/seasons/2012/contrib/201211072iss3i

Perfect Record And Outright Title At Stake In Trinity Football's Season Finale This Weekend

More news about: Trinity (Conn.)

Hartford, Conn., Nov. 7, 2012 – The Trinity College football team, which scored 20 fourth-quarter points to defeat Amherst, 32-20, last weekend and maintain sole possession of first place in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) at 7-0, will complete the 2012 season at the Wesleyan University Cardinals on Saturday, November 3 at noon. Trinity, coached by Jeff Devanney (7th Season, 48-7), is looking to extend its 12-game winning streak against the Cardinals and win its ninth straight game overall. The Bantams clinched a share of their seventh NESCAC crown last weekend, but will win the title outright with a win at Wesleyan or a loss by 6-1 Middlebury against winless Tufts on Saturday. Trinity, which posted a 45-7 win against Middlebury on October 27, won at least a share of the NESCAC Football Championship title in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, and 2012. Last fall in Hartford, junior RB Ben Crick (Middlebury, Conn.) returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown, and the Bantam defense held Wesleyan to 107 yards in a 27-0 Bantam victory. Trinity, which holds a 58-52-1 record in the 111-year history between the teams, is ranked No. 1 in the New England Poll and No. 6 in the ECAC Lambert Meadowlands Poll, while 5-2 Wesleyan is ranked No. 9 in New England.

Junior RB Evan Bunker (Topsfield, Mass.) rushed for 215 yards and two touchdowns and senior tri-captain S Rae Haynes (Hartford, Conn.) scored the go-ahead score on a 40-yard interception return in the fourth quarter against Amherst, as Trinity turned a 20-12 deficit into a 32-20 victory and won its nation-best 47th straight, regular-season home game. Bunker had a pair of one-yard touchdown runs, while Burgess found sophomore RB Michael Budness (Belchertown, Mass.) on a 26-yard scoring toss. Burgess finished 11-for-22 for 125 yards, including three passes for a team-high 51 yards to senior WR Drew Grombala (Cincinnati, Ohio), and senior K Tim Costello (Solana Beach, Calif.) connected on field goals of 22 and 30 yards. First-year P Kyle Pulek (Cheshire, Conn.) played a major role with six punts for an average of 44.5 yards per attempt including two inside the Amherst 20-yard line. In additon to his game-winning interception and return, Haynes also totaled seven tackles and broke up a pass at his own goal line and was rewarded with both the NESCAC Defensive Player of the Week and the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III Northeast Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts. Junior CB Akeem Labitue (Dorchester, Mass.) had a team-high 11 tackles, and sophomore DE Lyle Baker (Andover, Mass.) notched five tackles, one sack, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery.

Trinity leads the NESCAC in total offense (475.6 ypg, 19th in nation), scoring offense (35.9 ppg), rushing offense (300.9 ypg, 5th in nation) and pass efficiency (153.9 eff.), and tops the league in pass defense (142.1 ypg, 7th in nation), pass efficiency defense (79.6 eff., 4th in nation), scoring defense (12.4 ppg, 8th in nation), and total defense (249.3 ypg, 9th in nation). Bunker is the conference's top rusher with 1,136 yards (162.3 per game, 3rd in nation), 486 yards more than the No. 2 rusher, and ranks second in all-purpose yards with 1,273 (11th in nation) to go with 10 touchdowns, while Crick ranks fourth on the rushing list with 531 yards (75.9 per game) on the ground and sixth in all-purpose yards with 850 (121.4 per game). Burgess leads the NESCAC signal callers with a 161.4 efficiency rating (20th in nation), having completed 75 of 123 attempts for 1,165 yards (4th in NESCAC) with 14 touchdowns and just three picks. Grombala leads the Trinity pass catchers with 17 receptions for 241 yards, while junior WR A.J. Jones (Freetown, Sierra Leone) ranks 10th in the conference with 275 receiving yards on 11 grabs. The Bantam offensive line, led by senior tri-captain G Mike Valenti (Bethel, Conn.), senior tri-captain C Andrew Weiss (New York, N.Y.), senior G Gino Arnold (Ridgewood, N.J.), and sophomore T Joe Magardino (Chappaqua, N.Y.), has helped Trinity ball carriers average 5.6 yards per carry while yielding just nine sacks. Sophomore LB Tom Szymanski (Dracut, Mass.) has a team-high 39 tackles with 4.5 tackles for loss, while Haynes has 35 hits, five pass breakups, and three interceptions (T7th in NESCAC), and junior LB Steve Goniprow (Barrington, R.I.) adds a team-high three sacks (T5th in NESCAC). Pulek is the leading punter in the league with an average of 38.7 per boot.

