WACBA Men’s Basketball Postseason Awards (Tuesday, March 24th, 2020)

 

WACBABy NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeNation & @WACBAHoops 

Another season of college basketball in the Worcester area is in the books, which means it is time to unveil our end of season Worcester Area College Basketball Association (WACBA) Men’s Basketball awards for our coach, player, and rookie of the year.

Noontime Sports is excited to share our end of season WACBA honors for the seventh consecutive season after being the host site for the organization’s weekly honor rolls, which have appeared every Tuesday throughout the college basketball season. 

Fans of Worcester college basketball are encouraged to follow @WACBAHoops on Twitter for scores, news and more.


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DeAnte Bruton capped an impressive career with the Bison by placing first in program history in field goals made (863). (PHOTO COURTESY: Nichols College Athletics)

Men’s Player of the Year: DeAnte Bruton (Nichols College | Sr. | New London, Conn.): Bruton capped an impressive career with the Bison by securing the top spot in the program’s history for field goals made (863) while securing the second position in multiple categories, including scoring (2,334 points), three-pointers (226) and steals (226). He currently ranks fourth all-time in free throw (382) while placing sixth in the record book in scoring average (20.6 points per game) and seventh in free throw percentage. Bruton, who became the fourth student-athlete in program history to net 2,000th points, secured multiple first-team honorees at the conclusion of the regular and postseason from the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), D3Hoops.com, National Association of Basketball Coaches, and NoontimeSports.com.


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Joe Pridgen averaged 17.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game for the Crusaders this past season. (PHOTO COURTESY: Holy Cross Athletics)

Men’s Rookie of the Year: Joe Pridgen (Holy Cross | Fr.|Winchendon, Mass.): Named the Patriot League Rookie of the Year, Pridgen concluded an impressive first season with the Crusaders that culminated in spots on the league’s all-rookie team and third-team. The Winchendon, Massachusetts native averaged 17.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game while hitting 55.8 percent of his field-goal attempts. He led the team in both scoring and rebounding while finishing fourth in the conference in scoring, sixth in field goal percentage, and seventh in rebounding. His 521 total points scored on the year were the second-most in both Holy Cross and Patriot League history.


Chris Bartley

WPI men’s basketball coach Chris Bartley guided the Engineers to a 20-8 overall record this season, along with an appearance in the NCAA Tournament. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin/WPI Athletics)

Men’s Basketball Coach of the Year: Chris Bartley (WPI): Bartley guided the Engineers to a 20-win season, the program’s third-straight appearance in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) tournament championship, and a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 11th time in his 19-years coaching the WPI men’s basketball team. With a 20-8 overall record, Bartley has now guided the Engineers to 20 wins or more in 14 of 19 seasons.


Fans of Worcester college basketball are encouraged to follow @WACBAHoops on Twitter for scores, news and more. 

D3 Football: NCAA & New England Bowl Predictions

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By Matt Noonan | @NoontimeNation 

Happy Friday, everyone!

I hope you’re as excited as I am for the upcoming NCAA Tournament games tomorrow, along with two New England Bowls.

As usual, Friday’s mean one thing: games to watch and predictions. So, allow me to dish out my picks for the three NCAA Tournament games with New England teams, along with both New England Bowls.

Have a wonderful weekend, stay warm – it is going to be COLD tomorrow – and I’ll do my very best, as usual, to keep you all updated on social media!


NCAA Tournament Games | Saturday, November 23rd, 2019

Brockport at Western New England (12 p.m.): This is a very evenly matched contest – it is even a game the Golden Bears could (and should) win. I’ll give the edge to WNE since they are playing at home, but they will need a big day from their offense, as well as a stellar performance by their run defense. PREDICTION: WNE 31, Brockport 28 

Framingham State at Wesley College (12 p.m.): The Rams have never won an NCAA Tournament game, so perhaps this is the contest Framingham State wins. FSU’s offense and defense have been rather impressive the past few weeks, especially against some talented conference foes, which should translate to a one-point (or two-point) victory on Saturday. PREDICTION: Framingham State 28, Wesley 27 

MIT at Muhlenberg College (12 p.m.): This is a tough draw for the Engineers, who are set to face the fourth-best team in the country, per the latest D3 Football Top 25. MIT has been impressive in their last three outings – they needed to win all three to advance to the postseason – but something tells me the Mules will make a few more plays from the get-go to secure an opening-round win. PREDICTION: Muhlenberg 30, MIT 10 


