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December 2, 2008

Plymouth State Football coach to accept prestigious honor

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. - The head coach of the Plymouth State University football team has been recognized with a prestigious honor after the Panthers enjoyed a championship season in 2008.

            PSU head coach Paul Castonia has been selected New England Coach of the Year for Divisions II/III, as voted by the New England Football Writers' Association.  Castonia is the first Plymouth State coach to ever win the award.

             Castonia (left) will be presented the award at the N.E. Football Writers' Awards and Captains Banquet on Thursday, Dec. 11, at Casa di Fior in Wilmington, Mass.  Also being honored that evening will be PSU senior running back Jeff Mack (Milford, N.H.), who was named to the N.E. Football Writers' All-New England Team for Divisions II/III last week for the second straight year.

            Now in his sixth year at PSU, Castonia led the Panthers to the New England Football Conference Championship in 2008, and a berth in the NCAA Division III play-offs.  It was PSU's first conference title since sharing the Freedom Football Conference championship in 2001, and it was Plymouth State's first visit to the NCAA Championships since 1995.

            PSU, which is 19-3 the past two years under Castonia, finished first in the NEFC Boyd Division this season with a 7-0 record.  The Panthers defeated Maine Maritime, 46-16, in the NEFC Championship game, before losing to Cortland State (N.Y.) in the NCAA play-offs, 31-14.

            Anyone interested in attending the New England Football Writers Banquet should contact Dick Lipe at Bentley College at 781-891-2334. 

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