Corsairs win conference championship, eligible for NCAA tournament
For the first time in program history, UMass Dartmouth’s football team is the best in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference.
The title comes after the Corsairs beat Plymouth State 46-21 on Nov. 12, finishing with the season with 9-1 record (going 8-0 against conference opponents). This was the first conference championship since 2002, when the team was in the New England Football Conference
With the MASCAC crown, the Corsairs have earned an automatic bid to the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III tournament, which begins Nov. 19.
UMass Dartmouth will take on Ithaca College at noon. The winner of that game will move on to either play Endicott or Springfield.
The Corsairs possess the 15th highest-powered offenses in the nation, averaging 42.1 points per game. Junior QB Dante Aviles-Santos is fifth in the country in passing yards (2,940), eighth in passing yards per game (294.0), eighth in total offense (312.4), and 16th in passing touchdowns (26). Sophomore WR Angel Sanchez leads the nation in receiving yards per game (138.0) and is ninth in receiving yards (1,104) despite only playing eight games. Senior RB Luis Gonzalez is 18th in the country with 14 rushing touchdowns.
UMass Dartmouth also boasts the best defense in the conference, allowing only 18.8 points per game, 246.7 yards per game, and 11 team interceptions.
Senior Josh Lacerte and sophomore Sam Alicea lead the team with seven sacks each, while 5th-year senior Javien Delgado leads the way with 52 tackles on the year.