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another year begining way to late for Nescac but I digresss.
I didnt get to any games this wknd but will catch a few next wknd including a HUGE Mid at Amh Sunday game.  From what i have read seems like the most exciting game was the Wes 3-2ot win over Bowdoin. I heard Wes field was unplayable so they had to play on a real short field on campus. Bowdoin looks like the strongest team on paper this year except for a glaring weakness in goal. I noticed Eddie Jones didnt play, is he injured?  Big loss in net for Bowdoin, but other than that they return almost everyone plus an addition b/c Hunter Clark was out all year last year. They will be tough. Good win for Wes.  Williams seemingly had an easy road win at lowly Bates. I hear they have a very good freshman class.  Trinty and new(old) memeber Hamilton played to a 1-1 draw, I'm willing to guess hamilton will not match last years 9-3-3 record having to play 10 Nescac games now.  Conn with a good road win over Colby 2-0, could be a surprise team even with the loss of Prophet.  Who will score for them aganist tougher competition? Finally Tufts gets a great opening draw with Midd and with new freshman Santos plus all the returning guys this new coach for Tufts will have them competing at their best in maybe 5-7 years. 

Today the Nescac schedule takes shape.  Because of Hamilton's inclusion to the league you will start to see mid-week league games and tons of sat/sun back to backs. Basically in 50 days teams will play 14 games, on agvg of a little more than a game every 3 days if u include Nescac playoffs. Should be interesting. So Hamilton will travel to Williams and after a 2 1/2 hr ride will face off aganist one of the toughest Nescac Opponents.  I am predicting a 4-0 Williams win..Good bounce back wins for Bowdoin and Midd. A bit of a disappointing draw for Wes aganist an improved Springfield and a disappointing loss for Trinity aganist Woc.State. Why as a coach you would schedule a mid week night road game on turf aganist a physical hungrary team like Worc.STate is beyond me. I mean they should have gotten a result but you have to make your schedule work for you to

9/17 Predictions: Havent seen many teams yet but will give it a try and after the weekend will have seen more teams.
Williams v Trinity 2-0
Well my prediction almost ran true it was Williams 3-0 not 4-0, but I didn’t realize they would have to play on the turf yesterday and possibly Saturday.  That takes some getting used to. I believe the 3 weakest teams in NESCAC are prob Bates, Hamilton and Trinity and maybe Colby. Since Williams opens with the first 3 they should be 3-0 after the wknd. However, Trinity does have weapons including Mayernick, Buckley and a cpl promising frosh. Their D-line is always decent maybe a tad bit slow but decent but I have always said there real weak link is in goal and maybe in not having a target striker to play with Mayernick. 
Midd v Colby  1-0
Havent seen either team yet but this seems like a usual score that holds true.  Colby long trip, early game time and prob not much scoring punch.
Bowdoin v WNEC 2-1
I love this game on the schedule. WNEC coming off a complete trashing of Keene St.  As always they will be extremely fit and running and subbing and running.  It will be curious to see the end result because if Bowdoin takes WNEC lightly they will have a rude awakening. However, I think Bowdoin has more talent and athleticism and will outlast the golden bears.
Amherst v Bates 2-0
This matchup has been heavily favored to Amherst since 2005. Bates had there share of great games against them, one win I remember at Middlesex School maybe 6-7 years ago. Since then all Amherst and really no contest. Last year I was all over Bates for laying down against Amherst in a mid-week home game against them losing 5-0. I was at that game and couldn’t believe the lack of effort and purpose from Bates. They do seem to be a bit stronger this year and always solid defensively and I like their Midfielder Murphy, he can strike a good ball. Amherst coming off a disappointing OT win against Bridgewater St and are just more talented than Bates in every area.

