Falcons' Firepower Feted In GNAC Players of the Week
Seattle Pacific's Hannah Huesers became the 50th player in GNAC women's soccer history to score three goals in a match.
Seattle Pacific's Hannah Huesers became the 50th player in GNAC women's soccer history to score three goals in a match.

Monday, October 12, 2015

PORTLAND, Ore. – A pair of impressive offensive performances from Seattle Pacific’s soccer teams lead this week’s list of GNAC Player of the Week selections.

The Falcons’ Hannah Huesers was named the GNAC Women’s Soccer Defensive Player of the Week after she netted four goals in a pair of conference road matches. She scored an insurance goal and assisted on the game-winner in SPU’s 3-1 win at Concordia on Thursday before scoring a hat trick in their 3-1 win at Western Oregon on Saturday. The three-goal performance is the second in the league this season and the 50th in GNAC history.

Seattle Pacific’s Mori Tsuchiya was selected for the men’s offensive award, tallying two goals and an assist in two road matches. He accounted for the insurance goal in the Falcons’ 3-1 win Thursday at Montana State Billings and then added a goal as an assist in a 4-0 shutout at Mary. The two goals gives Tsuchiya three on the season.

The GNAC awarded its first co-players of the week this season in football with Humboldt State running back Ja’Quan Gardner and South Dakota Mines’ running back Devin Nixon sharing offensive honors. Gardner rushed for a school-record 305 yards and three touchdowns, and also passed for a fourth touchdown, to lead the Lumberjacks to a 34-16 win over Azusa Pacific. Nixon finished with 251 all-purpose yards, rushing for 160 yards and two touchdowns and catching three balls for 91 yards and a score in the Hardrockers’ 49-44 victory over Central Washington.

Western Oregon’s Jonathan Breland was tabbed for football defensive honors. The difference-making linebacker had two interceptions in the Wolves’ 24-22 upset of No. 6 North Alabama. One of the picks led to a touchdown, while the second stunted the Lions’ final drive deep in WOU territory with less than a minute to go.

A total of 14 student-athletes from nine member schools are represented in this week’s awards. Simon Fraser leads this week’s award count with three selections.

Offensive: Ja’Quan Gardner
(Humboldt State, RB, 5-7, 190, So., Ceres, Calif. – Central Valley): Gardner rushed for a school-record 305 yards on 36 carries and scored three touchdowns as he led the Lumberjacks to a 34-16 victory over defending GNAC champion Azusa Pacific. He had 142 of those yards in the first quarter alone. In addition, he threw on a trick play for 66 yards and a touchdown.

Devin Nixon (South Dakota Mines, RB, 5-11, 190, Fr., Savannah, Ga. – Groves): Nixon finished with 251 all-purpose yards touchdowns to lead the Hardrockers to a 49-44 victory over Central Washington. He carried 30 times for 160 yards and a pair of touchdowns and also caught three passes for 91 yards and a touchdown. His two rushing touchdowns in the fourth quarter proved to be the winning scores in the game. Also Nominated: Arthur Burns (Central Washington), DeJon Coleman (Dixie State), Philip Fenumia’i (Western Oregon).

Defensive: Jonathan Breland (Western Oregon, LB 6-2, 235, Sr., Berkeley, Calif. – Merced JC): Breland had two critical interceptions that helped the Wolves clinch their 24-22 upset of No. 6 ranked North Alabama. The first pick led to the Wolves’ first touchdown with 4:08 left in the first quarter and the second interception stopped UNA’s final drive of the game. Breland also had four tackles, a tackle for loss and a forced fumble. Also Nominated: Taylor Mitchell (Humboldt State), David Jakpor (South Dakota Mines).

Special Teams: Nikolai Karpun (Simon Fraser, K/P, 6-0, 203, Sr., North Delta, B.C. – Sands Secondary): Karpun punted seven times against Dixie State, averaging 43.7 yards per punt, and had one inside the 20-yard line. His ledger included a long punt of 49 yards. Also Nominated: Robbie Joe Geranden (South Dakota Mines).

Mori Tsuchiya (Seattle Pacific, M, 5-11, 165, So., Seattle, Wash. – Chief Sealth): Tsuchiya scored two goals and an assist as the Falcons won a pair of GNAC road matches. He netted the final goal in Thursday’s 3-1 win at Montana State Billings, including a goal 13 seconds after teammate Ian Adams that set a school record for fastest consecutive goals. Tsuchiya also scored a goal and an assist in the Falcons’ 4-0 shutout at Mary. Also Nominated: Julio Castillo (Northwest Nazarene), Matt Paine (Concordia), Ricardo Palomino (Montana State Billings), Kurtis Pederson (Western Washington).

