ford (RB): Named the MASCAC Offensive Rookie of the Year. Ford rushed for 1,003 yards and nine touchdowns in 10 games. He is averaging 100.3 yards per contest.
  • Joshua Onujiogu (DE): Named the MASCAC Defensive Player of the Year. He has recorded 44.0 total tackles and eight sacks in nine contests this season.
  • Adam Wojenski (QB): The senior signal-caller has completed 184 of 303 passes for 2,455 yards and 27 touchdowns (eight interceptions). He has also rushed for 429 yards on 88 carries and four touchdowns.
  • Jacob Maher (TE): The Worcester State transfer leads the Rams in receptions (54), receptions per game (5.4), receiving yards (792) and touchdowns (eight).
  • Cully Curran (DB): Leads the defense with 67.0 total tackles … has recorded 39 solo tackles, including seven-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 22 yards, one fumble recovery, one interception, and five pass break-ups.
  • Anthony Behonick (LB): Second on the team in total tackles (49.0) … the junior linebacker has recorded 37 solo stops, including eight-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 16 yards, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, three interceptions, and one pass break-up.

Wesley College Players to Watch:

  • Drew Fry (QB): The first-year signal-caller will get the start on Saturday, as noted (and confirmed) by WDEL 1150AM/101.7FM. Fry, who was a three-year starter for Middletown in Delaware, was named the 2018 offensive player of the year.
  • Marcellus Pack (RB): The senior tailback has rushed for 595 yards on 102 carries and seven touchdowns.
  • Ruhann Peele (WR): The senior wide-out leads the team in receptions (81), receptions per game (8.1), receiving yards (1,141), and receiving touchdowns (12).
  • Corterris Simpson (WR): Second on the team in receptions (45), receptions per game (4.5), receiving yards (522), and touchdowns (five).
  • Nick Bruhn (PK/P): Has recorded 63 points on nine field goals and 36 extra points. His longest field goal was a 31-yard kick.
  • Dante Daniel (LB): The third-year linebacker leads the defense in total tackles (83.0) … Daniel has recorded 43 solo tackles, including eight-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 23 yards, one forced fumble, three fumble recoveries, one interception, and seven pass break-ups.
  • Shymere Vessels (DE): Vessels has recorded 57.0 total tackles, including 26 solo stops, 10 tackles for a loss of 29 yards and one sack for a loss of six yards.

D3 Football: 10 Games to Watch (Week 2)

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Jake Wood and the Nichols College Bison host Coast Guard Academy on Friday, September 13th. (PHOTO COURTESY: Nichols College Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

Week two is ready to begin this afternoon and evening with some intriguing match-ups.

Last week, we didn’t do so well with our picks. In fact, we finished 2-8 – can we bounce back this week? We certainly hope so – we discussed our not-so-great picks on this week’s Noontime Sports Football Friday Podcast (Week Two Preview).

Anywho, let’s dish out some picks and enjoy another weekend of New England Division III Football.


Week Two | Friday, September 13th & Saturday, September 14th

Rankings based off of this week’s New England Division III Top 20 Football Poll

No. 9 Coast Guard Academy at No. 15 Nichols College (Friday, September 13th @ 5 p.m.): Both teams scored opening-day wins, but the Bison offense was very impressive against Dean College. Look for Jake Wood to add to his touchdown total this afternoon (and evening). PREDICTION: Nichols 28, Coast Guard 21 

No. 2 Western New England at Westfield State (Friday, September 13th @ 7 p.m.): The Golden Bears scored an impressive opening day win and should continue that momentum against the nearby Owls. PREDICTION: WNE 30, Westfield State 13 

SUNY Maritime at Mass. Maritime Academy (Friday, September 13th @ 7 p.m.): The Privateers needed a field goal as time expired to defeat Maine Maritime. Will they need a late score to edge the Buccaneers in Buzzards Bay? PREDICTION: Maritime (N.Y.) 21, Mass. Maritime 18

Becker College at Worcester State (Friday, September 13th @ 7 p.m.): First-year halfback Randy Morgan will be the player to watch in this Worcester area meeting. PREDICTION: Becker 28, Worcester State 14 

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Keyshaun Robinson and the Husson University Eagles begin their 2019 season in Dartmouth, Massachusetts against the Corsairs. (PHOTO COURTESY: Monty Rand Photography)

