Football Set To Close Out 2005 Campaign Saturday Afternoon With Northeast-10 Outing At Merrimack, Listen To Action Live On Free Teamline Webcast
November 3, 2005
2005 Stonehill College Football
Game #10: Stonehill (3-6, 3-5) at Merrimack (4-5, 3-5)
Saturday, November 5, 2005
Warrior Field, North Andover, Massachusetts
12:30 p.m. EDT
THE GAME: Stonehill looks to end the season on a winning note this afternoon as the Skyhawks tangle with the Merrimack Warriors in a Northeast-10 Conference encounter. Stonehill enters todays action after dropping a 38-20 Northeast-10 decision to American International in its home finale last Saturday afternoon at W.B. Mason Stadium, as the Skyhawks used a late first half offensive burst to open up a 20-19 lead at the break after a three-yard touchdown run by sophomore Greg Borsari (Kingston, Mass./Plymouth North) and a 28-yard scoring pass from Borsari to senior Mike Plichta (Milford, Mass./Milford). Sophomore J.J. Niamkey (Quincy, Mass./Quincy) accounted for the other Stonehill touchdown of the day with an 83-yard kickoff return in the opening quarter of action. Borsari amassed 234 yards of total offense in the setback for the Skyhawks, including 195 yards through the air, while Plichta hauled in five receptions for 91 yards in extending his single-season school record with his 11th touchdown grab. Niamkey added nine total tackles (six solo) and three pass break-ups to go with his kickoff return score, while sophomore Mike DeBye (Burlington, Mass./Austin Prep) paced Stonehill defensively with 13 total tackles, including nine solo stops. Merrimack enters todays action after dropping a 41-7 Northeast-10 decision to LIU-C.W. Post at Hickox Field in Brookville, N.Y.
HONOR ROLL HONOREE: Sophomore J.J. Niamkey (Quincy, Mass./Quincy) was named to the Northeast-10 Conference weekly honor roll on Monday for his efforts in Stonehills 38-20 setback to American International last Saturday. Niamkey returned a kickoff 83 yards for a touchdown and added nine total tackles (six solo) to go with three pass break-ups on defense.
LAST MEETING: Stonehill and Merrimack last met on November 6, 2004 at Skyhawk Field, and the Warriors posted a 42-7 victory over the Skyhawks. Matt Rainone accounted for the lone Stonehill score of the day, as he hauled in a 43-yard fourth quarter touchdown pass from Greg Borsari in amassing 90 receiving yards on the day. Junior co-captain Mike Furey (Simsbury, Conn./Simsbury) paced the Skyhawks defensively with 13 total tackles for the contest.
Merrimack 42, Stonehill 7
Saturday, November 6, 2004
Skyhawk Field, Easton, Massachusetts
Merrimack (8-2, 7-2 Northeast-10)211470- 42
Stonehill (2-7, 2-7 Northeast-10)0007- 7
MER:Jarrod Pelletier 1 yd run (Ryan Kelley kick)11:39 1st
MER:Pelletier 22 yd run (Kelley kick)2:19 1st
MER:Reynaldi Audate 33 yd pass from Frank Novogratz (Kelley kick)1:45 1st
MER:Matt Winick 1 yd run (Kelley kick)12:45 2nd
MER:Elfren Quiles 17 yd pass from Novogratz (Kelley kick)8:03 2nd
MER:Aaron Clark 48 yd pass from Novogratz (Kelley kick)0:57 3rd
STO:Matt Rainone 43 yd pass from Greg Borsari (Sean Donahue kick)12:10 4th
THE SERIES: Todays game marks the 10th varsity meeting between Stonehill and Merrimack on the gridiron, and the Warriors hold a 6-3 edge over the Warriors in the all-time series. Stonehill won the first two match-ups from Merrimack during the 1996 and 1997 campaigns, but the Warriors won the next three contests before Stonehill evened the series with a 2001 victory in North Andover, setting up the last three Merrimack triumphs. Here are the previous results in the all-time series between the two schools:
Stonehill 33, Merrimack 6(1996 at North Andover)
Stonehill 16, Merrimack 13(1997 at North Andover)
Merrimack 7, Stonehill 3(1998 at Easton)
Merrimack 25, Stonehill 0(1999 at North Andover)
Merrimack 45, Stonehill 28(2000 at Easton)
Stonehill 24, Merrimack 7(2001 at North Andover)
Merrimack 17, Stonehill 14(2002 at Easton)
Merrimack 23, Stonehill 0(2003 at Easton)
Merrimack 42, Stonehill 7(2004 at Easton)
HOME FIELD DIS-ADVANTAGE: Incredibly, the home team has won only once in the previous nine games in the series between Stonehill and Merrimack, that lone result coming in 1999 when the Warriors shutout the Skyhawks in North Andover. All three of the Skyhawks series triumphs have come on the road, while Merrimack is perfect in five visits to Easton all-time.
