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Trinity Football Welcomes Wesleyan For Annual Season Finale Saturday

Trinity Football Welcomes Wesleyan For Annual Season Finale Saturday

Hartford, Conn. - The Trinity College football team, which defeated Amherst on the road for the first time since 2007, 21-7, last weekend, will close the 2019 season at home against the Wesleyan University Cardinals on Saturday. November 9 at noon in one of the most storied rivalries in all of college football.  Trinity, coached by Jeff Devanney (14th Season, 96-14), is currently 5-3 and seeking its fifth consecutive victory over the Cardinals and its 10th in a row over them at home.  In 2018, Trinity capped off its third New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) crown in a row with a 9-0 win against the Cardinals in Middletown.  Trinity holds a 64-53-1 record in the 134-year history between the teams.  Wesleyan, 7-1 after winning at Amherst (31-28) and against Williams (27-21) the last two weekends, still has a chance to share the NESCAC title for the the second time in its history with a win today and a Middlebury loss at Tufts.

Game Notes

Trinity sophomore RB Tijani Harris (Hagerstown, Md.) rushed for 105 yards and two touchdowns and the Bantams forced three first-half turnovers against Amherst. An interception by senior DB Matt Patry (Medfield, Mass.) led to the second Harris touchdown of the first half, and sophomore QB Seamus Lambert (North Andover, Mass.) tossed a 15-yard scoring pass to Schofer in the fourth quarter. Senior tri-captain LB Dan Negron (Hartsdale, N.Y.) and sophomore LB Robert Levine (Catonsville, Md.) led all players with 10 tackles each, while Negron also had three tackles for loss and Levine added a sack. Sophomore CB Jalen Weathers (Chicago, Ill.) had nine tackles and a pass breakup, while Patry had seven stops, two pass breakups, and his interception, and junior DL Jimmy Christiano (Middlebury, Conn.) made four tackles, forced a fumble, and recovered it. Senior Ian McDonald (Avon, Conn.) had a nice day punting with a 40.8 average on four attempts. Negron was rewarded with the NESCAC Defensive Player of the Week.

Trinity tops the NESCAC in six different statistical categories, including scoring offense (32.1 ppg), pass efficiency (178.1 QB rating), total defense (261.9 ypg, 17th in nation), rushing defense (102.2 ypg), pass defense (159.6), and pass defense efficiency (104.9). Lambert leads the league in passing (238 ypg), pass efficiency (182.2 QB rating, 6th in nation), and total offense (273.2 ypg), while Harris is sixth in rushing yards with 559 yards despite playing in just five games. Junior Jonathan Girard (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) , Schofer, and sophomore DeVante Reid (London, England) are all among the top ten in receiving yards with 1,714 yards combined, while Schofer and Girard are seventh and tied for eighth, respectively, with 34 and 32 catches. Reid is sixth in the NESCAC in all-purpose yards with 832, and averages over 19 yards per punt return. On defense, Patry is tied for fourth in the NESCAC with three interceptions to go with 28 tackles, and a team-high eight pass breakups, and sophomore LB Brian Casagrande (Madison, Conn.) is eighth in the league with 61 tackles. Christiano has 28 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, and three sacks, and Negron adds 44 tackles and 7.5 tackles for loss.

Wesleyan, coached by Dan DiCenzo (5th Season), have won back-to-back overtime games to remain in contention for a share of its first NESCAC title since 2013. Wesleyan has a stingy pass defense that has picked off 14 of its opponents passes, while its offense averages over 28 ppg. Ashton Scott is a productive quarterback with over 1,600 passing yards and 17 touchdown tosses, while Matt Simco is a top receiver with 37 catches for 628 yards. Danny Banks and Ben Thaw have seven picks between them, while Chase Pratt has a team-high 62 tackles, and Nick Livingston adds a team-best five sacks. Wesleyan, ranked No. 5 in the New England Division III Poll, has lost to Trinity twice in the last seven years with the league title on the line, including a 40-10 thumping in 2013 that denied the Cardinals a perfect season.