The Colby College offense suffered a big loss in the season opener at Williams, when Cony High School graduate Luke Duncklee suffered a broken left leg in the third quarter.

The injury was originally diagnosed as a sprained ankle, Duncklee said, but when he woke up to much more swelling on Sunday, he knew it was worse.

“I knew it was broken,” said Duncklee, who was on crutches and watched his teammates practiced Thursday.

Duncklee does a little of everything in the Mules’ offense. At Williams, he threw a 40-yard touchdown pass, had eight catches for 66 yards and had one carry for a loss of a yard. The 105 yards produced by Duncklee was 66 percent of Colby’s offensive output Saturday, a 41-7 loss.

“You design a system and play to the strengths of your best players. Luke certainly is one of them. I think we have to establish a run game,” Colby head coach Jonathan Michaeles said. “That was going to be our plan, anyhow. Guys need to step up and take advantage of the opportunities that are in front of them.”

A sophomore, Duncklee is likely out for the season. He hopes to be cleared to play against Bowdoin in the season finale on Nov. 10, but said his doctors aren’t optimistic.

“I’m just trying to stay positive,” Duncklee said. “I’m telling myself, I have two more years.”

• • •

One of the biggest things Michaeles wants to see from the Mules on Saturday when they host Middlebury is a better mental approach.

“If you looked at the (Williams) box score, you saw 12 penalties. That’s just too many to give yourself a chance to compete against a good team,” Michaeles said. “There’s an upside to it, that’s something you control. It’s not a physical thing. It’s a mental thing. It’s a discipline thing. A lot of guys were playing for the first time. Not to make an excuse, but they were spinning a little bit. It’s good to have a game under our belt.”

Middlebury comes to Waterville with the best passing offense in the New England Small College Athletic Conference. Middlebury quarterback McCallum Foote threw for 285 yards and five touchdowns in the Panthers’ season-opening 42-18 win over Bowdoin and was the NESCAC Offensive Player of the Year last season.

“He’s excellent,” Michaeles said. “(Foote) gets the ball out on time. He makes good decisions. He’s accurate, and he’s got some guys to throw the ball to. They’re the total offensive package. They’ve been doing it well for a while.”

Against Middlebury, the Colby defense has to stress patience, Michaeles said.

“Keep the ball in front of us. Make them dink and dunk and see if they’re willing to be patient with their offensive play calling,” Michaeles said. “The bend but don’t break type of mentality. We really don’t want to bend a whole lot, but we want to keep the ball in front of us.”

• • •

Husson had a week off to savor its win over Anna Maria, its first win since beating Anna Maria on Oct. 9, 2010. The 28-22 win on Sept. 15 snapped Husson’s 16-game losing streak, and now the Eagles hope to start a winning streak with Saturday’s game at Eastern Collegiate Conference rival Becker.

“It’s our first conference game (of the season), so it’s pretty big,” said offensive tackle Cody Ziegenfus, a junior from Oakland.

Like Husson, Becker is 1-2. The Hawks are led by quarterback Robert Baker, who is second in the league in passing, averaging 260.3 yards per game passing. Corinthian Bostic has 20 catches for 230 yards and four touchdowns for the Hawks.

Husson quarterback Kash Keezer is fifth in the league with 118.3 passing yards per game. Farmingdale native Ryan Dorso averages 76.7 yards per game on the ground for the Eagles, good for fifth-best in the ECFC.

Linebacker Stephen Dance averages 11 tackles per game for Husson, while Dellon Douglas leads Husson with 3.5 sacks. Lawrence grad Bryant Wade has two sacks for the Eagles.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

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