THE SKYHAWKS: Senior co-captain Ryan Griffith (Hanson, Mass./Whitman-Hanson) leads Stonehill in rushing with 220 yards and one touchdown, while freshman Cruz Parsons (Signal Hill, Calif./Long Beach Poly) has completed 53-of-103 passes for 553 yards and nine touchdowns. Plichta has hauled in 43 receptions for 597 yards and 11 scores, while junior Vincent Delaney (Baltimore, Md./Calvert Hall) paces the Skyhawks defensively with 62 total tackles, including 39 solo stops, to go with a team-leading four interceptions to date.
THE WARRIORS: Freshman J.D. Wild leads Merrimack in rushing with 553 yards and four scores, while sophomore Colin Temple has completed 172-of-325 passes for 1,928 yards and 20 touchdowns. Sophomore Elfren Quiles has 45 receptions for 715 yards and nine touchdowns, while junior Matt Mikaitis paces the Warriors defensively with 83 total tackles.
HEAD COACH CHRIS WOODS: Chris Woods is in his second season as Head Football Coach at Stonehill College. A 1991 graduate of Davidson, Woods is the fifth varsity head football coach in the programs history and came to Easton after earning 2003 American Football Coaches Association Division II Regional Coach of the Year accolades after guiding Mansfield (Pa.) to an 8-3 mark in 2003. Woods, who sports a 5-13 (.278) mark at Stonehill and an 18-31 (.368) career collegiate mark in four-plus seasons, is assisted by Bill Garvey, Tom Pileski, Mark Nutley, Tom MacDonald, Odell Jones, Ryan Picken and Jason Fernald. Woods is 0-1 during his career against Merrimack.
HEAD COACH JIM MURPHY: Jim Murphy is in his third season as Head Football Coach at Merrimack College. A 1998 graduate of Northeastern, Murphy sports a career mark of 18-10 (.571), and he is assisted by Bill Tucker, Mark Pizziferri, Mike Cella, Dan Ballou, John Boughner, Mike Gennetti, Michael Caira, Joe Payne, Scott Burgess, Gavin Monagle, Joe Cain and Reid Eichelberger. Murphy is 2-0 during his career against Stonehill.
THE GOLDEN BOY: Freshman Cruz Parsons (Signal Hill, Calif./Long Beach Poly) was selected as the recipient of The Boston Globe Division II-III Gold Helmet Award as presented by the New England Football Writers on October 5th for his efforts in Stonehills 41-7 victory over Saint Anselm on October 1st. In just his second collegiate start, Parsons completed 25-of-33 passes for 275 yards and a school-record tying six touchdowns, as he amassed 97.2 percent of the Skyhawks total offense for the contest in accounting for 316 of Stonehills 325 yards. Parsons becomes the fifth recipient of The Boston Globe Gold Helmet Award in Stonehill history, as he joins former Skyhawk standouts Tony DelloIacono (1994), Mike McLucas (1994), Dan Field (1995) and Tyrone Jefferson (2000) in copping the accolade.
ON CRUZ CONTROL: Cruz Parsons tied the Stonehill single-game record for touchdown passes with his six scoring strikes in the October 1st win over Saint Anselm, as he tied the mark set nearly 11 years to the day (October 2, 1994) by Tony DelloIacono, who fired six touchdown passes in Stonehills 57-20 victory over M.I.T. Parsons accounted for 97.2 percent of the Skyhawks total offense in just his second collegiate start, as he amassed 316 of Stonehills 325 yards of total offense for the day in adding 41 rushing yards to his 275 passing yards.