No. 8 Husson University at UMass Dartmouth (Saturday, Sept. 14th @ 12 p.m.): Coach Nat Clark and the Eagles will be tasked with slowing down an air attack that produced six touchdowns last week. Husson’s balanced offense should help the Green and Gold score an opening day win for their first-year head coach. PREDICTION: Husson 28, UMass Dartmouth 24 

Bates College at No. 4 Amherst College (Saturday, September 14th @ 1 p.m.): The Bobcats are ready to take the so-called ‘next-step,’ but will need their defense to jumpstart their offense against a tough Mammoths squad. PREDICTION: Amherst 28, Bates 17 

No. 1 Trinity College at No. 18 Tufts University (Saturday, Sept. 14th @ 1:30 p.m.): The Bantams begin their title defense and the start of a four-peat with an opening day win against the Jumbos. PREDICTION: Trinity 27, Tufts 14 

No. 14 Williams College at No. 17 Middlebury College (Saturday, September 14th @ 2 p.m.): Both teams are expected to challenge Trinity for the top spot in the conference this fall. This is not an easy start for the Ephs, who are determined to return to their 2017 form but look for a late field goal to be the difference in this must-watch NESCAC clash. PREDICTION: Williams 17, Middlebury 14 

RPI at No. 6 WPI (Saturday, September 14th at 2:30 p.m.): The Transit Trophy is on the line in this one, so look for both sides to be amped and ready to make an extra play when needed. PREDICTION: RPI 28, WPI 17 

No. 20 Dean College at No. 12 Western Connecticut (Saturday, September 14th @ 6 p.m.): The Colonials needed an extra session to edge William Patterson one week ago, while Dean fell to Nichols in its home-opener. This is an important contest for both teams, but in the end, we think the Colonials have a slight edge. PREDICTION: Western Conn. 28, Dean 14 

D3 Football Preseason: Teams On The Rise

D3 Teams On The Rise

By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

The first day of August usually means one thing: football has officially returned.

We’re a few weeks away from starting up a brand new college football season – are you excited? I am, which is why I am very excited to begin our preseason football coverage with ‘Teams on the Rise’ in New England Division III.

Let me (and Noontime Sports) know if you agree, disagree or think we left a squad out by posting a comment below!


Anna Maria College: Year number three could be a turning point for coach Dan Mulrooney and his AMCATs, who have high aspirations heading into the 2019 season. With a slew of talent back from last year, as well as a wide-open conference race, one should certainly keep an eye on this squad, which faces some serious challenges next month with games against RPI and Union College. Additionally, a home date with Nichols College will be one to keep an eye on, as well.

Colby College: The Mules are my team to watch in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) this fall. Second-year coach Jack Cosgrove should be able to lead his squad to at least four, possibly five wins this season. Colby finished 3-6 last season – it was the most wins they have recorded since finishing 3-5 in 2016 and 4-4 in 2013.

Dean College: With just two players gone to graduation, these Bulldogs should be equipped (and prepared) to challenge Maritime (N.Y.) for the top spot in the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC). Coach Steve Tirrell‘s squad has improved each season since becoming a full-time Division III member in 2017.

Middlebury College: The Panthers will once again be in the middle of the NESCAC pack this fall – the Blue and White graduated 17 student-athletes from their 2018 squad, but should return some key pieces from last season. Middlebury finished 5-4 last season after posting six or seven wins in 2016 and 2017, respectively, and could certainly provide some challenges to a few conference early season favorites, including Amherst CollegeTrinity College, and Williams College.

Nichols College: Perhaps this is the year the Bison take that ‘next step’ and challenge Endicott College, Husson University, Salve Regina and Western New England for the top spot in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC). The Bison finished 5-5 last season and seem to have generated some serious momentum this offseason, which should bode well for coach Dale Olmsted‘s squad.

Norwich University: Could the Cadets challenge Springfield College and others for the top spot in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC)? I think so. Norwich returns some impressive talent on both sides of the ball, which will make this team hard to beat. I have high hopes for the Cadets, who will attempt to match their 2014 squad, which finished with seven wins.

University of New England: The Nor’easters appeared to get stronger as the 2018 season progressed. Similar to Nichols, they face the daunting task of taking down four solid teams to secure the top spot, but I think UNE should certainly improve on their initial season as a varsity program and finish 2019 with at least three or four wins.


