Saturday's Game: Maine Maritime Academy (0-4, 0-1 NEWMAC) at WPI (4-0, 1-0 NEWMAC), 1:00 pm, Alumni Stadium, Worcester, Mass.
Series History: WPI holds a 4-0 record over the Mariners including a 30-7 victory in last year's meeting in Castine on September 29, 2018.
Last Meeting: Maine Maritime Academy football fell to WPI 30-7, on September 29, 2018 afternoon in NEWMAC action at Ritchie Field.
After a three-and-out on their opening drive, the Mariner defense came up big with an interception from Sam Billings on WPI's first possession, but the offense came up empty.
WPI added their first touchdown of the game with 2:24 remaining following a 5-play, 63-yard drive. Quarterback Julian Nyland connected with Nic Rossi for a 16-yard touchdown reception and Spencer Herrington's extra point was good.
The Engineers doubled their lead on their next drive, on a 14-yard touchdown carry from Sean McAllen. Herrington added a pair of field goals in the second quarter and the guests took a 20-0 advantage into halftime
WPI added another touchdown in the third quarter and John Bennett picked off Nyland on the next Engineer drive.
The Mariners finally found the end zone with 1:11 remaining, when Bailey Sawyer found Dominic Casale (Freeport, Maine) for a 71-yard touchdown toss and Maxwell Horton (Eliot, Maine) added the extra point.
Sawyer ended the afternoon with 128 yards on 10 completions and a touchdown, while Casale pulled down six catches for 100 yards and a touchdown.
Defensively Terrell Thomas (Auburn, Maine) led the Mariners with nine tackles, including seven solo stops and Rardy Rarn chipped in with nine tackles, five solo. Derek Breunig tallied seven tackles, including five solo stops, 3.5 tackles for a loss of 16 yards and a sack.
Nick Ostrowski led the Engineers with eight tackles, including three solo stops and a tackle for a loss of a yard.
Maine Maritime Academy's Last Game: Maine Maritime Academy football fell 62-13, to U.S. Merchant Marine Academy last Saturday afternoon in the NEWMAC opener for both teams at Ritchie Field.
Maine Maritime amassed 274 yards of total offense, including 234 passing yards. Quarterback Nikolas Moquin (Goffstown, N.H.) led the Mariners with 144 yards on 11 completions and a touchdown.
With the loss, Maine Maritime falls to 0-4 overall and 0-1 in the NEWMAC, while USMMA improves to 2-1 on the season and 1-0 in conference play. Maine Maritime returns to action next Saturday, October 5 at WPI for a 1:00 pm conference matchup.
Merchant Marine totaled 600 yards of offense, tallied 28 points in the first quarter and took a 49-0 lead into halftime en route to the 62-13 victory.
John Friend (Islip, N.Y.) led Maine Maritime's receivers with 71 yards on four catches and a touchdown, while Dominic Casale tallied 63 yards on five catches and a touchdown and quarterback Andrew Haining (Palmyra, Maine) amassed 90 passing yards on seven completions and 29 rushing yards on four carries.
Defensively Terrell Thomas led the Mariners with 14 tackles, including seven solo stops and 1.5 tackles for a loss of three yards, Cam Lantagne (Biddeford, Maine) added 11 tackles, including six solo stops, and a sack.
Merchant Marine's Krystian Abbott amassed 115 yards on three completions and ran for 65 yards and two touchdowns, while Maxwell Michaels recorded 126 rushing yards on nine carries and a touchdown and Joe Vitelli added 86 receiving yards on two catches
Charles Mustain led USMMA defensively with five tackles, and Jayden Fernandez added four tackles.
Moquin connected with Casale for eight yards to tally Maine Maritime's first score of the game early in the third quarter and Haining found Friend for a 26-yard touchdown toss late in the fourth quarter to account for the other MMA touchdown.
WPI's Last Game: Connor Field ran for two scores and Julian Nyland tossed a pair of touchdown passes as WPI remained undefeated by going on the road and defeating host Springfield 35-21 in the NEWMAC football opener for both squads last Saturday afternoon.
