Monday, December 6, 2021

O Captain(s), My Captain(s)


written by STEVE ULRICH
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III
>> Good Monday morning. Congrats to Christopher Newport and Connecticut College on their respective soccer championships.

>> Today's Word Count: 974

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1. O Captain(s), My Captain(s)

2021 NCAA National Championship Women's Soccer
photo by Megan May

"O Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done,
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won"

- Walt Whitman                                          

Christopher Newport University won the NCAA Division III women's soccer championship as the Captains downed The College of New Jersey, 2-0, in the national final in Greensboro, N.C.

Sarah Smith scored in the 19th minute to give the Captains the lead with their only shot on goal of the first half. Senior Riley Cook assisted on that tally and added a PK goal of her own on her way to earning Most Outstanding Offensive Player honors. Teammate Jill MacDonald was named the Most Outstanding Defensive Player, leading a unit that blanked two of the most prolific offenses in the country in the semifinal and final.

Haley Eiser made seven saves for her 32nd career clean sheet as the Captains completed an undefeated 22-0-1 campaign.

>> Elite 90 AwardJulia Meehan, Wesleyan, Conn.
>> CNU release
>> Box Score
>> Full replay


2. Hump-Day for the Camels

National Champions

Connecticut College won its first-ever NCAA Division III team championship with a PK triumph against Amherst in the national final in Greensboro, N.C.

The Camels converted all four penalties and GK Peter Silvester conceded only one to the Mammoths to secure the title. Lorenzo Bocchetti converted the championship PK.

Augie Djerdjai got Conn on the board first in the 60', heading home a corner from Rye Jaran. Amherst knotted the score with just 87 seconds remaining off a free kick that Kyle Kelly put in the back of the net.

The sides played two scoreless overtime periods, setting up penalties to determine the national championship for the first time since 2008.

>> Elite 90 AwardTyler Bernard, Washington and Lee
>> Connecticut College release
>> Box Score
>> Full replay

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3.  Top Four Advance to Semis

Derrick Harvey Jr. | photo by Ed Hall, Jr.


The top four teams in the national ranking advanced to the national semifinals after victories on Saturday.

No. 4 Mount Union d. No. 15 Muhlenberg, 35-29

  • The Purple Raiders overcame a 21-9 third-quarter deficit and pulled out an overtime victory on a TD pass from Braxton Plank to Derrick Harvey Jr.
No. 3 UW-Whitewater d. No. 8 Central, 51-21
  • Alex Peete ran for 181 yards and scored three TDs for the Warhawks
No. 2 Mary Hardin-Baylor d. No. 7 Linfield, 49-24
  • Kyle King threw for 345 yards and six TDs for the Cru
No. 1 North Central d. Rensselaer, 55-6
  • Luke Lehnen threw three TD passes while Ethan Greenfield and Terrence Hill each rushed for two more for the defending champions

>> Semifinals: North Central at Mount Union, 12:00 ET; UW-Whitewater at Mary Hardin-Baylor, 3:30 ET.

>> Recaps courtesy of

4. Weekend Recap

Ice Hockey (M)

  • Tough weekend for top-10 teams throughout the country, as #4 Augsburg, #6 Norwich, #7 Aurora, #8 Endicott and #10 Trinity all suffered defeats. The Auggies, Spartans and Gulls split weekend sets with Concordia, Lawrence and Curry, while the Cadets fell to #9 Babson and the Bantams lost to Amherst and Hamilton.
Ice Hockey (W)
  • Top-ranked Middlebury won a pair of one-goal games against Amherst, while No. 3 Elmira posted two shutout victories. 
  • Curry GK Anna Leighton was busy over the weekend, making 129 saves in a pair of losses to Endciott, including 72 in a 3-0 loss on Friday.
Wrestling (M)
  • No. 5 Coe (3-0) had an impressive weekend, downing No. 2 North Central, 29-17, and No. 6 UW-La Crosse, 30-13. 125 Alex Friddle, 174 Tristin Westphal, 184 Ryan Schott and 285 Kaleb Reeves were double winners.
Swimming (M)
  • No. 4 Denison won its own Invitational, downing No. 3 Emory, No. 6 Washington (Mo.) and No. 11 Franklin & Marshall. The Big Red had 88 NCAA "B" cuts by 24 individuals over the weekend.
Indoor Track and Field (M)
  • John Carroll's Alex Phillip ran a 13:58.42 at the Grand Valley State Holiday Open 5K, becoming just the third man in Division III history to crack the 14-minute barrier on any indoor track.
Basketball (M)
  • It only took five overtimes but Brandeis finally subdued Tufts, 108-102. The game was tied at 61 after regulation. 
  • Jake Rhode hit a half-court shot at the buzzer to lift No. 7 Elmhurst past No. 5 Wheaton, 76-75.
Basketball (W)
  • No. 9 East Texas Baptist gave away a fourth-quarter lead before battling back to down No. 10 Hardin-Simmons, 58-54.
  • Top-ranked Hope extended its winning streak to 52 with a 78-51 victory against Aquinas.

5.  Comings and Goings

6. The Teddy Bear Toss

My new favorite holiday tradition is ... the Teddy Bear Toss. Last Saturday, for the 17th time, Utica College combined with a local company for its annual event in conjunction with a home Pioneer men's ice hockey contest.

Fans are encouraged to bring teddy bears large and small to the game. When Utica scores its first goal, fans throw their bears onto the ice where they are collected and distributed to children throughout the Mohawk Valley.


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