New England Bowl Games | Saturday, November 23rd, 2019

Dean College at Endicott College (12 p.m.): This one is for the seniors. Look for a monstrous game from the seniors on both sides of the ball to send the Gulls into the offseason with some momentum for the 2020 season. PREDICTION: Endicott 35, Dean 16 

Western Connecticut at WPI (1 p.m.): After losing to the Engineers of Cambridge earlier this month, WPI has looked unstoppable, winning back-to-back games against Coast Guard Academy and Norwich University by a combined score of 124-35. Look for the Engineers to continue their recent momentum against the Colonials in Worcester. PREDICTION: WPI 38, Western Conn. 14 

D3 Football: Zelos Athletics Players Of The Week (Oct. 28th, 2019)

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By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

With the eighth week of the New England Division III Football season in the books, it is time to unveil our offensive, defensive and special teams players of the week, which is powered by Zelos Athletics.


Our Noontime Sports ‘Players of the Week’ post is powered by Zelos Athletics, which uses FusionSport Technology to track athletes’ performance metrics during speed, agility, and plyometric drills. Zelos Athletics also provides individual and team speed and agility training, combined with strength & conditioning training, too


This season, Noontime Sports will select at least one player for our three weekly honors: offensive, defensive and special teamer of the week.

The ‘Players of the Week’ post will be published every Monday throughout the season and shared on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

As usual, stay connected with our Noontime Sports New England football coverage on Twitter by following @Noontime_FB


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Salve Regina University second-year back Joey Mauriello rushed for five touchdowns last Saturday in his team’s win over Becker College. PHOTO COURTESY: George Corrigan

Offensive Player of the Week: Joey Mauriello (Salve Regina University | Halfback | Colts Neck, N.J.): For the second time this season, Mauriello rushed for five touchdowns as the Seahawks defeated Becker College, 45-0, last Saturday in Commonwealth Coast Football (CCC) league play.

The second-year halfback rushed for 202 yards on 27 carries, which is an average of 7.5 yards per play. Mauriello has rushed for 200 yards three times this season while racking up 1,084 yards on 151 carries and 17 touchdowns in seven contests. Additionally, the New Jersey native has caught 11 passes for 80 yards.


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Joshua Smiley and the Rams defense shined this past weekend against Western Connecticut. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin Photography)

Defensive Player of the Week: Joshua Smiley (Framingham State | Defensive End | Springfield, Mass.): Smiley was one of three defenders to record at least one sack last Saturday as the Rams defense shined in a battle of first-place teams.

The junior defensive end recorded a season-high three sacks for a loss of 24 yards, while also recording one forced fumble in his team’s 39-14 win over Western Connecticut. Smiley ended the game with five total tackles – three of those stops were sacks.

Through seven contests this fall, Smiley has tallied 27.0 total tackles, including 18 solo stops and seven-and-a-half tackles for a loss of 39 yards.


RPI and WPI

WPI’s Bryce Wade posted a season-high 12 points last week, which helped the Engineers defeat Merchant Marine, 66-13. (PHOTO COURTESY: WPI Athletics)

Special Teams: Bryce Wade (WPI | Punter/Kicker | Modesto, Calif.): Wade tallied a season-high 12 points off 10 kicks last Saturday against Merchant Marine, including a season-long 39-yard field goal.

Additionally, Wade recorded 10 kickoffs for 606 yards with two kicks resulting in a touchback. He also punted the ball once for 40 yards.

Through seven games, Wade has tallied a career-high 57 points off 36 extra points and seven field goals.

Player Perspective: Nick Ostrowski (WPI)

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Nick Ostrowski will be tasked with leading a talented WPI defense this fall, beginning next Friday, September 6th when the Engineers host Worcester State. (PHOTO COURTESY: Frank Poulin/WPI Athletics)

By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports 

We’re another day closer to a brand new season of New England Division III football – can you feel the excitement in the air?

There is excitement swirling around the WPI Engineers, who enter the upcoming season as a team to watch, both in the region and New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC).

Led by a talented senior class, including linebacker Nick Ostrowski, the Engineers are poised to contend with MIT and Springfield College for the top spot in the conference.

Ostrowski enters his final season with the Engineers with a great deal of optimism – he believes both the offense and defense will be much improved from a year ago after WPI concluded its 2018 campaign with a 6-4 record.

The Charlton, Massachusetts native posted career-highs last fall in total tackles (76.0) and tackles per game (8.4). He credits his success on the gridiron to his coaches and teammates, both past and current, who have inspired him to work even harder this summer, so he can enjoy a successful final season with the Engineers.

What did you do this summer to prepare yourself for a successful (and final) season with the Engineers? 