Field accounted for the only scoring of the opening quarter when he took it in from one yard out one play after an Austin Pesce 49-yard punt return gave the Engineers literally the best starting field position possible at the Springfield one.
The second quarter featured quick responses to scores. WPI went ahead 14-0 after Nyland hit Billy Mitchell with a 29-yard touchdown pass only to see the Pride respond 40 seconds later when Chad Shade rushed 23 yards for a score just after Patrick Ladas got the Pride going with a 59-yard scamper. The final minute of the first half was frantic as SC evened the game at 14-14 when Isaiah Cashwell-Doe scooted in from four yards out with 56 seconds remaining, but the Engineers struck back with four quick Nyland completions in five tries, finished off with a 39-yard touchdown pass to Nic Rossi 32 seconds later.
The third quarter started the same way as the second quarter ended. After the hosts punted, WPI embarked upon an 11-play, 65-yard drive capped by a Field 2-yard touchdown plunge to go up 28-14 but was countered quickly as Springfield's Kejuan Farquhar returned the ensuing kickoff 99-yards to the house to make the margin seven again at 28-21. WPI fullback Phillip Durgin accounted for the only touchdown of the fourth quarter when he blasted in from a yard out with 8:41 to go to move the score to 35-21.
Field finished with 116 yards, just a yard short of a new career-best, on 30 carries. It was his second 100 yard+ game of the season and fourth of his career. Nyland completed 16-for-30 passes for 236 yards and added 40 rushing yards on five carries. Mitchell posted career highs of five catches for 104 yards while Rossi and Brendan Chipman each hauled in four passes for 76 and 39 yards respectively. Clark Ewen also chipped in with three catches.
Special teams was a highlight to for Engineers as Bryce Wade was a perfect 5-for-5 on PATs and averaged 42 yards on his four punts, with three landing inside the 20, and Pesce averaged 18.4 yards per punt return.
Sam Casey and Nick Ostrowski shared team-high tackles honors with 10 apiece with Casey adding an interception, a forced fumble and a tackle-for-loss. Steve Mey totaled nine tackles while Tommy Feraco added eight and Lou Duh seven and Mike McGoff registered the game's only sack.
Cashwell-Doe (93 yards), Ladas (90 yards) and Shade (79 yards) all saw significant time running the ball for the Pride. AJ Smith was outstanding on defense for Springfield, posting a game-best 11 tackles, including one for loss, and picking off two passes.
Overall, WPI had the advantage in time of possession (34:1-25:51) and edge in total yards (404 - 305) and first downs (22-13).
The Mariners: Maine Maritime averages 252.3 yards, including 206.5 passing yards, per game, while averaging 15.3 points per game.
The Mariners are 32 percent (18-56) on third down conversions and 44 percent (4-9) on fourth down conversions.
Nikolas Moquin leads the Mariners offense with 129 passing yards per game, totaling 516 yards on 41 completions and five touchdowns. Dominic Casale leads the receivers with 69 receiving yards per game, totaling 276 receiving yards on 23 receptions and five touchdowns.
Terrell Thomas leads the Mariners defensively with 39 tackles, including 26 solo tackles, and 1.5 tackles for a loss of two yards. Spencer Baron (Mariaville, Maine) has 27 total tackles, including 17 solo stops, one tackle for a loss of three yards, a fumble recovery and a broken up pass.
The Engineers: WPI, ranked first in the Grinold Chapter New England Division III Top 10, is now 4-0 for the eighth time in the program's 130-year history and just the second time in 36 seasons.
The Engineers average 380.3 yards, including 198.5 passing yards, per game and average 30.8 points per game. WPI averages 47 percent on third downs and 33 percent on fourth downs.
Julian Nyland leads the Engineers with 759 yards on 53 completions and four touchdowns, Nic Rossi leads the receivers with 204 yards on 11 catches and two touchdowns, while Connor Field leads the running backs with 339 yards on 70 carries and five touchdowns.
Defensively, Nick Ostrowski leads the Engineers with 33 tackles, 16 solo and one tackle for a loss of two yards, a fumble recovery, an interception and two broken up passes, while teammate Steve Mey has 26 tackles, 15 solo, and three broken up passes.