Mass. College Sports: Recapping An Exciting 2014-15 Year in Div. III

By Matt Noonan 

It has been an extremely exciting 10 months of Division III College sports.

Tufts University highlighted the school year by winning a trio of championships in men’s soccer, men’s lacrosse and softball. The Jumbos’ softball team accomplished a feat that had never occurred in Division III, winning three consecutive World Series crowns (2013, 2014 and 2015). The men’s lacrosse team captured its second straight title (and third since 2010) by defeating Lynchburg, 19-11, while the men’s soccer team earned its first national championship with a 4-2 win over Wheaton College (Ill.).

Babson College also appeared in the headlines following its amazing come-from-behind win against Trinity College in the Sectional Finals. Trailing the Bantams, 41-33, entering the second stanza, the Beavers rallied by outscoring their opponent, 33-25, which extended the content into overtime. In the extra session, Joey Flannery converted three free throws, John Wickey sank a jumper, Matthew Droney scored a three-pointer and Sam Bohmiller hit a pair of free throws to clinch the victory and send Babson to its first-ever semifinal.

For the second year in a row, the Tufts women’s basketball team advanced to the semifinals. Carla Berube was presented the Pat Summitt Trophy as the 2015 United States Marine Corps/ Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) NCAA Division III Coach of the Year in April. Under Berube, the Jumbos won back-to-back New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) titles (2014 and 2015).

MIT made its initial appearance in the NCAA Tournament and won its first-ever postseason contest against Husson College. Trailing the Eagles, 20-17, Tucker Cheyne booted a 38-yard field goal at the end of regulation that evened the score at 20-20. In the extra session, the Engineers secured the victory when Peter Williams hooked up with Seve Esparrago for a 13-yard touchdown strike.

The Amherst College men’s ice hockey team came within one game of the national championship. The Jeffs earned a semifinal matchup with Wisconsin-Stevens Point following a dramatic 4-3 victory over Norwich University. Mike Rowbotham extended the Jeffs’ season with an overtime goal – his ninth of the season (at the time) – that helped Amherst edge the Cadets. Trinity would up winning the national title, defeating Wisconsin-Stevens Point, 5-2.

A 1-0 victory against Johns Hopkins University sent the Williams College women’s soccer team to the finals. The Ephs, however, fell to Lynchburg in penalty kicks following a scoreless tie after two full halves of soccer, along with a pair of overtime periods. Audrey Thomas scored the lone goal in Williams’ win over Johns Hopkins in the semifinal. Prior to their semifinal and final appearances, the Ephs claimed tournament wins over Lasell College, Ithaca College, Roger Williams University and TCNJ.

Mass. College Football: Harvard Captures ‘The Game,’ MIT Wins First Postseason Contest

By Matt Noonan 

A late touchdown pass from Conner Hempel to Andrew Fischer sealed a 31-24 victory for Harvard University against Yale University on Saturday afternoon at Harvard Stadium in the 131st meeting between the Crimson and Bulldogs.

Trailing 7-3 in the third quarter, Harvard responded with three consecutive touchdowns to earn a 24-7 advantage. Paul Stanton Jr.’s one-yard scamper with 10:06 remaining in the session provided the hosts with their second lead of the afternoon.

Yale’s Tyler Varga jumpstarted a fourth quarter rally with a one-yard TD run with 12:35 remaining. Varga located Morgan Roberts roughly four minutes after his rushing score for an eight-yard touchdown pass before Kyle Cazzetta tied the game at 24-24 with a 33-yard field goal.

With less than a minute remaining, Harvard responded for the final time as Fischer hauled in the game-winning touchdown pass with 55 seconds remaining. Fischer led all receivers with eight receptions for 149 yards and two touchdowns.

Harvard finished their 2014 campaign 10-0 and Ivy League champions.

MIT 27, Husson 20 (OT): The perfect season remains intact as the Engineers’ defense denied a potential game-tying touchdown in overtime to secure their initial postseason victory in program history.

Quarterback Peter Williams completed 20 of 29 passes for 291 yards and two touchdowns, while Justin Wallace rushed for 144 yards and one score.

MIT trailed Husson, 14-10, in the third quarter, but Brad Goldsberry pushed the Engineers ahead, 17-14, with a six-yard touchdown reception with 3:54 remaining in the session.

The Eagles jumped ahead, 20-14, on a 14-yard touchdown reception from Joe Seccareccia to Cody Williams with 5:37 remaining. MIT evened the score at 20-20 with a 38-yard field goal by Tucker Cheyne, forcing an extra session.

In overtime, Williams hooked up with Seve Esparrago for a 13-yard touchdown strike, capping an 11-play, 49-yard drive. On the ensuing possession, Husson drove to the MIT nine-yard line, but came up short on a 4th-and-4 when Seccarecia’s pass fell incomplete.

MIT advances to the second round of the NCAA Div. III Tournament and will play Wesley College next Saturday, November 29.

Framingham State 42, RPI 36: Matthew Silva’s one-yard touchdown run in overtime proved to be the difference as the Rams defeated the Engineers in the ECAC North Atlantic Bowl.

