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Football Returns Home For NEWMAC Battle With Coast Guard

Football Returns Home For NEWMAC Battle With Coast Guard

Springfield, Mass. – October 4, 2018 – After opening up the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) portion of its schedule with consecutive road games, the Springfield College football team will play its conference home opener on Stagg Field on Saturday, October 6 at 12 pm against Coast Guard.

Last Week...

The Springfield College football team grinded out a 33-16 victory against Norwich in a New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) game on Sabine Field on Saturday.Traveling to Norwich for the first time since 2008, Springfield improved to 4-1, 2-0 in conference play as it posted 347 rushing yards and had the ball for over 35 minutes in the game.  The Pride ended up with three rushers eclipsing the 100-yard mark, as Hunter Belzo (Middletown, Conn.), Tim Callahan (Enfield, Conn.), and Jared Baron (New Rochelle, N.Y.) all got into triple digits. Baron rushed for a game-high 121 yards, with Callahan close behind with 111 yards and a touchdown, while Belzo rushed for an even 100 yards and found the endzone three times. 

Springfield, reigning NEWMAC Defensive Player of the Week AJ Smith (Rahway, N.J.) led the defense with eight tackles, including two sacks.  Marlowe Scott (Dorchester, Mass.) added seven stops and Nick Giorgio (Cumberland, R.I.) had four tackles, two sacks, and a blocked kick. As a team, Springfield put up five sacks and three interceptions while holding Norwich to under 200 yards of total offense. 

 About the Matchup...

In a series that dates back to 1963, Springfield has won 13 of the last 17 meetings, with the losses coming in 1942, 1963, 1997, and 1999.

Last year, Springfield jumped out to a 24-0 halftime lead and never looked back, to cruise past Coast Guard, 38-7.  The Pride, who entered the game with the top rushing offense in all of college football with 433.8 rushing yards per game, finished with 471 yards of total offense with 69 carries for 441 rushing yards while Coast Guard was held to 153 total yards, just seven of those on the ground. Jordan Wilcox (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) had a monster day on the ground for the Pride, racking up 187 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries, while classmate Jake Eglintine (Ballston Spa, N.Y.) added 106 yards and a score. Hunter Belzo (Middletown, Conn.) found the end zone twice while rushing for 66 yards, and Rich Williams (Wethersfield, Conn.) totaled nine tackles, a sack, and an interception to lead the defensive unit. 

NEWMAC Action

In last year's inaugural season of football in the NEWMAC, Springfield went a perfect 7-0 in league play.  In seven conference games last season, Springfield averaged 47 points and nearly 510 yards of offense, while allowing just 8.6 points per game to conference foes. In the Pride's nine NEWMAC games over the past two years, it has only allowed double-digit points five times, with Catholic's 20 points last season being the most ever allowed. 

Among the National Leaders...

Category Rank Statistic
Passing Yards Per Completion 1st 25 YPC
Rushing Offense 6th 313.8 YPG
Passes had Intercepted  32nd 2
Winning Percentage  34th 0.800%
Time of Possesion  35th 32:44
Sacks Allowed  45th 1.20
Total Defense  47th 289.4
3rd Down Conversion Pct Defense 47th 0.299%
Kickoff Returns  48th 22.35 YPR
     
Fumbles Recovered Tom Casey 5th (2)
Rushing Touchdowns Chad Shade 14th (7)
Combined Kick Returns  Ryan McCarthy 23rd (325)
Total Touchdowns Chad Shade 28th (7)
Total Points Scored Chad Shade 29th (42)
Scoring Chad Shade 32th (10.5)
Rush Yards Per Carry Chad Shade 37th (6.37)
Rushing Yards Per Game Chad Shade 44th (100.3)
Punting Jakai Whittingham 45th (38.9)

 

Takeaways...

In the win over Norwich, Springfield's defense delivered three interceptions, and it marked the ninth-straight game dating back to last season that the Springfield defense has produced a turnover.  In that stretch, the Pride had registered 13 interceptions and 10 fumble recoveries and is plus-eight in turnover margin. The last time the Pride registered three interceptions in a game was twice in 2017 against Mount Ida and WPI. Ryan McCarthy (Palmer, Mass.) tallied two interceptions at Norwich, marking the first time since Marlowe Scott (Boston, Mass.) picked off WPI twice in 2017 that a member of the Pride had two interceptions in a game.

Strong Starts...

Springfield is off to another great start to begin the conference portion of its season as it picked up a pair of NEWMAC victories in its last two outings.  Springfield will look to string together three-straight conference games to begin the season for the second-straight season and third time since on 2006 on Saturday.  In Springfield's four victories this season, they are averaging 373.25 yards per game and holding opponents to 249.75 yards per game, including just 94.5 rushing yards per game.

In the Air...

Entering their sixth game of the season, Springfield has more wins than pass completions this season.  Through five games, Springfield has recorded four wins, as the Pride has a 4-1 record and its three quarterbacks have combined to complete two passes on 16 attempts for a total of 50 yards.  The Pride ranks No. 1 in all of Division III football with its 25 yards per completion.

Connecting From Deep...

This season, senior Christian Humulock (Narragansett, R.I.) has all three of his field goal attempts, connecting on one in each of the last three games.  However, it was his 45-yard field goal in the setback to Union that has him ranked sixth among all Division III kickers this year for longest field goal made.  In fact, the 45-yard field goal was the longest a Springfield College kicker has made since Greg Switaj drilled a 45-yard attempt on Oct. 11, 2002 at home in an 18-15 win over Western Connecticut.  The program record for longest field goal is held by Jim diMello, who converted from 52 yards against Cortland in 1976.  Additionally, classmate Blake Heller (North Bellmore, N.Y.) has connected on 9-of-14 field goal attempts in his time on campus, owning a long of 38 yards.

 

About the Bears...

Coast Guard is averaging 25.6 points per game and 393.2 yards of total offense, 220.6 passing and 172.6 rushing. The Bears rushed for a season-high 241 yards rushing in the win last week.  Junior quarterback Ryan Jones is 80 of 142 for 1,024 yards with four touchdowns and nine interceptions this season. Jones is second on the team with 289 rushing yards on 64 carries and is averaging a NEWMAC best 262.6 yards of total offense per game. Sophomore wide receiver Justin Moffatt leads the NEWMAC with 36 receptions and leads the conference and is 13th nationally 525 receiving yards with one touchdown.  Senior linebacker Jake Behne leads the team with 41 tackles, 21 solo while junior cornerback Patrick Crowley is second with 36 tackles and a team-high 29 solo. The Bears are allowing 379.8 yards per game, 273.8 yards passing and 106 yards rushing.  Senior kicker Cole Austin is tied for the national lead in field goals per game with two, and is 10 of 11 on the season while making 12 of 13 extra points, while Chip Crowley is averaging 41.5 yards per punt to lead the NEWMAC and rank 7th nationally this season.