Hamilton v Conn 0-1
Tough week for Hamilton. Lots of travel and not a great team. Keeper is weakness, there backs are ok middies ok and strikers are dreadful. They are going to have to get some secondary scoring from somewhere this season. I like CONN in this game and like them as an improved side this year. Well coached and the coach is starting to get his recruits in there and build a team that he desires. 
Tufts v Wes  2-2
Wild game of weekend. Tufts is much improved and can be dangerous offensively more than in past years. Wes is a solid team, lots of returning starters and Hazelett always seems to come up with big goals and of course MY #1 keeper in Nescac Purdy.  Always liked him since he was a frosh and took them to NCAA sweet 16.

Prediction Game

Good that after this weekend well get to have seen every team play at least one NESCAC game.  I like adding Hamilton to the league, although its too bad it means we dont get to see every team in action each weekend.

Midd v Colby (1-0)

Still hard to get a real sense of the teams so early, but in a game between a team that traditionally struggles and one that usually is strong (especially in a game at Midd), i think Midd will come away.  The fact that they might be looking ahead to Amherst the following day will make this one close.

Amherst v Bates (3-0)
There doesnt seem to be too much to say one this one, Amherst usually handles Bates easily, even when they don't play well.

Trinity v Williams (1-1)
I'm not sure what to make of Williams yet.  I dont remember User form years past, but he seems to have come out of the gates firing.  There two wins so far have both been big but against weaker competition so I'm not confident they really represent how good Williams will be this year.  Trinity can be tough at home.  Ill say they play well enough to earn a draw.

Hamilton v Conn (2-1)
I think Hamilton will get its first NESCAC win in its first home conference game.  I like Conn's new coach, but where will the goals come from without Prophet?  In this game I think someone will put one in, but it wont be enough.

Tufts v Wesleyan (2-0)
I think Tufts can really surprise this year (maybe even host a NESCAC playoff game?)  Wesleyan isn't going to be bad either, as beating Bowdoin showed (is Jones hurt?) but I like Tufts, who like Conn seems to finally have a coach who'll make some noise in the league.

Trinity v Bates (2-0)
I have no idea, just not sure Bates has a road win in them, even against a team that probably is middle of the pack at best.

Amherst v Midd (2-1 in OT)
This is certainly the marquee game this weekend matching two of the top three NESCAC teams from recent years (not ready to put Bowdoin up there with these two and Williams yet).  I really like Amherst a lot this year, they didn't lose too much from and were really lucky to bring Tsatsimpe back for another year (one of the most underratedly talented players in the league).   They also have Jae Heo back who was a stud as freshman when Amherst won the league and went to the final four.  Him and Noon up top could be quite dynamic.  I noticed Mooney hasn't played at all, yet they are 2-0 (seems like they outplayed Bridgewater in the previous game but struggled to get one past their keeper).  Midd's tie at Tufts I dont believe, as I have let on, is as bad of a result as years past, and they handled Norwich easily.  Is Lyvers the boy who once played for Colby? I remember him being one of their better players.  Macnee, Redmond and Pitney are dangerous.  Should be a good one.

Certainly some interesting scores.  Colby (v Midd) and Conn (v Hamilton) both getting road wins surprised me a little.  From the first game I think it might reflect more that  Midd might be in for some trouble this year rather then Colby about to shake things up.  We'll have to see how they respond on the road today against Amherst.  Conn might be for real this year.  I know their two conference wins are against Hamilton and Colby, but if you want be a top team you've got to take care of lesser teams even away from home.  Conn still hasn't let up a goal.  The mid-week game vs Wesleyan will be a good barometer of where each really is at.

From what I read it seems Wesleyan and Tufts weren't playing the prettiest game, but a good win for Wesleyan nonetheless against a team I expected to make at least a little noise.  Not surprised Williams and Trinity drew, tough place to play.  Williams lost a lot from last year.  They never drop off too much, but could be in for some ups and downs this year.

Truthfully the score that surprised me most was Bates getting two goals on Amherst.  Don't think of Bates as particularly potent, although one did come on a PK.  Two of Amherst's four captain didn't play at all, not sure if they're hurt.

11 teams means more games, so right back at it today. I like that.


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