Howell, New Jersey, senior punter collects weekly award for first time
EASTON, Mass. (September 16, 2014) – Stonehill College senior punter Ryan Handy (Howell, New Jersey/Howell) has been named the Northeast-10 Conference's Special Teams Player of the Week, the league office announced.
Handy earns Special Teams Player of the Week honors for the first time in his career after a strong performance in dictating field position in Stonehill's 24-17 triumph at rival Bentley University on Friday night. He helped the Skyhawks claim their first road win at Bentley since 1995 – a string of eight straight defeats – by averaging 44.8 yards on four punts, with a long of 47 yards, placing two kicks inside the Bentley 20 yard line, including one to the Falcons three which would eventually lead to great field position for a field goal that sealed the key win. Handy gave Bentley an average starting field position of its own 15.5 yard line on the four punts.
Handy, a preseason All-Northeast-10 selection by Beyond Sports Network, ranks second in the Northeast-10 with his 43.1-yard punting average on eight attempts, including a season-long punt of 55 yards against Bloomsburg (Pa.) University in week one, to go with three punts inside the opponent's 20 (4th NE-10). He ranks 15th nationally in Division II for punting average, while Stonehill ranks 19th nationally for net punting (39.25 yards).
Handy, a first team All-Northeast-10 selection in 2013, is on pace to set a new program record for punting average at 39.6 yards per attempt, while his 110 punts are good for sixth all-time and his 4,359 punting yards rank fifth in program history. Handy has pinned 34 punts inside the opponents' 20 yard line in 28 career games played with 12 fair catches and just six touchbacks. He set a program record with his NE-10 best 40.7-yard average (30th nationally), while his 62 punts are fifth-highest all-time in Skyhawks history. Handy booted a career-long punt of 68 yards in last year's 38-28 win over LIU Post.
Stonehill (1-1, 1-0 NE-10) is back in action on Saturday when it visits American International College for a rematch of the 2014 NE-10 Championship in Springfield, Massachusetts, at 1 p.m. The Skyhawks return home to host Merrimack College the following Saturday, September 27, as part of Family Weekend at the College at 6 p.m.