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Kurey, Riley, Upton named to All-NESCAC football team

Mark Upton became Bates football's first All-NESCAC sophomore since 2001 when he was named to the First Team Defense on Nov. 18, 2014. (File photo by Sarah Crosby/Bates College) 

HADLEY, Mass. -- The Bates football team placed two underclassmen on the All-NESCAC First Team in Mark Riley and Mark Upton, and also saw senior punter David Kurey receive a Second Team nod on Tuesday, as the New England Small College Athletic Conference announced its 2014 All-Conference Teams.

Riley (Needham, Mass.) was a First Team Offense selection at wide receiver, and one of three juniors on the squad. Upton (Winthrop, Mass.) is the lone sophomore named to the First Team Defense among 14 players, and one of only two sophomores to make the First Team overall, among 31.

Kurey (West Chester, Pa.) culminated his superb senior season with All-NESCAC Second Team punter honors. The Bobcats' four-year starter ranked second in the NESCAC in punting average, and 19 of his 62 punts were received or downed inside the opponent's 20-yard line. He was twice named NESCAC Special Teams Player of the Week and was also Bates' nominee for the National Football Foundation's Scholar-Athlete Scholarship. Kurey broke two Bates' single-season program records in 2014, both marks previously set by his All-NESCAC predecessor, Gavin Segall-Abrams '11 in 2010. Kurey's final average of 40.2 yards per punt bests the former mark of 38.6, and his total punting yards (2,491) broke Segall-Abrams' mark of 2,391.

Riley was held without a catch in Weeks 4 and 5, but was dynamite for the Bates' offense in the other six games. Entering the season with eight career receptions, Riley hauled in 41 passes for 572 yards and four touchdowns in 2014, leading the NESCAC in receiving yards, ranking second in the conference in catches and tying for fifth in touchdown catches. Season highlights for Riley included a 9-catch, 142-yard, 2-touchdown effort at Tufts on Sept. 27; a 7-catch, 143-yard, 1-touchdown game the following week vs. Williams; and a 5-catch, 109-yard, 1 touchdown effort against Colby on Oct. 25.

Upton was a destructive force in the middle of Bates' defense all season long, recording at least eight tackles in every game. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound inside linebacker finished second in the NESCAC in tackles (84), first in forced fumbles (4) and third in tackles for a loss (13). Upton also led the Bobcats in sacks (3.5) to go along with four pass breakups and a fumble recovered and returned for a touchdown in Week 8 against Hamilton. He ranked third in all of Division III in forced fumbles per game (0.50).

Upton is Bates' first sophomore to receive All-NESCAC honors in football since Kurt Chapman '04 in 2001, although Andrew Kukesh '14 was named as a freshman in 2010.

NESCAC Football 2014 All-Conference Teams