Tigers to regroup after disappointing ’16

Published 1:27 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The Hampden-Sydney College football team finished 3-7 overall and 3-4 in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) in 2016, and Tigers Head Coach Marty Favret did not mince words in describing his feeling about the season overall.

“It was a big disappointment,” he said. “No excuses. Injuries are a part of football, and we obviously had some, but that’s the worst season we’ve had in 17 years, so can’t really put a happy smile on this one. Our kids competed and tried and rebounded from an 0-4 start to get back close to .500, but I wasn’t happy the way we finished against Randolph-Macon (College). We need to get better.”

Injury impacted the season even before games began as star senior defensive lineman Benjamin Carson was lost for the year in August. Then, starting senior quarterback Edgar Moore went down for the year in the first half of the season opener against Averett University.

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“So, two captains, two really good players get hurt early, and we never really recovered,” Favret said.

He said his team’s defense played poorly throughout the year, giving up 37.8 points per game.

“You can’t win football games like that,” he said. “So, we played some young guys, and it showed.”

Favret said a key problem on the other side of the ball was too many turnovers.

Despite the disappointing nature of the year, there were highlights for the Tigers.

“Owen Costello, our receiver, had a great season,” Favret said.

Costello, a senior, led the ODAC in average receiving yards per game with 86.6, and he led Hampden-Sydney with 62 receptions.

“And our sophomore quarterback Alec Cobb did some really good things,” Favret said. “The good news is you get some young kids that get some experience, and hopefully it’ll pay off next year and the year beyond. ”

He also highlighted the play of sophomore linebacker Bender Vaught, freshman linebacker Griffin Davis, senior punter Jordan Chalkley, junior wide receiver Cam Johnson, junior running back Mike DeMasi, freshman wide receiver Matt DeMasi and freshman wide receiver Major Morgan.

Favret said he thought the Tigers’ worst game this season was a 52-7 loss to host Washington and Lee University.

“We played with no energy, and it’s the worst loss we’ve ever had here,” he said.

In contrast, he said the high point of the year was the 21-15 victory over visiting Guilford College, which had been nationally ranked and undefeated.

“That was the hurricane weekend when we won in the last minute,” Favret said. “That was a game I think the kids will look back on with fond memories because it was really a big upset and a great win.”

Meeting with freshmen and recruiting new players is the priority now.

“Our goal right now is to get some better players in here and get back to where we’re used to being, which is at the top of our league,” Favret said.