MEDFORD – Junior linebacker Greg Holt is the Tufts University football team's first New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Defensive Player of the Week since the 2015 season following his clutch performance in the Jumbos' 28-21 win over Wiliams College on Saturday.
Holt had a game-high 13 tackles (9 solos) including two for losses, forced a fumble and had two tackles during a huge fourth-quarter goal line stand as Tufts won a battle of 4-1 teams over the Ephs. The win lifted Tufts to 5-1, tied for second with Trinity College heading into next weekend's showdown at undefeated Amherst College (6-0).
The Jumbos were coming off their first loss at Trinity and were home at the Oval for the first time in three weeks against Williams. Both teams' offenses went back-and-forth in the first half, combining for six straight touchdown drives. However, the defenses took over in the second half, with Holt and the Jumbos getting the upper hand.
In the third quarter, Holt stripped the ball from Williams running back Carter Begel and sophomore Nolan Ostmo recovered at the Ephs' 13-yard line. Tufts scored the eventual game-winning touchdown on the next play (9:51 of the 3rd). Early in the fourth quarter, Williams had a first down at the Tufts 4, including three plays from the 1-yard line. Holt had two tackles as the Jumbos kept the Ephs out of the end zone. Tufts shut out the Ephs in the second half.
The conference's Rookie of the Year in 2016 and an All-Conference first team pick as a freshman and sophomore, Holt has been one of the league's top tacklers since he arrived at Tufts. He's currently tied for second in NESCAC with 52 tackles, while his seven tackles for losses is tied for third. He also has 2.5 sacks this fall. Holt averages better than 10 tackles per game for his career with 234 in 23 games.
This is Tufts' second Player of the Week recipient this season. Senior quarterback Ryan McDonald was awarded on offense for the week of September 30. Holt is Tufts' first Defensive Player of the Week since teammate Tim Preston was honored on October 18, 2015. This is Holt's first conference honor.