Dereck Pacheco has been named NEWMAC All-Conference in the sport of football.
Led by NEWMAC Special Teams Athlete of the Year junior Spencer Herrington, nine members of the WPI football team were named NEWMAC All-Conference first teamers and five were placed on the second team for their efforts so far this fall.
Herrington collected the inaugural NEWMAC major award and was joined by sophomore running back Sean McAllen, senior wide receiver Corey Coogan, senior offensive lineman Brendan Harty, sophomore punt returner Austin Pesce, senior defensive lineman Dereck Pacheco, junior defensive lineman Luca Cerasani, junior linebacker Sam Malafronte and senior defensive back Lou Garcia on the first team. Second team representatives featured senior quarterback Blake Rice, junior wide receiver Erik Fyrer, junior offensive lineman Nick Day, sophomore linebacker Nick Ostrowski and sophomore defensive back Sam Casey.
Herrington leads all kickers with nearly 70 points, which also ranks fifth among all players, and has been successful on all 42 extra point attempts. He is currently tied for first with nine field goals while ranking second in field goal attempts (11), long field goal (41 yards) and PATs made, as well as third in PAT attempts. As a punter, Herrington is tied for third with 15 placed inside the 20. The four-time NEWMAC Special Teams Athlete of the Week enjoyed a trio of 6-for-6 extra point performances and two games that featured a pair of field goals.
McAllen, the Liberty League Rookie of the Year and All-Conference second team member in 2016, owns the Engineers single season rushing record with 1,322 points, currently the second-best total in the NEWMAC. He is also second in yards per game (132.2), rushing touchdowns (14) and third in yards per rush (6.1). McAllen eclipsed 100 yards seven times with a career-high 246 in the opener versus Anna Maria to go with 237 yards and two scores as a receiver.
Coogan, a top 10 receiver in the NEWMAC, leads the Engineers with 319 yards on 26 catches and four touchdowns. He accounted for a career-high six receptions along with a score versus RPI and added another TD versus Becker. Coogan later went back-to-back with one at Catholic and versus Merchant Marine.
Harty, a four-year starter, is a key cog on the O-line that helped the team score the most points (337) in a single-season in the 128 years of WPI Football. The sum was also second in the NEWMAC. He also helped McAllen achieve the single-season record for rushing yards in a season.
Pesce leads the NEWMAC with 25 punt returns, 298 yards and average (11.9) among all student-athletes with double digit punts, as well as a long of 45. He had a career day at Catholic with 104 yards on four attempts, including s 45-yarder, for an average of 26.0 per return.
Pacheco has been upgraded each of the past three years as he began as a Liberty League honorable mention in 2015 and a second teamer in 2016. He is tied for third in the NEWMAC with five sacks, second with 35 sack yards, and first with a pair of fumble recoveries during the regular season. Pacheco has also amassed 44 tackles featuring 16.5 for-loss, as well as a forced fumble and a blocked field goal.
Cerasani, a Liberty League honorable mention a year ago, boasts six sacks for 35 yards and an interception returned for a TD. All three are tied for second among NEWMAC student-athletes. His scoop and score helped the Engineers blank Anna Maria and got to the QB three times at Catholic. He also forced a pair of fumbles during the teams trip to D.C.
Malafronte, a 2016 Liberty League honorable mention, has registered seven tackles for-loss including two sacks as part of a 64 tackle season thus far. The junior captain also touts an interception and a fumble recovery.
Garcia saved his best for the NEWMAC portion of the schedule with two of his league-leading six interceptions returned for touchdowns, as well as nine pass breakups. Earlier in the campaign, Garcia made five solo stops to go along with a forced fumble versus RPI.
Rice paces the league with 16 touchdown passes and is second with 1,815 yards on 149 completions and a 116.5 passer rating. He has also chipped in with 156 rushing yards and a score on 42 attempts. Rice threw for 272 yards on 29-of-48 passing and two TDs against RPI and was more efficient with 10.1 yards per pass with four scores against Merchant Marine.
Fyrer has scored three touchdowns in his debut on offense and as a member of the Engineers. His first was against RPI and then scored in back-to-back games at Catholic and versus Merchant Marine. His 83-yard TD against the Mariners also served as his longest reception of the season.
Day, a mainstay on the O-line, also helped the team score the most points (337) in a single-season in the 128 years of WPI Football, which is also second in the NEWMAC. He also helped fuel McAllen's single-season record for rushing yards in a campaign.
Ostrowski paces the Crimson and Gray with 65 tackles, including 38 solo, five for-loss and a pair of sacks. He made double digit stops at Springfield (10), at MIT (11) and at Norwich (11). While in Cambridge, the sophomore returned an interception 55 yards. To date, Ostrowski claims a pair of forced fumbles and two recoveries.
Casey is third in the NEWMAC with 47 solo tackles. Along with 14 assisted stops, Casey totals 61 on the year. Four were for-loss as he has also amassed seven pass breakups, forced a fumble, recovered a fumble, nabbed an interception and blocked a kick.