Giza Chosen as NWC Special Teams Student-Athlete of the Week

Gains 110 Return Yards on Punts and Kickoffs versus Pacific

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University cornerback Tyson Giza (Sr., Salem, OR/Sprague HS) has been named the Northwest Conference Football Special Teams Student-Athlete of the Week for games played on Nov. 9. His efforts on punt and kickoff returns helped the Bearcats in their 21-17 win over Pacific University at McCulloch Stadium.

Giza returned three punts a total of 30 yards with a long return of 18 yards. He also brought back four kickoffs a total of 80 yards, including a top return of 27 yards. Overall, he achieved 110 return yards for the Bearcats.

After Willamette started its first seven possessions at or inside its own 26-yard line, including six drives that started at or inside the 21, Giza provided a key play in the first half when he caught a punt at the WU 47 and returned its 18 yards to the Pacific 35. Willamette scored four plays later for a 7-7 tie.

In addition to his stellar play on special teams, Giza provided quality play for the Bearcats on defense. He recorded 5 tackles with one-half tackle for a loss, and also broke up four passes.

Giza is tied for the second in the nation in NCAA Division III with two kickoff returns for touchdowns this season and is 19th in the nation with an average of 28.4 yards per kickoff return. He is Willamette's all-time leader with 1,475 kickoff return yards.

On defense, he is ranked 10th in the nation with 1.8 passes defended per game on four interceptions and six pass break-ups.

The Bearcats will conclude the 2013 season on Saturday, Nov. 16 at the University of Puget Sound. Game time in Tacoma, Wash., is scheduled for 1 p.m. (PST).

Tyson Giza is averaging 28.4 yards per kickoff return this year.

Tyson Giza is averaging 28.4 yards per kickoff return this year.