This summer was a great off-season for the team. Before we left for summer break we challenged each other to come back in the fall bigger, faster, and stronger by religiously following Coach Dan Ross‘s summer program. A lot of guys were working summer jobs around Worcester, so we were able to get a good group of guys together for the lifts and running.

This summer we definitely did more conditioning in order to have more wind for those late game situations. A big focus this summer was also to stay in contact with the team to ensure everyone was doing well and working hard.

You enjoyed one of your best seasons with WPI last fall. What made last season so successful from your perspective? 

It started with some good coaching followed by (a slew of) repetitions in practice last season. I felt like most of the game were slowing down for me, which allowed for better keys and quicker reads.

We have also had a lot of great mentors in (this program) the last couple of years, including Brian Murtagh and Sam Malafronte. Both Brian and Sam were guys we looked up to as younger linebackers, and I hope to replicate their leadership while being a good mentor to the younger guys on our team (this fall). 

We have a great foundation to build off of from one year ago with some younger guys gaining (in-game experience) and reps due to some injuries. I am very excited for this season (and to see) what we can do.

How have preseason practices gone from your perspective? Also, how has the defense looked?

Preseason has been going great with a lot of guys working very hard, but there is still a lot of work to do before our first game. Everyone on the team is focusing on getting better at a few things every day.

Since our team is pretty experienced, we focus on the details and the little things within a practice so we can try and perfect our techniques and movements.

The defense is looking very good (thus far) and we are excited to get on the field (and face future opponents). We are trying some new things out defensively and are being tested both mentally and physically, but we are performing very well under these circumstances.

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Nick Ostrowski (51) is one of many seniors to watch on WPI this fall. (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

What are some goals and objectives you have for both yourself and team this fall? 

A big goal for us this fall is just to constantly get better in each practice and each game. We need to focus on one game at a time and treat each week as if we are 0-0.

We look forward to getting out on the field and hopefully our hard work this summer can translate to (our upcoming) games.

You are one of many seniors on this year’s squad, so how do you and your classmates want to end your time with this program? 

Our senior class is extremely talented – we are also a very close group, too.

We were fortunate enough to be part of the WPI football program for three consecutive winning seasons, which is a pretty special thing, especially when looking at our team’s history. A good ending to our time (in Worcester) would be to continue that (recent success) and to win a NEWMAC crown.

We know we have the tools to achieve these goals, so we just need to go out there and execute on the field.

Finally, your team begins its season against Worcester State next Friday. Excited to compete under the lights for the final time? 

September 6th cannot come soon enough, we are very excited to take the field next Friday (against Worcester State).

The guys are fired up to get out there and show how we improved as a team.


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

D3 Football: WPI Announces Captains For 2019 Season

WPI_Engineers_Logo_By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11

We may be a few months away from a brand new season of New England D3 football, but more news of captains announcements was made earlier this week when WPI unveiled its three student-athletes that will be leading the Engineers in 2019.

As seen on the team’s Instagram account, halfback Sean McAllen, defensive back Sam Casey, and linebacker Nick Ostrowski were each named captain for the 2019 season.

All three were members of the 2018 squad, which finished 6-4 overall, including 4-3 in New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) play.

Similar to our recent posts about teams’ football captains for the 2019 season, here is some information on all three student-athletes that will be tasked with leading the Engineers next fall.

  • Sean McAllen (Halfback | Prospect, Conn.): McAllen concluded the 2018 season with 576 rushing yards on 144 carries (64.0 yards per contest) and nine rushing touchdowns while hauling in a pair of scores on 17 receptions for 223 receiving yards. McAllen ended the season as on the Worcester Area Football Association’s second team, while also earning first-team all-conference from the NEWMAC.
  • Sam Casey (Defensive Back | Winchester, Mass.): The Winchester native posted a career-high 65.0 total tackles last fall, including a career-best 23 assists. He concluded the 10 game schedule with 42 solo stops, seven tackles shy of matching his career-high of 49, which he recorded during the 2017 season. Additionally, Casey recorded three tackles for a loss and a trio of interceptions, along with a pair of pass break-ups. For his effort, Casey was tabbed first-team all-conference by the NEWMAC, while also earning a spot on the Worcester Area Football Association’s first-team defense.
  • Nick Ostrowski (Linebacker | Charlton, Mass.): Ostrowski concluded his team’s 2018 campaign with a career-best 76.0 total tackles, along with a career-high 36 assists. The Charlton native tallied 40 solo stops, while also recording four tackles for a loss for 29 yards and two forced fumbles. Ostrowski was named first-team all-conference by the NEWMAC and earned a first-team nod on defense from the Worcester Area Football Association.

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