Westwood, MA --- WPI seniors Sean McAllen (Prospect, CT) and Sam Casey (Winchester, MA) earned Athlete of the Year honors from the NEWMAC following voting by the conference's football coaches. McAllen was named the Offensive Athlete of the Year while Casey was selected the Defensive Athlete of the Year to highlight 18 different Engineer players to earn recognition from the NEWMAC.
McAllen is one of WPI's most accomplished offensive players in program history. Just one of two players to rush for over 1,000 yards twice in his career, including 1,069 this season, he enters Saturday's New England Bowl contest just 52 yards away from tying the all-time career rushing total. The running back is also just a touchdown away from 300 career points, which is second all-time at WPI. McAllen was the Liberty League Rookie of the Year in 2016 and this marks his third straight first team All-NEWMAC accolade.
Casey is also a four-year standout for the Crimson and Gray. The strong safety has stuffed the stat sheets this season with 50 tackles, including three for loss, three interceptions, four pass breakups and a pair of forced fumbles. Casey drew regional and national praise when he was tabbed NEWMAC Defensive Player of the Week and named to the D3football.com Team of the Week after his performance in WPI's NEWMAC-opening victory at Springfield. Casey repeats as first team All-NEWMAC after being named second team in 2017.
Other first team selections include senior running back Connor Field (Granby, CT), senior defensive lineman Mike McGoff (Ashland, MA), senior quarterback Julian Nyland (Melrose, MA), senior linebacker Nick Ostrowski (Charlton, MA), senior center Vince Lucca (Granby, VT), senior left tackle Isaac Patry (Saco, ME) and junior defensive lineman Lou Duh (Monroe, CT). Like Casey, Ostrowski picks up his second first-team selection after a second team showing in 2017 while McGoff duplicates his first team honor in 2018 and Lucca and Duh upgrade from second team last fall.
Junior Bryce Wade (Modesto, CA) was named to the second team as both a placekicker and a punter. WPI's additional second team honorees include senior linebacker Zack Ahrens (South Glens Falls, NY), senior right guard Jordan Hartley (Rutland, MA), and senior defensive back Steve Mey (Watertown, MA), who was also the Engineers' representative on the conference's All-Sportsmanship Team. Others on the second team were senior returner Austin Pesce (Monroe, NY), senior left guard Peter Rakauskas (Boxboro, MA), senior wide receiver Nic Rossi (Howell, MA) and junior defensive back Adam Klosner (Ilion, NY). Pesce returns to the all-conference scrolls after a first team selection in 2017 while Rossi earned his second straight second team honor.
Field has been a touchdown machine for the Crimson and Gray. His 20 touchdowns (19 rushing) give him 120 points on the season, a new school record. The senior has amassed 807 yards on the ground in 2019.
McGoff leads WPI with 5.5 sacks this fall. The defensive end has a pair of sacks en route to being named the Robert Pritchard Defensive MVP of Homecoming in a triumph over Maine Maritime.
Nyland is a two-year starter at quarterback for the Engineers. His 2,103 passing yards are second most in a single season and he is fifth all-time in career yardage with 3,914. The senior, who has one more season of eligibility because of an injury in 2017, earned NEWMAC Offensive Athlete of the Week honors after throwing for 332 yards and three touchdowns versus Merchant Marine on October 26th.
Ostrowski is a three-year starter at middle linebacker and has led the Engineers in tackles the last two seasons. The senior currently has 78 tackles, 25 more than the second highest on team.
Duh, the starting nose guard had anchored a power WPI defense line, notching 28 tackles, including 5.5 for loss, and a pair of sacks. He, along with Ostrowski, was a repeat Academic All-District selection last week.
Simply put, the Boynton Hillers offensive line was dominate in 2019. The senior quartet of Lucca, Patry, Hartley and Rakauskas accounted for 40% of the NEWMAC's all-conference offensive line. The unit was a big reason WPI allowed just four sacks in 10 games, averages 467.4 yards per game and set a new single season school scoring record with 438 points.
Wade nabbed four NEWMAC Football Special Teams Athlete of the Week awards during the season. As a placekicker he connected for 54-of-56 PATs and 9-of-13 field attempts and accounted for all of WPI's scoring in the Engineers 6-3 Transit Trophy victory over RPI. As a punter, his 36.3 yard average included 11 dropped inside the 20.
Ahrens accounted for 47 tackles this fall, including two for loss, from his outside linebacker position. The senior posted a career-best 13 stops as the Crimson and Gray limited RPI to just three points in a 6-3 WPI victory.
Mey emerged as a key defensive cog in his first year starting in the defensive backfield. The senior free safety is second on the team with 53 tackles and leads the squad with 10 passes defended (1 interception and 9 pass breakups).
Pesce capped a three-year run of solid punt returning by leading the NEWMAC with a 14.8 yard average in 2019. The senior's season was highlighted by an 80-yard return for a touchdown in WPI's homecoming victory over Maine Maritime.
Rossi leads the Crimson and Gray in all receiving categories with 32 catches for 685 yards and six touchdowns. The senior's two scores last week now gives the receiver 17 career touchdowns.
Klosner has had an outstanding season at cornerback. The junior collected an interception in WPI's season-opening shutout of Worcester State and totaled 28 tackles and three pass breakups during the season.
WPI finished the regular season 9-1 and captured a share of the NEWMAC championship with a 6-1 mark. The Engineers will host 8-2 Western Connecticut in a New England Bowl Series contest Saturday at 1pm.