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Wildcats, Wolves Post Texas-Sized Wins Before Showdown
Donte Hamilton was the key on defense in Central Washington's 30-20 win over Midwestern State, finishing with 10 tackles and three fourth-quarter interceptions.
Donte Hamilton was the key on defense in Central Washington's 30-20 win over Midwestern State, finishing with 10 tackles and three fourth-quarter interceptions.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Central Washington and Western Oregon welcomed Lone Star Conference teams to the Pacific Northwest last weekend and sent both teams back to Texas with a pair of fourth-quarter losses.

The Wildcats welcomed No. 11 Midwestern State to Tomlinson Stadium on Saturday night. While the game was close, the Mustangs held control through the first three quarters and held a 20-17 lead at the end of the third.

From that point, Central Washington put their fortunes square on the shoulders of senior linebacker Donte Hamilton and junior kicker Patrick Hegarty. Hamilton came up with a GNAC single-game record-tying three interceptions, two of which led to scores, and Hegarty hit two of his three field goals in the final 15 minutes.

The two efforts, combined with senior wide receiver JoJo Hillel’s 26-yard touchdown reception with 10:21 to go, gave Central Washington the 30-20 win.

Hamilton was named the GNAC Defensive Player of the Week for his defensive effort, which also included 10 tackles. Hegarty earned the Special Teams Player of the Week award for his three field goals, which included a career-long 50-yarder with 2:21 left to play, and three point-after conversions.

Western Oregon hosted West Texas A&M in its home season opener and both teams provided the fans a high-scoring affair. The Buffs led most of the game and held a 38-34 lead with 4:38 left before the Wolves put together a 12-play, 89-yard drive in 4 minutes, 13 seconds that ended on senior running back Andrew Valladares’ eight-yard run with 17 seconds left for the 41-38 victory.

The two teams combined for 1,086 yards of total offense with Western Oregon claiming 553 of those yards. Junior quarterback Ryan Worthley was named the GNAC Offensive Player of the Week after he completed 28 of 35 passes for 379 yards and two touchdowns.

The Wolves and Wildcats return to GNAC play this week with the two teams facing off on Saturday on Monmouth, Oregon. It will be the first of back-to-back meetings between the two teams. They will meet again in Ellensburg, Washington on Saturday, October 23.

Simon Fraser is in the midst of a three-week break from games. The team’s October 2 game against UT-Permian Basin was canceled and SFU had a bye last week. Simon Fraser returns to play on October 16, traveling to Montana State Northern.

THIS WEEK'S GNAC PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
OFFENSIVE
Ryan Worthley, Western Oregon
QB • 6-2 • Junior • Tigard, Ore.

Worthley completed 28 of 35 passes for 379 yards and two touchdowns to lead Western Oregon to a 41-38 win over West Texas A&M. He had a long pass of 56 yards which resulted in a Thomas Wright touchdown in the second quarter and went 5 of 6 in the final drive of the game that resulted in the winning touchdown.

Also Nominated: Quincy Glasper (Central Washington).

DEFENSIVE
Donte Hamilton, Central Washington
LB • 6-3 • Senior • Mukilteo, Wash.

Hamilton led Central Washington with 10 tackles and tied the GNAC single-game record with three interceptions in the Wildcats’ 30-20 upset of No. 11 Midwestern State. He also had 1.5 tackles for loss. Hamilton had 58 return yards on his three interceptions, one of which led to a key late fourth-quarter touchdown.

Also Nominated: Jaylin Parnell (Western Oregon).

SPECIAL TEAMS
Patrick Hegarty, Central Washington
P/K • 6-4 • Junior • Ferndale, Wash.

Hegarty proved the offensive difference in the Wildcats’ 30-20 upset of No. 11 Midwestern State, making three extra-point opportunities and converting field goals of 45 yards, 38 yards and a career-long 50 yards. Two of those field goals came in the fourth quarter as the Wildcats outscored the Mustangs 13-0 in the final 15 minutes.

Also Nominated: Curtis Anderson (Western Oregon).

AROUND THE GNAC
CENTRAL WASHINGTON
LAST WEEK: Oct. 2: beat Midwestern State, 30-20
THIS WEEK: Oct. 9: at Central Washington, 1:05 p.m.

• Central Washington outscored Midwestern State 13-0 in the fourth quarter Saturday to score a 30-20 come-from-behind victory over No. 11 Midwestern State at Tomlinson Stadium.

• For its efforts in defeating a top 25 team for the first time since 2018, Central Washington was named the GNAC Team of the Week.

• Senior linebacker Donte Hamilton proved the defensive difference in the game. Hamilton came up with three interceptions in the fourth quarter, tying the GNAC single-game record. Two of those picks led to two scores that provided CWU the win. Hamilton also led CWU with 10 tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss to earn GNAC Defensive Player of the Week honors for the second straight week. Hamilton is third in the GNAC with 40 tackles and is fourth in Division II with 0.8 interceptions per game.

• Junior kicker Patrick Hegarty was named the GNAC Special Teams Player of the Week after he hit three field goals and went 3 for 3 on point-after opportunities. Hegarty connected on a 45-yard field goal in the third quarter, a 38-yarder early in the fourth and a career-long 50-yarder with 2:21 left in the game. The 50-yarder is just the 17th of 50 yards or more in GNAC history.

• Making his first career start, freshman quarterback Quincy Glasper completed 11 of 22 passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns. Glasper spread his passes out to seven different receivers. Senior wide receiver JoJo Hillel caught three passes for 55 yards and a touchdown while sophomore wide receiver Darius Morrison caught one pass for 65 yards and a touchdown. Morrison is seventh in the GNAC with 36.8 receiving yards per game while Hillel is 10th at 32.2 receiving yards per game.

