November 14th, 2022 3:00am
The regular season is a wrap.
Taking Care of Business
When you play a 0-9 team with a playoff slot on the line, they might be a chance to look ahead and not focus on the task at hand. But that was not the case for Assumption in their 65-21 victory over Post last Saturday.
The Greyhounds took care of business and will now play this weekend in the playoffs. Jake Cady was again the catalyst for the offense. He accounted for six touchdowns and did his usual solid job of running the Assumption offense.
Cady threw for 217 yards and four scores including a 78-yard strike to Quinn Sieger to open the scoring, setting the tone for the day. He also had two rushes that both ended up in the end zone.
The offense ground out nearly 300 yards on the ground as the offensive line continues to open up massive holes for the multitude of runners in the backfield.
For Assumption, the season is extended for another week as they will battle Slippery Rock in the first round of the playoffs.
Down 10-3 with just over three minutes to play and your backup quarterback in the game, the Bentley Falcons faced an uphill battle on the road at Pace last Saturday. But a long completion for a score energized the sideline and they escaped Pleasantville with an 18-10 victory.
Brett Pullman hooked up with Abel Lopes, Jr for a 78-yard touchdown to tie the game at 10 with 3:03 to play. And then in overtime, he found Noah Neville for a touchdown and two-point conversion to win the game for the Falcons.
It was a defensive struggle all afternoon as both teams were held in check on the offensive side of the ball. But Bentley found a couple of holes in the Pace defense late to win the game.
Sal Lupoli Jr and Herve Tshibamba were both tackle machines for the Falcons as they made key stops all afternoon long. Lupoli finished with 14 tackles while Tshibamba was credited with 12 tackles. Both recorded half of a sack apiece.
Bentley finishes the season with a 7-3 overall record and in third place in the NE10 with a 5-2 league record.
Elm City Dominance
It has been a one-sided rivalry for a while as New Haven cruised to a 54-14 victory over Southern Connecticut. It is the second victory of the season for the Chargers over their cross-town rival.
Connor Degenhardt continued his outstanding season as he accounted for five touchdowns and left no doubt that the Chargers were the better team.
He completed just seven passes for 184 yards but three of them ended in the end zone. Two of the scores went to Dev Holmes from 65 and 50 yards out. He also scored twice with his legs including a 28-yard scamper in the opening quarter.
Christopher Ais and Hunter Cobb also had long touchdown runs as the offensive line dominated the line of scrimmage. The rush game totaled 374 yards on the afternoon for the Chargers.
For New Haven, the season is extended for another week as they will battle Shepherd in the first round of the playoffs.
They had a chance to finish the season with a winning record and Saint Anselm responded. The Hawks defeated American International 27-20 last Saturday to win their sixth game of the season.
It was the first time since 2014 that the program recorded six wins in a season. It was even better winning the season finale with their backup quarterback under center.
Anthony Santino finished the game with 261 yards passing and one score by playing a near mistake-free game. The offense gained over 300 yards in the victory and had plenty of opportunities to put up more points on the scoreboard.
The defense came up with huge stops down the stretch to help seal the victory for the Hawks. They recorded four sacks and allowed just 209 yards of total offense.
Saint Anselm finishes the season at 6-4 overall and 3-4 in the NE10.
End of the Road
Congratulations to the seniors and graduate players that suited up for the final time yesterday. Despite only one team making the playoffs, it was another solid season for the NE10.
Five of the eight teams finished the season with at least six wins. Teams won games out of conference and each team except American International benefited from playing the first-year program Post to win at least one out-of-conference game.
Three teams were in consideration for the playoffs over the course of the final weeks of the season. One upset might have given the league more bubble chaos over the final weekend.
The final weekend gave the league a dream scenario. Of course, Assumption was squarely in the playoffs by the virtue of their 8-1 record against Division II schools.
But New Haven needed some upsets to happen, and those upsets happened. Shippensburg took down Gannon. Kutztown took down Slippery Rock and New Haven was on the seventh seed bubble Saturday night. A Concord win in five overtimes added to the chaos. Would it be Concord or New Haven in the seventh slot for SR1?
And then the announcement, New Haven made the playoffs and the team erupted into cheers.
For the NE10, it is the second straight year that two teams made the playoffs. It is another sign that the league continues to make progress with multiple teams playing in the postseason.
But the league will be measured by the wins and losses in the postseason. Teams have made deep runs in the playoffs and here is hoping that 2022 is one of those cases.