Stay connected with our New England football coverage on Twitter: @Noontime_FB 

The Early Preseason Outlook: Husson Eagles

Jacob HUSSON EAGLES

By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

Our ‘Early Preseason Outlook’ coverage rolls on with a closer look at the Husson University Eagles, who begin a new era in program history this fall as a member of Commonwealth Coast Football.

The Eagles, who previously competed in the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference (ECFC), will begin their 2019 season on the second Saturday of September – that would be September 14th, to be exact – when they visit UMass Dartmouth for a 12 p.m. kick-off.

The Eagles’ 2018 Season: Husson commenced its season by winning two of four contests before stringing together six consecutive wins to secure the ECFC title, as well as a spot in the NCAA Division III Tournament.

The Eagles’ national championship hopes were dashed one week after beating Plymouth State in their season finale with a 38-14 setback to RPI in the opening round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

Yet, despite the loss, the Eagles again proved they can compete with the best, both in New England and outside the region.

2018 was the final season for coach Gabby Price, who announced months after his team’s final contest that he would be stepping down. Nat Clark was named the program’s new coach roughly two weeks after Price’s announcement.

The 2019 Outlook: As noted above, the Eagles will begin a new chapter in program history this fall as a member of the Commonwealth Coast Football league – Husson will compete against some talented New England squads, including Endicott CollegeSalve Regina University and Western New England.

Husson will certainly be a team to watch again this year, however, they do have some holes to fill, beginning at quarterback.

Cory Brandon, who was the team’s signal-caller the past few years, has graduated – he was one of 14 student-athletes to graduate this past spring – so perhaps we could see David Morrison under center or Frank Veino. Both student-athletes appeared in games last year, however, Morrison competed in all 10 contests, so it’s likely we will see him against the Corsairs in week two.

In addition to identifying a new starting quarterback, the Eagles will need to find replacements for wide receivers Kyle Gaudet and Ty Bassett, as well as linebacker Elvin Suazo.

Keyshaun Robinson could become the go-to target for Morrison or Veino – the senior tight end finished second on the team with 38 receptions for 526 yards and seven touchdowns. Additionally, Tyler Halls, who transferred from Western New England, could be a wide receiver to watch this fall, as well. Halls enjoyed a successful first season with the Eagles last year, catching 28 passes for 318 yards and three touchdowns.

In addition to some new wide-outs and tight ends stepping up, look for the Eagles to rely on its ground game. Husson returns Miece Loureiro and Solomon Hassen, who combined for 1,783 yards and four touchdowns.

Husson returns a slew of offensive linemen, including Collin SpenceAidan Asher, and Jacob Cameron, which should help the Eagles continue its success from last year, both on the ground and through the air.

Ace Curry should be the player to watch on defense – the Lewiston, Maine native finished second on the team last season in total tackles. Kaleb Caron, who stuffed the stat sheet with 51.0 total tackles, including seven tackles for a loss for 36 yards and 2.5 sacks, will also be a player to watch, too.

Husson’s Schedule: After traveling to UMass Dartmouth in week two, the Eagles will host WPI in their season-opener on September 21st before finishing the month of September with a trip to Morrisville State.

Husson will dive into conference play in the first week of October with a trip to Becker College followed by three consecutive home games, including an important matchup with Endicott on October 26.

Husson will end the regular season with a trio of marquee matchups, beginning with a visit to Nichols College followed by a home date with Salve Regina. The Eagles will visit Western New England on Saturday, November 16th with hopes of competing one week later in either the NCAA Tournament or New England Bowl.

Players to Watch: David Morrison (Quarterback/Ashland, Mass.), Frank Veino (Sanford, Maine), Keyshaun Robinson (Tight End/Brooklyn, N.Y.), Tyler Halls (Wide Receiver/Lisbon, Maine), Miece Loureiro (Halfback/Westbrook, Maine), Solomon Hassen (Halfback/Los Angeles, Calif.), Collin Spence (Offensive Line/Windsor, Conn.), Aidan Asher (Offensive Line/Portsmouth, R.I.), Jacob Cameron (Offensive Line/Conway, N.H.), Ace Curry (Defensive Back/Lewiston, Maine), Kaleb Caron (Linebacker/West Gardiner, Maine), and Devin Pickett (Kicker/Sidney, Maine).


Stay connected with Noontime Sports’ football coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_FB.