Silva finished the afternoon completing 17 of 34 passes for 273 yards and four touchdowns. He also rushed for 16 yards on three carries.

Framingham State’s Kevin Donahue was named the game’s Most Outstanding Player after making a game-saving tackle in overtime that secure the win for the Rams.

Mass. College Football: Week Eight Honor Roll

By NoontimeSports.com 

With the eighth week of the college football season in the books, it is now time to unveil this week’s Noontime Sports Honor Roll.

Michael Pruneau (Harvard) – In his second straight start, the sophomore signal caller tossed three touchdowns and finished 17-of-29 for 263 yards.

Paul Stanton Jr. (Harvard) – The sophomore tailback rushed for 113 yards on 21 carries and two scores, as well as caught one pass for six yards in Harvard’s 35-16 win against Lafayette.

Peter Pujals (Holy Cross) – The first-year signal caller amassed 287 yards of total offense against Colgate. He finished 25-of-40 for 232 yards and one touchdown, and rushed for 55 yards on 14 carries.

Kevin Arduino (AIC) – Against Bentley, the junior quarterback rushed for four touchdowns and tossed another in the Yellow Jackets’ 42-14 victory. Ardunio finished with 222 yards through the air and 129 yards on the ground.

Sterry Codrington (Stonehill) – The junior defensive back matched his career-high with 10 tackles, seven solo stops, blocked two kicks and had a sack for a loss of 12 yards. He also recorded a pass break-up in the Skyhawks’ dramatic 29-26 victory against New Haven.

Jon Wozney (Assumption) – The senior linebacker registered 10 total tackles in his team’s win against Southern Connecticut.

Jeff Hill (Bentley) – The junior wide receiver hauled in a career-best nine receptions for 124 yards and one touchdown against AIC.

Joe Clancy (Merrimack) – The senior gunslinger completed 38-of-56 passes for 441 yards and six touchdowns, which helped the Warriors top St. A’s.

Brian Harrington (Stonehill) – The junior linebacker recorded a career-high 17 total tackles and eight solo stops against New Haven.

Colin Markus (Stonehill) – It was a career day for the sophomore halfback, who finished Saturday’s game with a career-high 255 all-purpose yards. He rushed for a career-best 172 yards on a career-high 23 carries and one score. Markus also caught the two-point conversion at the end of the game, which pushed Stonehill ahead by three points.

Logan Meyer (Stonehill) – The senior quarterback tossed two of his three touchdowns during the final 15 minutes, which helped Stonehill defeat New Haven. Meyer completed 22-of-41 passes for 288 yards.

Robert Small (Anna Maria) – The senior halfback rushed for a game-best 136 yards on 15 carries and three touchdowns against Mount Ida.

William Ricard (Anna Maria) – The sophomore wide receiver recorded a season-best 199 yards receiving and two touchdowns against Mount Ida.

EJ Isom (Mount Ida) – The first-year running back rushed for 108 yards on nine carries and two scores in the Mustangs’ 56-34 win against Anna Maria.

Jordan Hyman (Mount Ida) – The senior wide-out caught eight passes for 154 yards and two touchdowns.

Kalyn Smithson (Mount Ida) – The junior linebacker registered eight total stops, five solo tackles, three tackles for a loss of 11 yards, one sack for a loss of five yards, one block and one pass break-up.

Robert Baker (Becker) – The senior quarterback tossed two touchdowns and completed 17-of-33 passes for 210 yards against Husson.

Melvin Booker (Becker) – The senior linebacker registered a game-best 14 total tackles, seven solo tackles, and half a tackle for a loss.

E.J. Bennett (Mass. Maritime) – The junior wide receiver shattered the single game receiving record with 274 receiving yards. Bennett hauled in 15 passes and scored three touchdowns against Westfield State.

Richard Ford (Mass. Maritime) – The junior linebacker finish his team’s contest against the Owls with seven total tackles, four solo stops and two sacks for a loss of 12 yards.

Mike McCarthy (Bridgewater State) – The senior quarterback recorded 386 yards of total offense and registered seven touchdowns in the Bears’ 56-28 victory against Plymouth State. McCarthy completed 18-of-29 passes for a career-high 276 yards and tied the school record with five touchdown passes.

Davon Fuller (UMass Dartmouth) – The first-year defensive back recorded four interceptions, one shy of the NCAA Division III record, which helped the Corsairs top Worcester State. Fuller also had four tackles and three solo stops.

Tucker Cheyne (MIT) – The first-year kicker broke his own school record for points in a game by a kicker with 12 points against Nichols College.

John Krafick (WNE) – The senior co-captain recorded a season-high 304 passing yards, as well as tossed three touchdowns in the Golden Bears’ double-overtime win against Union College.

Justin Wallace (MIT) – The junior running back rushed for 167 yards and a career-best tying three touchdowns.

Alex Snyder (Tufts) – The first-year quarterback led the Jumbos to its most points since November 2010, according to Sunday’s New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Football Weekly Release. Snyder completed 22-of-46 passes for 302 yards and four touchdowns. The four touchdowns were the most by a Tufts quarterback since November 2010.