The Colby College football team suffered a tough blow in last week’s 27-7 loss to Middlebury. Senior captain Zach Padula broke his collarbone and will miss the rest of the season.

A safety and punt/kick returner, Padula’s role on the Mules cannot be filled by one player, head coach Jonathan Michaeles said.

“It’s everybody else, just doing a little bit more. You don’t replace a player like that. You don’t just plug somebody in and think it’s going to be the same level,” Michaeles said.

Padula had 12 tackles for Colby, and averaged 18 yards per kick return. Padula was hurt returning a punt.

“It’s the responsibility of everybody, not just on the defense,” Michaeles said of replacing Padula. “If that means our defense is half a step off, our offense has to be half a step better.”

Colby (0-2) hosts Wesleyan (2-0) on Saturday. The Cardinals are one of the most offensively balanced teams in the New England Small College Athletic Conference. In last week’s 43-21 win over Hamilton, Wesleyan threw for 157 yards and ran for 173.

“They want to run the ball, and they’ll get their big plays off the play action pass. They’re committed to griding it out and trying to wear you down,” Michaeles said.

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Skowhegan native Ethan Johnson is getting his shot in Colby’s secondary. A junior, Johnson started both games at safety, and is second on the team with 16 tackles.

“(Johnson) started the first two games and he’s doing a pretty good job for us. He hasn’t played a lot. He’s only played special teams, but he’s learning every week and getting better,” Michaeles said.

Cony graduate Luke Duncklee has eight catches for 53 yards for the Mules.

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After two bye weeks in September broke up the schedule, Husson (1-1) begins Eastern Collegiate Football Conference play on Saturday when it hosts Norwich.

The preseason conference favorite, Norwich is 2-1 and coming off back-to-back 10-7 win, over St. Lawrence and WPI. The Cadets are ranked 30th in Division III in scoring defense, allowing 14.3 points per game.

Husson senior defensive back Stephen Dance is ranked 11th in Division III in solo tackles, averaging 8.5 per game.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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