Big NEFC Boyd Division battle Saturday as Western New England hosts tough Curry

More news about: Western New England
9-24-11 Bryce Brown (A)
At the halfway point in the season, Bryce Brown ranks second in the NEFC in total offense with a 212.5 yards per game average.
9-24-11 Nick Fox-Edele (A)
Nick Fox-Edele is third in the NEFC in kick scoring with 28 points.
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Two of the top teams in the New England Football Conference (NEFC) will collide when Western New England hosts Curry at 1:00 p.m. Saturday (Oct. 8) in an important Boyd Division battle.

The game features the stingy defense of the Golden Bears against the high-flying offense of the Colonels.

Western New England has a 4-1 record (2-0 in the division) after running their winning streak to three games with a big 12-9 road victory against Salve Regina.

"I was really happy about the win," said WNE coach Keith Emery. "Salve is a good team and to beat them at their own place is a significant victory. It took a quarter, but our defense came around. We played really well with our backs to the wall."

Emery hopes his hard-working team makes another solid showing on both sides of the ball against Curry.

"We need to continue our consistent performance on offense. Last week we had our fewest yards penalized and ran for 180 yards against a strong defense. That's a good day. Defensively, Curry has several talented and explosive players, and we need to contain them," he noted.

Western New England is third in the NEFC in total defense (250.6) and fourth in scoring defense (17.0). The Golden Bears also lead the conference in sacks (19).

Sophomore linebacker Brandon Ormsby (Windsor, CT) leads the squad with 37 tackles and has a pair of forced fumbles and pass breakups. Senior linebacker Todd Krolikowski (Bristol, CT) has 31 tackles and a NEFC best 11.5 stops for losses. Krolikowski and Ormsby recorded nine and eight tackles, respectively, against the Seahawks last Saturday.

Junior defensive end James Georges (Stamford, CT) has 25 tackles with 11 resulting in losses and a league-leading six sacks. He played a key role in last year's 27-23 win at Curry recovering a fumble at the one-yard line with less than a minute remaining in the game.

Junior defensive backs Nicholas Silvester (Weatogue, CT) and Phil Tsopanides (Fairfield, CT) are tied for second in the league with three interceptions apiece.

Western New England has been steady on offense ranking eighth in the 16-team conference in total yards per game (297.4) and scoring (22.4).

Senior quarterback Bryce Brown (Guilford, CT) is second in the NEFC in total offense (212.5), tied for fifth in scoring (36 points), seventh in passing efficiency (125.0 rating), and 10th in both passing (850 yards) and rushing (370 yards).

Freshman receiver Andrew Walz (Groton, CT) had another nice performance against Salve Regina with two catches for 50 yards and ranks 10th in the conference with a team-high 13 receptions for 266 yards for a 20.5 average that is the best in the league.

Sophomore backup quarterback John Krafick (New Milford, CT) is third in the league with a 36.9 punting mark. Freshman Nick Fox-Edele (Springfield, MA) is third in kick scoring with 28 points; he has connected on 13-of-14 points after touchdowns and five-of-six field goals.

Curry fell to 3-2 (1-1 Boyd) after suffering a 55-7 home loss against undefeated Endicott a week ago.

Despite scoring only seven points, Curry is second in the NEFC in total offense (429.8) and tied for fifth in scoring (26.8). The Colonels, who are second in passing offense (230.0), will provide a strong test for the WNE secondary that is third in league in pass defense (132.0) and first in interceptions (12).

Sophomore running back Phil Bigelow (East Orange, NJ) is having a terrific season averaging 7.5 yards a carry. He is ranked sixth in the league with 574 yards and three touchdowns, and sixth in all-purpose yards (603). Junior back Bruce Vieira (Pelham, NH) has 141 yards rushing and three scores along with 15 receptions for 146 yards and three touchdowns.

Another player to watch is junior receiver Rob Bambini (Westwood, MA) who is second in the NEFC with 35 receptions for 402 yards and four touchdowns. Senior quarterback Mark Gilson (Mansfield, MA) has completed 69.4% of his passes for 593 yards and five TDs, and is second in the conference with a 176.3 rating.

Sophomore defensive back Luke Soccorso (Foxboro, MA) leads the squad with 39 tackles followed by junior linebacker Jason Genece (Waltham, MA) with 37 stops (10 for losses and two sacks). Freshman Chris Frissore (Wilmington, MA) has made 17-of-19 extra points and one-of-two field goals, and ranks sixth in the NEFC with 20 points.

Western New England and Curry have a long tradition dating back to the Golden Bears' first varsity campaign in 1981. The Colonels, who won nine games in a row from 2001-2009 prior to last year, lead the series by an 18-9 margin.
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