Football Visits Westfield State in First MASCAC Game Ever

Football Visits Westfield State in First MASCAC Game Ever

NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's football team will play their first game ever in the Massachusetts Collegiate Athletic Conference when they travel to Westfield State for their 2013 conference opener. Kickoff at Alumni Field is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.

The Corsairs come into Saturday's game with an 0-1 record, having lost their opener to Mount Ida two weeks ago by a single point. The Owls are 1-1, having lost their opener at Nichols by one point in overtime, and then coming back to defeat Western New England in their home opener last Friday night.

"We got an awful lot accomplished," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Mark Robichaud about his team's bye week last week. "We were able to fix some of our glaring deficiencies from the Mount Ida game, and we're excited to start playing in the MASCAC."

UMass Dartmouth and Westfield State have met 11 times, but last played in 1997, before the New England Football Conference, the former home of both teams, split into two divisions.
"We haven't played Westfield since I've been here," said Robichaud. "Other than (Defensive Coordinator) Coach (Steve) Faniel playing and coaching there, we don't know that much about them."
The Owls grabbed people's attention when they defeated Western New England. "I think everyone who follows Division III football was surprised," said Robichaud. "They dominated the game in all three aspects. They are a good ootball team that is well-coached."  
Westfield State is expected to mount a strong ground attack. "They like to run the ball; they have a fast, tough running back and they run the ball very well," said Robichaud. "We feel like we have to stop the run to be successful. They are well-balanced and good on defense, so we will have to be on top of our game offensively."
Robichaud is looking for improvement from his team. "Our special teams need to be greatly improved, that was our downfall against Mount Ida," said Robichaud. "We should see a different team this week than we saw two weeks ago. I don't think our offense reached anywhere near its potential in week one, we're hoping for more success. Our defense played well two weeks ago, but there is room for improvement there. We also need to be sold in our kicking game in order to be successful."
The Corsairs will return to action when they host Plymouth State a week from Saturday in their annual homecoming game.