Football Looks For Third Consecutive Win On Saturday
Coast Guard Academy Bears (1-1, 0-0 FFC) at
Springfield College Pride (2-0, 1-0 FFC)
Saturday, Sept. 28, 2002 • 1:30 p.m. • Benedum Field
Friends and Family Weekend
Game Day Quick Facts
The Pride leads the series, 10-4.
The Last Meeting:
SC defeated the Bears, 17-7, on Sept. 22, 2001, in New London, Conn.
Last Time Out:
SC defeated Kings Point, 26-13, on Sept. 21; Coast Guard lost to RPI, 34-12, on Sept. 21.
About the Pride:
SC goes for its fourth consecutive win on Saturday. The last two times the Pride started 2-0 in the Freedom Football Conference (1998 and 2000), it won the league championship ... SC is ranked in the top 10 nationally in five statistical categories, and is the nation's leading rushing team (437.0 ypg) ... not surprisingly, SC is dominating the FFC statistically. The Pride leads the league in nine categories, including scoring offense (47.5 ppg), scoring defense (6.5) and total offense (452.5). SC ranks second in nine other categories ... the Pride is listed under 'Others Receiving Votes' in this week's AFCA Division III Coaches Poll. SC garnered 49 points. At No. 15, Western Connecticut is the lone FFC team in the national poll. Next week's opponent, Ithaca, is ranked No. 11 ... after losing at home to Coast Guard in 1942 and 1963, the Pride has been ungracious hosts. SC has won the last five meetings in Springfield by an average score of 44.4-10.4. In the last three meetings at Benedum Field (1996, '98, 2000) the Pride has won by an average margin of 46.8-10.
Sophomore quarterback Michael Judge was selected the FFC Offensive Player of the Week (Sept. 22). In his third consecutive start vs. Kings Point (Sept. 21), Judge rushed for a game-high 142 yards and one touchdown on 14 carries (10.1 ypc). On the final play of the first quarter, Judge raced 97 yards for a touchdown. He also completed 2-of-3 passes for 30 yards ... the Pride is 3-0 in Judge's last three starts, including a 49-35 win over then No. 16 Union in the final regular-season game of 2001. In those three games, SC has scored 144 points (48 ppg) ... Judge is fourth in the FFC in rushing (87.5 ypg) and 10th in total offense (97.5 ypg) ... Judge is the second SC player to win the FFC weekly award in three weeks. Sophomore HB Will Davis earned the honor on Sept. 9.
Standing On Top:
In addition to being Division III's top rushing team, the Pride ranks in the top 10 nationally in four other categories:
143.5 ypg (rank: 4th)
Pass Efficiency Defense:
61.9 rating (rank: 4th)
47.5 ppg (rank: 6th)
6.5 ppg (rank: tied 10th)
The Pride is tied for 25th in rushing defense (66.5 ypg) and 30th in total offense (452.5 ypg).
On The Front Line:
d3football.com honored the SC offensive line as its 'Offensive Line of the Week' (Sept. 11). The Pride's offensive front of C Nick Asermelly, RT Ben Bristol, RG Matt Fritze, LG Andrew MacFadyen and LT Carl Mintken paved the way for 553 rushing yards against Salve Regina (Sept. 6) ... four starters on the offensive line are back from 2001, including three-year starters Bristol, MacFadyen and Mintken ... SC's veteran offensive line also provides quarterbacks with tremendous protection. The Pride allowed a conference-low eight sacks in nine games in 2001, and has allowed just one sack this season.
The Pride led the FFC in rushing for the seventh consecutive season at 278.7 ypg in 2001, which was sixth nationally. SC was 6-1 in games when it rushes for more than 300 yards over the past two seasons ... SC captured its second consecutive NCAA Division III rushing title in 2000, and third in five seasons. Only three other teams have won it three-or-more times. SC averaged a Division III-record 427.5 ypg on the ground in 2000. In 1999, the Pride averaged 375.3 ypg and, in 1996, SC rushed for 351.2 ypg.
In the win over Salve Regina (Sept. 6), the Pride recorded its first shutout since 1996. SC blanked Western Connecticut, 16-0, six years ago to the day ... the SC defense stepped up in big games last season. At No. 25 Western Connecticut (Oct. 6), SC held the highest scoring team in the FFC to just 88 yards and no offensive touchdowns. Against No. 21 Ithaca (Sept. 29), which came in averaging 39.7 ppg, SC did not allow a touchdown until there was 5:29 left in the game.
Sophomore HB Will Davis (100.5 ypg) and sophomore QB Michael Judge (82.5 ypg) are the third and fourth leading rushers in the FFC ... junior PK Greg Switaj, who is 4-for-4 on field goals attempts this season, is third in scoring (11.5 ppg) in the conference.
Head Coach Mike DeLong On Coast Guard:
"The Bears' offense presents several problems for us, including quarterback Matt Gulley, who is a very good player. We have to be ready because they really hustle and run to the ball."