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September 23, 2010

Lutes Receive Votes in National Football Polls

THIS WEEKEND: Pacific Lutheran (2-0) has a bye.

WHAT'S AHEAD: After this week's bye, the Lutes will open their Northwest Conference season on Saturday, Oct. 2, when they travel across town to take on the Puget Sound Loggers at Baker Stadium.

FOLLOW THE LUTES: You can listen to PLU football action throughout the year in the Tacoma area on KLAY 1180 AM with Steve Thomas and Karl Hoseth calling the action. The broadcasts are also available online on the KLAY website (www.klay1180.com). Additionally, listeners can access the PLU football broadcasts on the PLU athletics website at www.golutes.com, then clicking on Listen Live and following the link.

LUTES EARN NATIONAL ATTENTION: Pacific Lutheran's 35-21 victory over Cal Lutheran last Saturday seems to have made an impression on national voters as the Lutes have moved into the "others receiving votes" category in two Division III Top 25 polls. In the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Division III Coaches Top 25 Poll released on Sept. 20, the Lutes received a total of 28 points and were listed 10th in others receiving votes. In the d3football.com Top 25, the Lutes picked up 26 points, which would be the equivalent of 30th in that poll. Defending national champion Wisconsin-Whitewater is first, followed by Mount Union (Ohio) and Wesley (Del.), in both polls.

FOX EARNS CONFERENCE HONOR: Cornerback Trevor Fox has earned Northwest Conference Football Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week honors after playing a key role in three Pacific Lutheran takeaways during the Lutes' 35-21 win over Cal Lutheran last Saturday at Sparks Stadium. Fox intercepted two passes and also forced a fumble, one of two that the Lutes recovered, as PLU upset the No. 15-ranked Kingsmen.

FOX LEADS NATION IN INTERCEPTIONS PER GAME: Trevor Fox, the senior cornerback from Colville, leads all of Division III football in interceptions per game after picking off a pair of passes in each of the Lutes' wins over Hamline and Cal Lutheran. With four total interceptions, he is tied for third in that category.

OTHER LUTES AMONG NATIONAL LEADERS: Greg Ford, the Lutes' senior wide receiver from Steilacoom, ranks 11th in Division III football with an average of 134.0 receiving yards per game. He also is tied for 27th with 7.5 receptions per contest. Alec Simmons, who rushed for 225 yards last Saturday in the upset of Cal Lutheran, ranks 12th in the country with an average of 145.0 rushing yards per contest. The senior from Sumner is also 27th nationally with a total of 290 rushing yards. Jordan Rasmussen, the senior quarterback from University Place, is 31st nationally in passing efficiency with a 151.84 rating, and he is 51st in total offense with an average of 244.5 yards per game. Frosh nose guard Mychael Tuiasosopo, from Mukilteo, is tied for 39th with two quarterback sacks.

LAST WEEK: Pacific Lutheran made lots of big plays on both sides of the football last Saturday on the way to a convincing 35-21 non-conference victory over the No. 15-ranked Cal Lutheran Kingsmen at Puyallup's Sparks Stadium. One year after getting drubbed by the Kingsmen, 49-7, the Lutes took control early and never let up in winning their second game in a row to start the season. Pacific Lutheran used a balanced offense attack to rack up 489 yards of total offense. Senior running back Alec Simmons surpassed his PLU career rushing total in one game, piling up 225 yards on just 18 carries. Simmons became the first PLU running back to gain more than 200 yards in a game since Aaron Binger gained 212 yards on 31 carries against Whitworth on Nov. 17, 2001. The PLU defense used quickness and aggressiveness to wreak some havoc against the much bigger Cal Lutheran offensive line. The Lutes shut out the Kingsmen in the first half and finished the game with five takeaways. Cornerback Trevor Fox recording his second consecutive two-interception game and also forced a fumble, one of two recovered by the Lutes in the game. Mike Wickens had an interception and Cameron McMillan and Erik Magnussen both had fumble recoveries. Rasmussen completed 13-of-27 passes for 189 yards with two interceptions and touchdown passes to Blake Gorle and Greg Ford. Ford led the receivers with five catches for 116 yards. Kyle Whitford scored on a 1-yard run in the first quarter and Brandon James tallied on a 14-yard reception on a fake field goal in the third period. Dalton Darmody led the Lutes with eight tackles and Mychael Tuiasosopo had a pair of sacks. Cal Lutheran finished with 380 total yards, 153 on the ground and 188 through the air. 

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