Halloran goes for the goal

Williams College's Meghan Halloran, right, is the NESCAC women's hockey co-player of the week.

It's been a pretty good start to Meghan Halloran's final season as a member of the Williams women's hockey team.

The senior forward from Darien, Conn., netted her 100th career point last weekend and her performance helped her earn the NESCAC co-player of the week honor. 

Halloran had two goals and an assist in Friday's 3-2 win over Trinity, the game where she went over 100 career points. 

She was joined as co-player of the week by Trinity goalie Hannah LeClair, who gave up the two goals on Friday but came back to make 39 saves in a 2-0 win over Williams in the second game of the weekend series.

Not only did that help LeClair earn co-player of the week, but it ended a six-game goal scoring streak for Halloran, which was the longest such streak of her Williams career. The loss on Saturday also ended Williams' six-game winning streak. It was the longest such streak for the Ephs since 2019, when coach Meghan Gillis' squad won eight straight that got the Ephs into the second round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

The 7-3 Ephs will play home-and-home this weekend with Little Three rival Amherst.

While Williams is not ranked, the Ephs' strength of schedule has them currently in the mix for a possible spot in the 10-team NCAA Tournament. Williams is currently 11th in the D-III RPI, one of seven NESCAC teams in the top 15 nationally. As far as the PairWise Rankings are concerned, Williams is 10th. Colby is second, Wesleyan third and Middlebury fifth in both the PairWise and the RPI.

The PairWise Ranking is a system that attempts to mimic the method used by the NCAA Selection Committee to determine participants for the NCAA Division III hockey tournament. The PWR compares all teams by these criteria: record against common opponents, head-to-head competition, and the RPI.

Halloran wasn't the only Eph to be honored this week.

The Ephs' Sophia Verkleeren and James Lovette were named the NESCAC swim performers of the week, as Williams swept Amherst.

Verkleeren won the 200 freestyle (1:55.20), 200 backstroke (2:05.37), 200 IM (2:08.29), and posted a split of 53.15 on the winning 400 freestyle relay.

Lovette won two individual events, the 200 freestyle (1:42.61) and 100 freestyle (46.02), and anchored the winning 200 medley relay (split 20.63) and 400 freestyle relay (split 44.99).

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Carl Pierre and Keon Clergeog were both named players of the week this week. Neither of them did it at UMass.

Pierre, playing at Rice, is the Sun Belt Conference player of the week. Clergeot, at Southeastern Louisiana, is the Southland Conference player of the week.

Pierre elected to take his graduate season at Rice, and he has been a big addition to the Owls, who are 9-5 and 2-1 in the Sun Belt's Western Division.

Pierre chose Rice so he could play one season with former BC High teammate Travis Evee. Evee transferred from BC High to play at Vermont Academy before going to Rice.

Last week, all Pierre did was average 19 points and nine rebounds as Rice knocked off conference rivals Middle Tennessee and UAB. It was Pierre's first double-double since scoring 23 points and getting 10 boards in a UMass game against Akron on Dec. 30, 2019.

He also scored 19 points and had eight boards against then West leader UAB, helping snap the Blazers' four-game winning streak.

For the season, Pierre is averaging 15.1 points, shooting 50.7 percent from the floor and 43 percent from 3-point range. All those numbers are in the top 10 in the Sun Belt.

Oh, but Pierre had a personal three-game winning streak against Fordham snapped when the Atlantic 10 Conference's Rams beat Rice 84-74. Pierre had 26 points in that loss.

He was supposed to go up against another former Minuteman in Texas forward Tre Mitchell, but that game was postponed and not yet rescheduled.

Clergeot, one of UMass coach Matt McCall's earliest recruits, transferred to UMass from Memphis. He sat out the 2017-18 year and then played for the Minutemen in 18-19 and 19-20. Clergeot left UMass after 2020 and surfaced at Southeastern Louisiana.

He was named the Southland Conference's player of the week, for averaging 14.3 points and 5.6 assists as SLU won the inaugural Southland Tip-Off Tournament title. It's a tournament where the teams in the conference play in Katy, Texas, before starting conference competition.

Southeastern went 3-0 in the tournament, beating Houston Baptist, McNeese and Nicholls. He had 19 points and five assists in the win over Nicholls and had 17 points and eight assists in the win over Houston Baptist.

"The thing about Keon is that he's the ultimate competitor," Southeastern coach David Kiefer said in a preseason release. "I know he's more concerned about the team's success than individual accolades, which makes any individual recognition he gets that much better."

Clergeot was the player of the week for the second time. He was also a member of the preseason Southland Conference first team.

Howard Herman can be reached at  hherman@berkshireeagle.com or 413-496-6253. 

Sportswriter-Columnist

Howard Herman is a sports columnist at The Berkshire Eagle. The dean of full-time sportswriters in Western Mass., he has been with the Eagle since 1988, and is a member of the New England Baseball and Basketball Hall of Fame.