PLICHTED APART: Mike Plichta set a Stonehill single-game record with five touchdown receptions in the October 1st win over Saint Anselm, as he bettered the previous mark shared by three other individuals of four scoring catches. Plichta, who entered the game with three touchdown receptions in the Skyhawks first four contests, amassed 179 yards on 12 receptions total and tied former Bentley standout Dallas Malls Northeast-10 single-game record for touchdown receptions first set in 2001. Plichtas 30 points scored ranks as the second highest single-game total in conference history, and his 12 catches ranks as the sixth highest single-game mark in Northeast-10 history.
MIKED UP: In addition to earning the nod as Northeast-10 Offensive Player of the Week on October 3rd, Mike Plichta was also named as the ECAC Division II Offensive Player of the Week and was chosen as the Don Hansens Football Gazette Division II National Offensive Player of the Week. Plichta has already broken the Stonehill single-season record for touchdown receptions with 11 to date, as his two scoring catches on October 8th at Bryant enabled him to pass Dan Cahills mark of eight touchdown receptions set during the 1995 season.
FAST START: Stonehills 2-0 start was its second straight under Chris Woods, as the last time the Skyhawks began consecutive campaigns at 2-0 came in 1996 and 1997.
FAST START, PART TWO: Stonehills 3-1 conference start was is its best in four seasons, as the Skyhawks league win total is its highest since the 2001 squad posted three conference triumphs.
FORTY-SOMETHING: Stonehills 41-point effort in the October 1st win over Saint Anselm was the Skyhawks highest single-game offensive output since a similar 41-7 triumph over Assumption during the 2002 campaign.
IN-VINCE-ABLE: Junior Vincent Delaney (Baltimore, Md./Calvert Hall) recorded the fourth highest single-game tackles total in Stonehill history after amassing 20 total stops in the October 8th setback at Bryant. Delaney, who leads Stonehill with 62 total tackles to date, was named as the Northeast-10 Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts on October 10th and leads the Skyhawks as well with four interceptions on the season. Delaney was also tabbed as Don Hansens Football Gazette Division II National Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts against Bryant.
AYE, AYE CAPTAINS:Senior Ryan Griffith (Hanson, Mass./Whitman-Hanson) and junior Mike Furey (Weatogue, Conn./Simsbury) have been named as co-captains for the 2005 edition of Stonehill football. Griffith amassed 159 yards of total offense last season and is a threat both as a rusher and receiver, while Furey ranked fifth on the team in total tackles in 2004 with 54 stops, including 31 solo tackles and four sacks.
NEW INDUCTEES: The 1995 Stonehill football team was inducted into the Colleges Athletic Hall of Fame on September 30th in ceremonies that took place on campus. The 1995 edition of the Skyhawks posted a school-record nine victories and captured the Eastern Collegiate Football Conference title with a come-from-behind 39-36 victory at Bentley that snapped the Falcons 37-game winning streak in the process.
OFF TO THE RACES: Sophomore Mike DeByes (Burlington, Mass./Austin Prep) 100-yard interception return for a touchdown in the September 4th season-opening win at Assumption tied the Stonehill record for longest interception return, as Matt Walsh also turned the trick for a touchdown in 1999, ironically also at Assumption.
THE OPENING LINE: Stonehill is now 6-12 in 18 varsity season openers, as the Skyhawks are 3-6 in home openers and 3-6 in road openers over that time span. Stonehill has now won consecutive season openers for the first time since 1996-1997, as the Skyhawks also bested Assumption in those contests.
W.B. MASON STADIUM: Stonehills new, multi-purpose athletic facility on campus, the W. B. Mason Stadium at Stonehill College, was formally dedicated on September 10th prior to the Skyhawks home opener against Pace. W.B. Mason President and CEO Leo Meehan, who is also a Stonehill trustee and alumnus, announced that the Company and its alumni employees have committed $1.5 million toward cost of the almost $4 million project. In a location just north of the Sally Blair Ames Sports Complex, the 2,400-seat W.B. Mason Stadium at Stonehill College is one of the premier athletic facilities in the Northeast 10-Conference. The multi-purpose outdoor facility has a 400-meter, eight-lane track, artificial turf, specialty areas for track and field events, and lighting for evening use, as the playing field itself was dedicated as well as Timothy J. Coughlin Memorial Field, a member of Stonehills Class of 1980 and former football standout. The Skyhawk football, field hockey and reigning NCAA national champion womens lacrosse teams will play their games at W.B. Mason Stadium, which will also serve as the home for Stonehill mens and womens track and field.
