Zecchin, Pincince headline football’s NE-10 honors


Photo courtesy of Tyler Wells

The New Haven football team celebrates after beating Bentley University, Nov. 8, West Haven.

The Northeast-10 (NE-10) Conference released their awards for the 2021 football season on Wednesday, with New Haven leading all NE-10 teams at 12 total selections to the All-Conference teams, including six on the First Team.

Offensive lineman Mike Zecchin was named as the NE-10’s Offensive Lineman of the Year after leading the group to find their stride as the season went on. He is the first Chargers lineman to win the award since Zach Voytek in 2016.

Head coach Chris Pincince was also named the conference’s Coach of the Year, becoming the university’s first to win since Peter Rossomando in 2012. He led the Chargers to a 9-1 record, going undefeated (8-0) in the NE-10. New Haven’s only loss came in the second week of the season against then-No. 22 Bowie State University. The team has come a long way under Pincince’s guidance and remained undefeated for the rest of the season.

New Haven head coach Chris Pincince hugs running back Zach Mauro after beating Bentley University, Nov. 8, West Haven. (Photo courtesy of Tyler Wells)

Across the conference, Assumption College’s running back Dante Exum-Strong was named as the Most Valuable Player. Franklin Pierce University’s RB E.J. Burgess earned Offensive Player of the Year while Saint Anselm College’s QB Drew Willoughby won Offensive Rookie of the Year. A pair of Bentley University players took home the defensive awards, with linebacker Cole McCubrey winning Defensive Player of the Year and Cedie Dashiell II earned Defensive Rookie of the Year.

The Chargers return to Ralph F. DellaCamera Stadium on Saturday as they host Bentley University in the first round of the NCAA playoffs. It is the second time in three weeks that the two teams have played, with New Haven taking down the Falcons 31-14 for the NE-10 Championship. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m., with more information available at NewHavenChargers.com.

New Haven Honorees:

First Team

WR – Dev Holmes
OL – Mike Zecchin
PK – Briant DeFelice
WR – Dev Holmes
DL – Khalim Cisse
LB – Khyon Fitzpatrick
DB – Shawn Tafe

Second Team

QB – Connor Degenhardt

New Haven QB Connor Degenhardt rushes against Bentley University, Nov. 8, West Haven (Photo courtesy of Tyler Wells)

TE – Kevin Foelsch
OL – William Ayers
DL – Michael Montecalvo
LB – Ryan Hodgins
DB – Ryan Dolce

All-Rookie Team

LB – David Abolarinwa
OL – Neil Brown