Nicholls Duo, SFA’s Ruiz Awarded Final Southland Football Weekly Honors

first_imgHonorable Mention: Shemar Bartholomew, Northwestern State; Tra Fluellen, Houston Baptist; Kody Fulp, McNeese; Gary Sampson, Stephen F. Austin. Honorable Mention: Gavin Lasseigne, Nicholls; Hayden Ray, Central Arkansas; Devonte Williams, Southeastern La. Defensive Player of the Week: Kevin Moore III, Nicholls – Jr. – Safety – Lafayette, La.The Colonels’ leading tackler all season, safety Kevin Moore’s final stop of the regular season helped Nicholls to a thrilling one-point victory in the title match against Southeastern Louisiana. Facing a second-and-goal at the 2 with 21 seconds remaining, the Colonel defense stuffed Lion quarterback Cole Kelley on a rush and Moore was able to knock the ball away on his hit, and Nicholls recovered it in front of the goal line. Special Teams Player of the Week: Storm Ruiz, Stephen F. Austin – Sr. – Kicker – League City, TexasRuiz played a vital role in a rivalry game win over Northwestern State, accounting for nearly half of the ‘Jacks points with three made field goals and three extra-points. He converted three-pointers from distances of 54, 41 and 44 yards, finishing his career as the Southland Conference leader in career field goal percentage (78.1) and wrapping up 116-for-116 on PATs. Southland weekly award winners are nominated and voted upon by each school’s sports information director. Voting for one’s own athlete is not permitted. To earn honorable mention, a student-athlete must appear on 25 percent of ballots. A senior kicker who will go down as one of the finest in league history statistically, Ruiz earns Special Teams Player of the Week honors for the second time this season following a 15-point performance in a 32-20 win over Northwestern State. All three of his made field goals were from 41 yards or further, including a 54-yard conversion. He finished his career 116-for-116 on extra points and posted the highest career field-goal percentage (78.1) in league history. Moore finished with a game-high 11 tackles as the Colonels were able to slow down a red-hot Lion offense that averaged 42 points in its four-game winning streak. FRISCO, Texas – Nicholls’ Dai’Jean Dixon and Kevin Moore III, along with Stephen F. Austin’s Storm Ruiz are the Southland Football Players of the Week, the league announced Monday. While Dixon’s score gave Nicholls the lead late, it was Moore’s crucial stop of Lions quarterback Cole Kelley at the goal line that secured the victory and garnered Defensive Player of the Week honors. The Colonel defense stuffed Kelley at the goal line and Moore’s forced fumble was recovered by Nicholls. The Colonels host North Dakota in the first round of the FCS playoffs at 3 p.m. Saturday. Offensive Player of the Week: Dai’Jean Dixon, Nicholls – Jr. – Wide Receiver – New Orleans, La.Dixon had a career night against Southeastern Louisiana, hauling in nine receptions for 190 yards and three touchdowns. With Nicholls trailing in the final two minutes in the winner-take-all matchup, Dixon caught a 57-yard touchdown pass that tied the game before the extra point gave the Colonels the lead. Earlier in the contest, Nicholls fell behind 14-0 before Dixon broke free for a 48-yard touchdown in the second quarter. He then followed up with a highlight 2-yard grab that tied the game before halftime. Dixon, who is averaging 122.3 yards in his seven games played, set a new career-high for the second straight week, besting his eight grabs for 185 last week against McNeese. Following a career night against Southeastern Louisana, Dixon picks up his first Offensive Player of the Week recognition after catching nine passes for 190 yards and three touchdowns in a 28-27 win in the River Bell Classic. The win clinched a share of the Southland Conference title and the league’s automatic bid to the FCS playoffs for the Colonels (8-4, 7-2 SLC). Dixon hauled in a 57-yard bomb from Chase Fourcade for the eventual game-winning score.   Honorable Mention: Chandler Harvin, Sam Houston State; Tyler Hudson, Central Arkansas; Justin Pratt, McNeese; Ben Ratzlaff, Houston Baptist.last_img read more