Defensive: Robert Hyams (Simon Fraser, D, 5-10, Jr., Brentwood, United Kingdom – King Edward VI Grammer Secondary): Hyams played all 200 minutes, leading the Clan to a 2-0 shutout of No. 12 Northwest Nazarene and a 0-0 tie with Concordia. Simon Fraser’s defense allowed the Crusaders just five shots on goal and nine overall in the two matches. Also Nominated: Luke Broz (Northwest Nazarene), Tom Lohmann (Montana State Billings), Mitch McCaw (Concordia), Bryson Pavel (Seattle Pacific).

Hannah Huessers (Seattle Pacific, F, 5-10, Jr., Lake Stevens, Wash. – Lake Stevens): Huesers scored four goals for the Falcons in victories at Concordia and Western Oregon. She assisted on the game-winner and scored an insurance goal in SPU’s 3-1 win at Concordia. She then scored all three Seattle Pacific goals on just four shots in the Falcons’ 3-1 win at Western Oregon. Also Nominated: Christina Dixon (Simon Fraser), Sarah Jenkins (Northwest Nazarene), Gabriela Pelogi (Western Washington), Alycia Wright (Montana State Billings).

Defensive: Emily Webster (Western Washington, M 5-6, So., Bellingham, Wash. - Sehome): Webster paced a Western Washington defense that allowed just one goal on seven shots on goal as the Vikings won two matches and moved into first place in the GNAC standings. She also assisted on the golden goal in the Vikings’ 2-1 overtime win over Central Washington and scored off a set piece in the 2-0 shutout of Montana State Billings. Also Nominated: Makena Dandley (Northwest Nazarene), Chloe Hopps (Montana State Billings), Shannon McMahon (Concordia).

Offensive: Hailey Cook
(Northwest Nazarene, S, 5-10, So., Nampa, Idaho - Skyview): Cook finished with 77 assists as the defending GNAC champions swept the Alaska schools. She finished with 51 assists, eight digs, five blocks, four kills and an ace in the Crusaders’ upset of No. 7 Alaska Anchorage and then added 26 assists in a three-set sweep of Alaska. Also Nominated: Lexi Biondi (Seattle Pacific), Danielle Curtis (Simon Fraser), Linden Firethorne (Central Washington), Rachel Roeder (Western Washington), Jenessa Taylor (Concordia), Katelynn Zanders (Alaska Anchorage).

Defensive: Christie Colasurdo (Western Oregon, L, 5-11, Jr., Olympia, Wash. - Olympia): Colasurdo recorded 44 digs in six sets as Western Oregon hosted Simon Fraser and Western Washington. She had a match-high 23 digs against the Clan and added 21 against the Vikings. Colasurdo ranks second in the GNAC in digs with 5.75 per set. Also Nominated: Erin Braun (Alaska Anchorage), Joelee Buckner (Western Washington), Linnea Phillips (Northwest Nazarene).

Isaac Mitchell (Northwest Nazarene, So., Sandy, Ore. - Sandy): Mitchell placed seventh amidst a field loaded with the West Region’s top runners at Friday’s San Francisco State Invitational. His time of 25:06.2 over 8,000 meters was just six seconds short of the race’s top five and averaged out to 5:03 per mile. Also Nominated: Henry Cheseto (Alaska Anchorage), Josh Hunt (Saint Martin’s).

Women: Joyce Chelimo (Alaska Anchorage, So., Kapenguria, Kenya – American International): Running in her first race in nearly a month, Chelimo finished second at the Western Washington Invitational. She was the top GNAC finisher in the meet, covering the 6,000-meter course in 21:19. In was her third top-three finish of the season. Also Nominated: Larissa Kolasinski (Saint Martin’s ), Sierra Manser (Northwest Nazarene).

Men: Connor Miele
(Montana State Billings, Jr., Everett, Wash. – Saint Martin’s Univ.): Miele finished third at the MSUB Yellowjacket Fall Invitational, carding a 1-under-par 143 to finish two strokes off the pace. Earlier in the week, Miele finished with a three-round score of 229 at the InterWest Wildcat Classic in Chico, Calif. Also Nominated: Ian Briske (Northwest Nazarene),

Women: Emily Leung (Simon Fraser, Fr., Richmond, B.C. – Yew Chung Secondary): In her first collegiate meet, Leung won the Saint Martin’s Invitational, shooting a two-round score of 2-over-par 149 to win by two strokes. She fired a tournament-low 1-over-par 73 in the opening round and then shot 76 in the second day in driving rain. Also Nominated: Kynsie Furuya (Concordia), Kortney McNeil (Montana State Billings), Samantha Miller (Northwest Nazarene), Chloe Read (Saint Martin’s).