Nelson and Giza are Chosen for Team of the Week

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

SALEM, ORE. -- Two Willamette University football players have been named to the Team of the Week for games in NCAA Division III football on Saturday, Oct. 13. Willamette's two selections to the Team of the Week were Jack Nelson (So., ILB, Portland, OR/Jesuit HS) at linebacker and Tyson Giza (Jr., CB, Salem, OR/Sprague HS) at return specialist.

Nelson and Giza made important contributions as Willamette defeated Lewis & Clark College, 56-20, at McCulloch Stadium. The win elevated Willamette's record to 6-0 overall, 2-0 in the Northwest Conference.

During the game, Nelson achieved 19 total tackles, including 10 solo tackles. He made 1.5 tackles for losses and also broke up a pass. He helped Willamette limit the Pioneers to just six points in the second half, as the Bearcats outscored L&C 42-6 over the final 30 minutes.

For the year, Nelson leads the Bearcats 47 total tackles and has made 28 solo tackles. He has intercepted one pass and has broke up three passes.

Against Lewis & Clark, Giza gained 149 return yards. He brought back four kickoffs a total of 87 yards for an average of 21.8 yards per return. He also returned a missed field goal attempt 62 yards.

He caught the missed field goal near the back of the end zone and returned it to the Lewis & Clark 38-yard line with 10:13 left in the third quarter. The big return set up a Willamette touchdown six plays later, allowing the Bearcats to take a 21-14 lead.

For the season, Giza has averaged 19.9 yards on 11 kickoff returns. His missed field goal return against L&C counted as miscellaneous yardage. As a cornerback on defense, Giza has earned 15 total tackles (11 unassisted) to go along with two interceptions and three pass break-ups.

Willamette, ranked #19 in the AFCA Coaches Poll and #22 in the Top 25, will take on NWC rival Pacific Lutheran University on the road on Saturday, Oct. 20. Game time in Puyallup, Wash., is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. (PDT).

Team of the Week
For Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012

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Tyson Giza (#23) runs past a block by Jack Nelson (#55). Both Willamette players were named to the Team of the Week for Oct. 13.

Tyson Giza (#23) runs past a block by Jack Nelson (#55). Both Willamette players were named to the Team of the Week for Oct. 13.