The Wesleyan University football squad, under the direction of Head Coach Michael Whalen (3rd season), is enjoying its finest season in recent memory having clinched a winning record two weekends ago with a 34-14 win over Bowdoin before falling out of contention for a share of the league title with its 19-7 loss at Williams on Saturday. Sophomore RB Kyle Gibson ranks second in the league behind Bunker with 650 rushing yards, while classmate Jesse Warren is the second-leading passer in the NESCAC with 190.4 yards to go with 10 touchdowns but also has nine interceptions. Junior Kevin Hughes and Jay Fabien have combined for 61 catches over

Sep. 23: All times Eastern
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at Framingham State 50, Massachusetts Maritime 7
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Muhlenberg 56, at Juniata 40
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Salisbury 27, at TCNJ 7
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MIT 38, at Catholic 21
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Merchant Marine 56, at Maine Maritime 31
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at Albright 9, Widener 7
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Christopher Newport 16, at Montclair State 8
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at Westminster (Pa.) 41, Bethany 14
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Middlebury 41, at Bowdoin 14
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Williams 24, at Colby 7
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Amherst 36, at Hamilton 6
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Ursinus 35, at Moravian 17
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Trinity (Conn.) 51, at Bates 0
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Geneva 33, at Thiel 24
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at Plymouth State 37, Mass-Dartmouth 7
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Kean 28, at Southern Virginia 14
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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Union 17, at Curry 14
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Lycoming 44, at King's 41
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at N.C. Wesleyan 35, Maryville (Tenn.) 25
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Huntingdon 31, at Ferrum 28
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Franklin and Marshall 27, at Susquehanna 24
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at Denison 45, Oberlin 17
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at Northwestern (Minn.) 10, Westminster (Mo.) 7
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at Eureka 44, Crown 20
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at Lebanon Valley 24, FDU-Florham 14
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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at Ohio Northern 35, Otterbein 7
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at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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at Rose-Hulman 37, Defiance 14
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at Marietta 49, Muskingum 25
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Franklin 59, at Bluffton 30
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at Hanover 64, Anderson 21
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Mount St. Joseph 31, at Manchester 14
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Worcester State 34, at Westfield State 10
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Coast Guard 13, at Norwich 9
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at Fitchburg State 31, Bridgewater State 29
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Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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at Millsaps 17, Sewanee 13
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at Rhodes 35, Birmingham-Southern 9
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at Hendrix 36, Austin 24
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at Martin Luther 34, Greenville 20
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at Trinity (Texas) 41, Chapman 35
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at Loras 73, Buena Vista 34
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at Wartburg 30, Washington U. 20
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at Gustavus Adolphus 51, Hamline 7
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Augsburg 48, at Carleton 28
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at Luther 21, Dubuque 17
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at Central 52, Nebraska Wesleyan 27
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Simpson 38, at Coe 33
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Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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St. Norbert 66, at Grinnell 13
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at Knox 13, Ripon 6
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at MacMurray 32, Iowa Wesleyan 14
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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Southwestern 37, at Louisiana College 34
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Monmouth 26, at Macalester 0
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at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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at Cornell 55, Beloit 36
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at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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at Hartwick 24, St. John Fisher 21
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at UW-La Crosse 41, Carroll 6
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at St. Scholastica 37, Minnesota-Morris 3
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at George Fox 44, UW-Eau Claire 0
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at Western Connecticut 37, Salve Regina 23
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at UW-Stevens Point 41, Adrian 28
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at Wesleyan 24, Tufts 17
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at Berry 28, Centre 14
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at Illinois Wesleyan 18, North Park 0
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at UW-Platteville 56, Lakeland 22
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Carthage 55, at Augustana 14
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Chicago 28, at Illinois College 7
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at Sul Ross State 35, McMurry 7
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Lake Forest 42, at Lawrence 26
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Arizona Christian 56, at Whittier 38
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Shenandoah at Randolph-Macon
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7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at FDU-Florham
Sep. 23: All times Eastern
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at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
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Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
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at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
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Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
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Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
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at Heidelberg 47, John Carroll 21
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at Mount Union 55, Baldwin Wallace 7
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Wittenberg 48, at Kenyon 11
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at Wabash 25, Hiram 21
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Hardin-Simmons 63, at Howard Payne 3
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North Central (Ill.) 51, at Millikin 21
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Wheaton (Ill.) 40, at Elmhurst 15
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at St. Thomas 20, St. John's 17
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
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at Brockport 28, Utica 14
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at Case Western Reserve 56, Waynesburg 21
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at Illinois Wesleyan 18, North Park 0
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at UW-Platteville 56, Lakeland 22
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at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Texas Lutheran 7
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Sep. 29: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at FDU-Florham