NEFC All-Conference Released; Gulls Garner Three Major Awards, 15 All-Conference
BEVERLY, Mass. – The New England Football Conference's (NEFC) top offense, second-ranked defense, and championship winning squad was well represented on the All-Conference Teams and Awards release as Endicott received 16 awards including Offensive Player of the Year, Defensive Rookie of the Year, and Coach of the Year.
The NEFC All-Conference and Major Awards are nominated and voted upon by the league's head coaches. The honorees were announced today by NEFC Publicity Director, Roger Crosley.
|Drew Frenette, QB|
Endicott junior quarterback Drew Frenette (New Bedford, Mass.) was named Offensive Player of the Year in the NEFC, standing out as the top signal caller in the conference with 24 touchdowns to just three interceptions with an average of 276.3 passing yards per game. Frenette threw just one pick in conference play, a stretch of seven games and seven wins for the Gulls that helped them win the 2013 NEFC Championship. In the de facto conference championship game, Frenette shined in the second half with three touchdown passes to solidify Endicott's spot in the NCAA Division III Tournament.
Frenette is Endicott's second NEFC Offensive Player of the Year winner in program history, joining former quarter Phil Konopka '12 who won the award in the 2011 season. Frenette was also named the NEFC's First Team Quarterback.
|Craig Anderson, DE|
Freshman defensive end Craig Anderson (Franklin, Mass.) is Endicott's second Defensive Rookie of the Year, along with all-time tackles and sacks leader Kevin Eagan '12, as Anderson recorded 59 tackles, 7.5 tackles for a loss, and 3.5 sacks on the season. Twenty-nine of his tackles were solo takedowns. His standout performance of the season came in week 10 against Western New England as Anderson made 12 tackles with 1.5 sacks in a 38-21 win over the Golden Bears.
Head coach JB Wells won his first NEFC Coach of the Year award in 11 seasons at the helm of Endicott football after leading the Gulls to an 8-2 (7-0 NEFC) record and second NEFC Championship in four years. With a wealth of dedicated coaches and talented players, Endicott led the league in scoring, ranked second in defense, and finished atop the conference in several special teams categories. Wells will take his team into the NCAA DIII Tournament where they face NJAC rival Rowan on Saturday, November 23rd at 12:00 pm in Glassboro, New Jersey.
|JB Wells, HC|
The NEFC placed six Gulls on their First Team Offense along with Frenette including skill players in senior tight end Greg Dellorco(Franklin, Mass.), sophomore wide receiver Alec Matys (Woburn, Mass.), and sophomore running back Spencer Walsh (Malden, Mass.) as well as senior right tackle Alec Gatzogiannis (Wells, Maine), junior left guard Anthony Fulmine (Carver, Mass.) and senior placekicker Dylan Rushe (Palos Verdes, Calif.). Matys led the NEFC in touchdowns (12) while averaging 77.2 yards per game and 14.8 yards per catch. Walsh finished the regular season ranked third in the league in scoring overall with 90 points on 15 touchdowns (14 rush, one receive) as he pulled off a stretch of six straight games with at least two touchdowns from week four to week 10. Dellorco provided a safety valve for Frenette in the middle of the field, catching 27 balls for 325 yards and two touchdowns on the year. Gatzogiannis, now a two-time NEFC First Team Tackle, and Fulmine anchored a Gulls offensive line that allowed just 12 sacks all season long and facilitated the league's best offense.
Rushe set career-high with an 82.4% success rate on field goal attempts, making 14-of-17 tries and 43-of-46 PATs. He ranked second on the team in overall scoring with 85 points and tops in the NEFC in scoring for a kicker. Rushe was especially effective from long distance this season, converting 5-of-6 field goal attempts from over 40 yards including a season-high 54-yarder in a 33-7 win over Coast Guard. Rushe has now been named NEFC First Team Kicker all four years of his collegiate career.
Rushe also appeared on the NEFC's list of First Team Defense as the best punter in the league for the second straight season. He averaged 40.8 yards per attempt with 21 of his 43 punts landing inside the opposition's 20-yard line. Over the final two weeks of the regular season, Rushe placed 13 punts inside the 20-yard line including seven againstSalve Regina in the NEFC Championship to set a school record.
Joining Rushe on the NEFC First Team Defense were senior defensive back Jason Silva (Palatine, Ill.), junior defensive back Jake Cox (Wrentham, Mass.), senior linebackerAndrew Holfinger (Sterling, Mass.), and senior nose guard Marcell Cooper (Dorchester, Mass.). Silva tied for the NEFC lead in interceptions (4) as two of his picks came in a critical game against Salve Regina on the last week of the regular season. Cox defended nine passes in total, three interceptions and six break ups, to rank fourth in the NEFC in that category. Holfinger finished third in the conference in tackles for a loss (14.5) and was a member of a stellar linebacking core with 58 tackles. Cooper had 82 tackles on the year, 35 of which were solo, with 5.0 tackles for a loss, two sacks, four quarterback hurries, and two forced fumbles.
Gulls senior corner back Davas Wright (Fall River, Mass.) and senior linebacker Nick Kozlowski (Beverly, Mass.) were also recognized by the NEFC as Second Team defenders. Wright defended six passes with four break ups and 33 tackles while Kozlowski led Endicott with 89 tackles in 2013. Kozlowski totaled 5.5 tackles behind the line of scrimmage, recorded a pick, and forced two fumbles.
Endicott's final honoree was junior left tackle Mike Marini (Trumbull, Conn.) who earned his first collegiate postseason award as a Second Team tackle. Marini, along with Fulmine, Gatzogiannis, sophomore center Ryan Mrozek (Shelton, Conn.) and sophomore right guard Michael Minerva (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.) as well as an impressive collection of backups all contributed towards Endicott offensive success this fall.