THE ALL-TIME LEDGER: In 17-plus varsity seasons of competition, Stonehill has compiled an overall record of 70-96-3 (.423) while capturing three Eastern Collegiate Football Conference championships in 1989, 1991 and 1995. Thirty-six of those victories came during the six-year tenure of former head coach Connie Driscoll.
THE NORTHEAST-10 CONFERENCE:Stonehill will compete in football for the fifth straight season under the umbrella of the Northeast-10 Conference, which is comprised of Division II institutions from Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Other football-playing members of the Northeast-10, which evolved from the Eastern Football Conference, are American International, Assumption, Bentley, Bryant, LIU-C.W. Post, Merrimack, Pace, Saint Anselm and Southern Connecticut.
SKYHAWK TALK: Todays contest marks the 50th of Chris Woodss head coaching careerDelaneys 20-tackle effort against Bryant was three shy of the single-game school record of 23 stops set by Kevin Broderick in 1991. The tackles total was the highest by a Skyhawk since Steve Sheeler recorded 21 stops against Merrimack in 2003Ironically, both Cruz Parsons and Tony DelloIacono captured their respective Boston Globe Gold Helmet Awards in contests in which each set the school single-game record with six touchdown passesStonehill has won two of the last three match-ups with Saint Anselm dating back to 2003The Skyhawks have drawn nearly 6,000 fans in their first four contests at W.B. Mason Stadium, including the September 10th sellout crowd of 2,400 for the facilitys formal dedicationThe September 24th game with Iona marked the 15th contest that Stonehill played against a team classified in NCAA Division I-AA play currently, as the Skyhawks are 8-7 in those match-ups. Prior to facing the Gaels, Stonehills last game against a I-AA foe came in the 2003 season opener against NortheasternStonehill picked up its second straight and third overall victory in the nine-game series with Pace with the September 10th triumph over the Setters, as for the fifth time in the last six seasons the meeting between the two squads was decided on the games final playThe September 4th victory was Stonehills 13th in 18 varsity series meetings with AssumptionWith his 102-yard effort in the season-opener against Assumption, junior Cliff Mason II (Santa Ana, Calif./Santa Ana Valley) became the first Stonehill rusher to amass 100 yards in a game since Bob Powell turned the trick with 114 yards in last years season opening triumph over AssumptionSophomore Sean Donahue (Plymouth, N.H./Plymouth) has converted half of his career field goals against Pace, and he booted a career-long 56-yard punt on October 8th against Bryant Woods joined Connie Driscoll as the only two coaches to be victorious in their Stonehill debuts with last years triumph over Assumption. Driscoll captured his first contest in 1993 with a 36-6 win over Nichols Stonehill is 34-49-2 (.412) in 85 home outings and 36-47-1 (.434) in 84 road contests since the inception of varsity football in 1988.
SKYHAWKS ON THE WEB: For the second straight year, Stonehill Football contests will be broadcast live via Free Teamline, a service provided by Teamline/TRZ Sports Services of Kent, Ohio. By logging-on to the Stonehills Official Athletics web site of www.stonehillskyhawks.com (powered by Presto Sports), listeners can follow all of the action of Skyhawk Football on the internet free of charge. The Stonehill Football webcasts will be broadcast live by the longtime Metro South radio duo of Charlie Bergeron and Bill Carpenter, who called Brockton High football on WBET Radio in Brockton for six years. Bergeron, who is also the voice of Stonehill Basketball, has been a part of the Metro South sports scene for over three decades, while Carpenter is a veteran of the local sports scene at all levels. All 10 Skyhawk games will be available via Free Teamline.
AROUND THE NORTHEAST-10 TODAY:LIU-C.W. Post at AssumptionNoon
Pace at Saint PetersNoon
Saint Anselm at American International12:30
Bryant at Southern Connecticut1:00