BANGOR, Maine — Husson University football coach Gabby Price figured he would have a good team this season.

But after a couple of games, Price discovered he may have underestimated his team.

“We were better than good. I didn’t realize were going to be this good,” said Price, whose Eagles won nine straight games after a season-opening 35-28 loss at Alfred to notch their second Eastern Collegiate Football Conference championship in three years.

Husson travels to Springfield, Massachusetts, on Saturday for an NCAA Division III playoff game against 10-0 Western New England University, the nation’s 23rd-ranked team.

The winner takes on the winner of the Alfred-Bridgewater State game in the round of 16. Alfred (10-0) is the ranked 15th.

Price’s primary concerns at the outset of the season was inexperience at quarterback and an undersized defensive line.

Quarterback Cory Brandon started the last two games of the 2015 season after Joe Seccareccia suffered a fractured foot.

This season, the sophomore from Pembroke, Massachusetts, has set school passing records for completions (140), yards (2,015) and touchdowns (23). He has completed 60.3 percent of his passes with eight interceptions. He also has run for three touchdowns.

“He has a great presence about him as a human being and as a player,” Price said.

Last Saturday, Brandon tied a Husson record with five touchdown passes in a 54-20 win over Mount Ida which earned him the ECFC Offensive Player of the Week award.

The defensive line has helped Husson lead the nation in fewest yards allowed per game (152.4), rushing yards allowed (29.4), pass defense efficiency and opponents’ third-down conversion rate (15 percent).

The unit features 255-pound junior Luke Washburn of Litchfield, 250-pound junior Tarik Smith, sophomore Elvin Suazo Jr. and senior Jeff Turcotte of Lewiston.

“They have really dominated,” Price said.

Washburn leads the team in sacks (12) and tackles for a loss (17.5). His 51 tackles are second behind senior linebacker Ellis Throckmorton of Bangor (61). Suazo Jr. (31 tackles) is second in sacks with eight while Turcotte has 26 tackles and Smith has 25.

Alonzo Connor (33 tackles) joins Throckmorton (10.5 TFL, 4.5 sacks) at the inside linebacker spot with Hampden’s Logan Steward (39 tackles, 6 TFL) returning to defense as the rover back this season after being a running back for two seasons.

“Logan plays with great life and enthusiasm. He’s a leader,” Price said.

Steward and sophomore cornerback Quan Soyini (24 tackles) each has three interceptions. The dependable secondary also includes senior safety Rick Orio (37 tackles, 1 interception), sophomore safety Jake Dobos (22 tackles, 2 INTs) and junior corner Jean Gabriel (22 tackles, 1 INT).

Price said moving Gabriel from safety to cornerback helped solidify the secondary.

Brandon’s passing game has been a valuable complement to a running game featuring dynamic junior John Smith (277 rushes, 1,715 yards, 17 touchdowns). He was the ECFC Offensive Player of the Year last season and is third in the nation with 159.4 yards per game.

Running room has been carved out by a senior-dominated line consisting of center Jimmy Osgood of Bucksport, guards Seth Batty of Rockland and junior Austin Odd, and tackles Nick Lewis of Gorham and Jon Walker of Falmouth.

Price considers Skowhegan junior D.J. Allen the best tight end in the league.

Brandon has a talented receiving corps that features seniors Deon Wiggins (27 catches, 379 yds., 7 TDs) and Kadeem Edge (24-547, 7 TDs), along with Allen (22-201 yards, 2 TDs), Robenson Saintard (17-288, 4 TDs), Kyle Gaudet (15-170, 1 TD) and Andre Miller of Old Town (13-152, 1 TD).

Smith has caught 11 passes for 152 yards.

The Eagles also excel on special teams as Wiggins is averaging 27.2 yards per kickoff return with a touchdown and 9.4 on punt returns. Saintard has averaged 25.2 yards on kickoff returns.

Price also has been pleased with freshman kicker Travis Tetreault, who has made both of his field-goal attempts and is 46-for-54 on extra points.

He likes the fact his team will be playing in its third straight postseason game.

The Eagles lost to Massachusetts Institute of Technology 27-20 in overtime two years ago in the NCAA tournament before losing to Salve Regina in the ECAC tourney game last fall.

“Certainly, our guys have been in some big games,” Price said. “We’re very excited for our guys. They have really worked hard.”