With the first half of the season complete, the Colby College football team is 0-4, and head coach Jonathan Michaeles said the biggest reason for the lack of success is simple.

“It’s playing together as a team consistently,” Michaeles said following Thursday’s practice. “It’s pretty apparent we need to play complimentary football over the course of a game.”

The Mules rank last in the New England Small College Athletic Conference in scoring (12.8 ppg) and next to last in the league in points allowed (34.2 ppg). Both the offense and defense have played well at times, but need to play more consistently, Michaeles said.

“We came out in the opener and didn’t play real well as a team. The second game, we had a great half as a team. The offense did some good things Week 3, the defense did some real good things in Week 4,” Michaeles said.

A bright spot has been Colby’s rushing defense. Despite games against Amherst and Wesleyan, two of the top four running teams in the conference, the Mules are fourth in the league in rushing defense, allowing 109.5 yards per game on the ground.

Colby also is plus-1 in turnover margin, and continuing to win the turnover battle will be a key in the second half of the season.

The schedule lightens up for Colby in the second half. The first four games were against Williams, Middlebury, Wesleyan and Amherst, teams that are a combined 12-4. Beginning with Saturday’s game against Hamilton (1-3), the Mules don’t face a team that currently has a winning record the rest of the season.

Michaeles said getting some players back from injuries this week helps, in that it helps the team rebuild its depth.

“It’s no one guy, but it’s just the depth from within that allows us to practice and not beat up the same guys again and again,” Michaeles said.

* * *

There’s been no sophomore slump for Colby linebacker Henry Nelson. As a freshman last season, Nelson led the Mules with 59 tackles.

This season, Nelson lead Colby with 37 tackles and two fumble recoveries. Twenty-seven on Nelson’s stops are solo tackles. He ranks sixth in the conference with nine tackles per game.

“He’s just been so consistent. From Week 1 in the preaseason, he’s been the one thing,” Michaeles said. “We know we have this guy in the middle of our defense and he’s playing very good football.”

* * *

It’s a tough week for both Bates and Bowdoin, who each must take on an undefeated NESCAC power.

Bowdoin (1-3) hosts Trinity (4-0) at 1 p.m. Saturday. The Bantams lead the NESCAC in scoring (36.8 ppg) and received one vote in this week’s d3football.com top 25 poll.

Bates (2-2) plays at Middlebury (4-0). Bates leads the NESCAC in turnover margin at plus-11. Middlebury is second at plus-4.

* * *

Maine Maritime Academy hosts Massachusetts Maritime on Saturday in the 40th annual Admiral’s Cup Game. Massachusetts Maritime won the game last season 34-6 to claim the Cup for the first time in eight years.

Massachusetts Maritime (3-3) holds a 22-17 lead in the series. Maine Maritime (0-6) has a tough task defensively. The Buccaneers lead the New England Football Conference in total offense, and are third in all of Division III with 537.2 yards per game.

Lawrence High graduate Brock Lawrence leads the Maine Maritime defense with 32 tackles.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

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