Nov 15, 2018
Westfield, Mass. — Jack Lavanchy of Bridgewater State and Zach Howard of Westfield State are the 2018 MASCAC Football Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year and headline the 2018 MASCAC All-Conference teams as voted on by the coaches from around the league.
Lavanchy, a senior wide receiver from Walpole, Mass., finished his college career with the Bears on top of the MASCAC in several categories, including receiving touchdowns (11), total yards (1105), yards per game (110.5) and receptions (88) while averaging the eighth-most yards per catch (12.6). His 88 receptions broke the school-record for total number in a season while he is the only receiver in school history to have two 1,000-yard receiving seasons (1,193 in 2017 and 1,105 in 2018).
Earning the 2018 MASCAC Defensive Player of the Year honors is Zach Howard from Westfield State. The senior linebacker from Spencer, Mass., finished the season with 78 tackles, including 43 solo, 3.5 sacks, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries. He helped the Owls defense hold opponents to 110.1 yards per game on the ground and 22.7 points per game. In the win over Worcester State, he had eight tackles, including 1.5 for a loss and ran an interception back 51 yards for a touchdown.
Antonio Mitjans of UMass Dartmouth claims the 2018 MASCAC Offensive Lineman of the Year award. The senior center from Ashland, Mass., helped lead a Corsairs offensive line that had 1,623 rushing yards, averaged 162.3 rushing yards per game, 18 rushing touchdowns and averaged 27.7 points per game.
In his first season with the Bears, quarterback Brad Thiltgen is the 2018 MASCAC Offensive Rookie of the Year. The freshman from Cumming, Ga. played in nine games for Bridgewater State and collected 574 yards with a 60.8 completion percentage and five touchdowns this season. In the win over Westfield State, he had 170 yards on 11-of-15 passing (73.3%) and two touchdowns.
Samuel Kenny of Fitchburg State is the 2018 MASCAC Defensive Rookie of the Year award winner. The freshman defensive lineman from S. Yarmouth, Mass. collected 44 total tackles, including 27 solo, 7.5 sacks for 35 yards and recovered one fumble on the year. His top game of the season came against Plymouth State where he finished with 11 total tackles, three sacks and 3.5 tackles of a loss.
After leading his team to the MASCAC Regular Season Title and the conference’s automatic qualifier into the NCAA DIII Tournament, Tom Kelley of Framingham State has been named the 2018 Champion’s Choice Coach of the Year by his peers.