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
January 27, 2015 Cannone, Upton named Bates football's Garnet Gridders
November 25, 2014 49 Bobcats named NESCAC Fall 2014 All-Academic
November 20, 2014 Eight Bobcats earn NESCAC All-Sportsmanship selection
November 18, 2014 Kurey, Riley, Upton named to All-NESCAC football team
November 9, 2014 Kurey named NESCAC Special Teams Player of the Week
November 1, 2014 Bobcats top Polar Bears 10-7 to claim CBB championship
October 25, 2014 Football comes back to beat Colby in overtime, 34-28
October 18, 2014 Turnovers hurt Bates in 35-6 loss at Middlebury
October 14, 2014 Football Preview: Bates (1-3) ready to rumble at Middlebury (2-2)
October 11, 2014 Unbeaten Wesleyan gets past Bates football, 24-10
October 5, 2014 Newson named Co-Defensive Player of the Week by NESCAC, ECAC
September 29, 2014 Football Preview: Bobcats look to beat Ephs for a fourth straight year
September 27, 2014 Second-half surge carries Tufts past Bates, 42-24
September 22, 2014 Football seeks fifth straight win against Tufts
September 21, 2014 Kurey named NESCAC Special Teams Player of the Week
September 20, 2014 Amherst escapes Bates for 14-6 win in opener
September 15, 2014 Football opens 2014 season at Amherst on Saturday
August 15, 2014 Harriman rounds out football coaching staff with Clements