• The Wildcats also came up with 132 rushing yards to finish with 377 yards of total offense. Freshman running back Tyler Flanagan led the way with 13 carries for 60 yards while Glasper rushed 12 times for 46 yards and a touchdown.

• The defense came up big, forcing six Midwestern State turnovers. In addition to Hamilton’s three interceptions, freshman safety Tanner Volk had a third-quarter interception while senior defensive lineman Zach Stecklein and junior defensive lineman Kai Gamble both forced fumbles that were recovered by the Wildcats. Stecklein leads the GNAC and is 29th in Division II with two forced fumbles.

• Central Washington leads the GNAC with 31 points per game and 159.8 rushing yards per game. The Wildcats are third in the GNAC with 203.2 passing yards per game. In the Division II statistics, CWU is seventh in fumbles recovered (7), 10th in turnovers gained (13), 13th in passing yards per completion (15.88), 16th in turnover margin (1.20) and 25th in pass efficiency defense (107.89).

• Central Washington returns to GNAC play this week, traveling to face Western Oregon in Monmouth on Saturday.

SIMON FRASER
LAST WEEK: Idle
THIS WEEK: Idle
 
• Simon Fraser did not play last weekend as the team’s scheduled home game against UT-Permian Basin was canceled. Simon Fraser does not play again until Saturday, October 16 at Montana State Northern.

• Simon Fraser last played on September 25. They kept Western Oregon within a touchdown in the first half but could not hold off a Wolves’ scoring surge in a 24-7 loss on Saturday at SFU Stadium.

• Simon Fraser finished the game with 204 passing yards. Sophomore Justin Sieber completed 19 of 33 passes for 202 and the team’s only touchdown, a 45-yard reception to senior wide receiver Dallas Dixon in the third quarter. Sieber leads the GNAC with 261.3 passing yards and 264.7 yards of total offense per game. He is ranked 19th in Division II with 22.67 completions per game.

• Dixon paced seven SFU receivers in the game, making two catches for 60 yards. Sophomore wide receiver Riley Morrison caught five passes for 57 yards and freshman wide receiver Sam Davenport caught four passes for 45 yards. Morrison is second in the GNAC with 62.8 receiving yards per game while Dixon is fourth with 42 receiving yards per game.

• Senior linebacker Griffin Barrett continues to be a defensive force, finishing the game with 17 tackles. Barrett leads the GNAC with 50 total tackles and is fourth in Division II with 12.5 tackles per game. Barrett also ranks 11th in Division II with 6.5 solo tackles per game.

• Senior kicker Kees Metselaar kept busy on Saturday, punting seven times for 329 yards and an average of 47 yards per punt. His ledger included a 71-yard punt in the first quarter that ranks as the ninth-longest in GNAC history and the longest by a conference punter since Azusa Pacific’s Jacob Hall hit a 74-yarder in 2018 that tied the GNAC record. Metselaar leads the GNAC and is 14th in Division II with an average of 41.6 yards per punt.

• Simon Fraser enters the week averaging 254.8 yards of total offense per game and is second in the conference with 224.2 passing yards per game. The team is also 30th in Division II with five fumble recoveries.

WESTERN OREGON
LAST WEEK: Oct. 2: Beat West Texas A&M 41-38
THIS WEEK: Oct. 9: vs. Central Washington, 1:05 p.m.
 
• Senior running back Andrew Valladares’ eight-yard touchdown run with 17 seconds left led Western Oregon in the team’s home opener as the Wolves beat West Texas A&M, 41-38, at McArthur Field.

• The touchdown capped a day that saw the Wolves finish with 553 yards of total offense, including 379 passing yards. While the majority of the yardage was in the air, four of the Wolves’ six touchdowns came on the ground.

• Junior quarterback Ryan Worthley was named the GNAC Offensive Player of the Week after he completed 28 of 35 passes for 379 yards and two touchdowns. His afternoon included a 56-yard touchdown reception to junior wide receiver Thomas Wright in the second quarter. Worthley is second in the GNAC with 228 passing yards and 230.8 yards of total offense per game. He is 15th in Division II with 23.20 completions per game and 18th with a 65.9 completion percentage.

• Valladares finished with 163 all-purpose yards, carrying eight times for 68 yards and the game-winning touchdown and also making six catches for 95 yards. Valladares is fourth in the GNAC with 73.8 all-purpose yards per game and fifth with 40.8 receiving yards per game.

• Wright led all WOU receivers with 98 yards and a touchdown on six catches. Wright is third in the GNAC with 56.8 receiving yards per game.

• Junior running back Omari Land carried the ball 21 times for 98 yards and three of the Wolves’ four rushing touchdowns. Land is second in the GNAC with 101.8 all-purpose yards and 91.4 rushing yards per game. He is also 13th in Division II with six rushing touchdowns.

• Junior linebacker Jaylin Parnell led the WOU defense with 10 tackles, and one tackle for loss. Junior defensive back Machiah Lee finished with eight tackles and two pass breakups. Parnell is tied for fourth in the GNAC with 30 tackles. He is second in the GNAC with seven tackles for loss and 23rd in Division II with 1.7 tackles for loss per game.

• Western Oregon leads the GNAC with 364 total offense yards and 236.2 passing yards per game while ranking second with 127.8 rushing yards per game. The Wolves rank 20th in Division II with a .649 completion percentage and 23rd with just passes intercepted.

• Western Oregon returns to GNAC play this weekend, hosting Central Washington on Saturday afternoon.

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