Saturday's Game: Maine Maritime Academy (0-7, 0-5 NEWMAC) at Springfield College (6-2, 4-1 NEWMAC), 12:00 pm, Stagg Field, Springfield, Massachusetts.
Series History: This is just the second meeting between the two teams, Springfield holds the 1-0 all-time advantage after taking last season's matchup.
Last Meeting: Maine Maritime Academy football fell to Springfield 62-0 last season on November 2, in NEWMAC action on Ritchie Field.
Springfield's No. 1 nationally-ranked rushing attack led the Pride to the win, amassing 549 of the team's 585 yards of total offense.
The Pride scored on their first three drives to take a 41-0 advantage at the half.
The Mariners held Springfield to just one score in the third quarter, but fell in the conference matchup.
Jacob Doolan led the Mariners with 37 yards on eight carries, including a long-run of 21 yards.
Jordan Wilcox led Springfield College with 213 yards on 14 carries and three touchdowns, and Tyler Hyde contributed 118 yards on seven carries and a pair of scores.
Defensively, Cody O'Brien led the Mariners with 14 tackles, including 10 solo stops, and teammate Derek Breunig (Westbook, Maine) tallied eight tackles, including three solo stops. Trenton Bouchard (Winslow, Maine) brought down his fourth-career interception, late in the second quarter and also chipped in with six tackles. Kaleb Watkins (Rome, Maine) added four tackles and a fumble recovery.
Nick Giorgio led the Pride with eight tackles, including a tackle for a loss of one yard and a forced fumble, while Christian Zotti added seven tackles, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery, as well as a tackle for a loss of 13 yards.
Maine Maritime Academy's Last Game: Maine Maritime Academy football fell to Norwich University, 15-7, on October 20 in NEWMAC action at Ritchie Field.
Maine Maritime's defense forced a fumble early in the first quarter, but the Cadets held the Mariner offense to a three-and-out. TJ Morrill (Durham, Maine) picked off Norwich's quarterback on the next Cadet possession, but the Mariners were forced to punt once again.
Andrew Plata (Cumberland, R.I.) intercepted the Cadets on their next possession but Norwich held the Mariners to their half of the field and capitalized on a team safety on the Mariners next possession to take a 2-0 lead at 11:34.
The Mariners orchestrated a goal-line stand to keep the game at 2-0, but Bailey Sawyer's (Westbrook, Maine) pass was intercepted on the Mariners opening play of the next possession, setting up a field goal for the Cadets. Norwich added another field goal in the second quarter to take an 8-0 lead into halftime.
The teams were scoreless in the third quarter, but the Cadets scored on their first possession of the fourth quarter to take a 15-0 lead. The Mariners got on the board with 9:51 remaining in the game when Sawyer connected with Dominic Casale (Freeport, Maine) for a 33-yard touchdown reception and Maxwell Horton's (Eliot, Maine) extra point attempt was good. Norwich's early lead held, and the Cadets claimed the 15-7 victory.
Sawyer collected 144 passing yards on 15 completions and a touchdown while Casale tallied 60 receiving yards on five catches and a touchdown.
Defensively, Terrell Thomas (Auburn, Maine) led the Mariners with 15 tackles, including 10 solo stops, a tackle for a loss and a broken up pass. Trenton Bouchard (Winslow, Maine) had nine tackles (six solo).
Norwich's quarterback Matt Dunn had 261 yards on 23 completions and a touchdown, while Connor Bourque led the Cadet running backs with 162 yards on 30 carries and Lavontae Decius led the receivers with 85 yards on six catches.
Defensively, Owen McKenna led the Cadets with 10 tackles, including five solo stops
Springfield College's Last Game: The Springfield College football team picked up a 23-11 victory at Catholic in conference play on October 20.
The Pride totaled 381 yards of offense, including 344 yards on the ground. Hunter Belzo totaled 148 rushing yards and a score as he averaged over six yards per carry, while also completing 2-of-3 pass attempts for 37 yards and a score. Tim Callahan hard from the fullback spot, totaling 123 yards on 22 carries, and Jakai Whittingham hauled in a 36-yard touchdown. Defensively, Nick Giorgio was a stalwart on the defensive line, racking up a team-best 11 tackles, including six tackles-for-loss, that resulted in a loss of 29 yards. Marlowe Scott added 10 stops for a Pride defense that had 11 tackles-for-loss in the win.
After Catholic opened the game with an onside kick attempt that resulted in Springfield getting the ball on the Cardinals 48 yard line, the Pride brought the ball inside Catholic's 20 yard line in five plays. Christian Humulock then cashed in on a 36-yard field goal to give the visitors a 3-0 edge just 2:40 into the game.
On the ensuing drive, Catholic went 75 yards in nine plays, chewing up nearly five minutes off the block before Brady Berger connected with Pedro Garcia for a 34-yard touchdown strike. The Cardinals went for two, and Berger found Johnny Hecht for the conversion to put Catholic on top, 8-3, midway through the first.
Another short kickoff by Catholic gave Springfield the ball on their own 44 yard line. Eight rushing plays later, Skyler Bateman barreled his way in from nine yards out for his first collegiate score as the Pride regained a 10-8 edge with 3:58 to play in the quarter.
After stopping Catholic and gaining possession late in the first, Springfield manufactured a nine-play, 62-yard drive that lasted nearly four minutes. The drive was capped off by a touchdown strike from Belzo to Whittingham to put the visitors on top, 17-8, with 11:51 remaining in the first half.
The Pride punched in what proved to be their final score of the day after they took over on their own 42 yard line with 1:28 on the clock. Springfield needed just six plays to find paydirt as Belzo scampered in from seven yards out with 34 seconds on the clock. The extra point was no good and the Pride took a 23-8 advantage into the break.
For the second-straight game, Springfield was held off the scoreboard in the final two quarters, but the Cardinals were able to score early in the fourth quarter as they finished off a 12-play drive with 12:13 remaining in regulation with a 32-yard field goal. In the final 15 minutes of play, Springfield's defense held Catholic to -14 rushing yards as the Pride held on for another conference victory.
The Mariners: Quarterback Bailey Sawyer leads the Mariners with 886 passing yards on 67 completions and six touchdowns. Dominic Casale leads the Mariners' receivers with 437 yards on 33 catches and five touchdowns. Cooper Chiasson leads the Mariners running backs with 205 yards on 86 carries.
Defensively, Derek Breunig leads the Mariners with 64 tackles, including 35 solo stops and nine tackles for a loss of 27 yards. The senior outside linebacker also has a sack for 10 yards and four broken up passes.
As a team the Mariners average 184.4 yards per game, including 146.4 passing yards per game.
The Pride: As a team Springfield averages 326.1 yards of offense a game, including 303.1 rushing yards. They are averaging 25.9 points per game, while allowing opponents to score 17 points per game. Quarterback Hunter Belzo leads the team with 170 passing yards on eight completions and two touchdowns, and 746 rushing yards on 144 carries and 10 rushing scores.
Defensively, Nick Giorgio leads the team with 59 tackles, including 37 solo stops and 10.5 sacks for 63 yards. Giorgio also has 19 tackles for a loss, three forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, three broken up passes and a block.