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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release

October 26, 2004

Berlanga Sets NCAA Division II Mark for Consecutive PAT's; Wins MIAA Weekly Honor

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- Northwest Missouri State senior placekicker Luis Berlanga (Monterrey, Mex.) became the first league player to earn his third 2004 weekly football award, handed out by the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) today. Berlanga set the NCAA Division II record for most consecutive point-after touchdowns (PAT's) in a season by going 6-for-6 in the 45-42 Northwest come-from-behind win over Truman State last Saturday. A one-yard plunge by Xavier Omon with 24 seconds remaining was the gamewinner. Berlanga also added a 27-yard field goal, which ended up being the difference in the game.

"First off, I feel really good about what he has accomplished here and how he has adapted to the situation," said head coach Mel Tjeerdsma. "He has done a great job on his kicking and is really a team player. I really appreciate that about him."

Berlanga, a 5-foot-9, 180-pound senior from Monterrey, Mexico, has made 61 in a row this season, passing the old mark of 57 set in 2003 by Travis Johnston of North Alabama. Berlanga entered Saturday's contest tied with David Purnell for the MIAA and Northwest record for 56 straight PAT's and surpassed that with his first quarter kick. He has already broken the Bearcat career mark for consecutive PAT's (60) done by Purnell and is on pace to break season (.875) and career (.804) tabs for highest field goal percentage. Berlanga has gone 10-of-11 (.909) on field goals. His 91 season points leads the club and is just five points away from Purnell's school record 96 points in 1997.

Berlanga joins Truman State quarterback Jake Czeschin (offense) and Missouri-Rolla defensive back Nathan Williams (defense) on the list. Czeschin threw for a MIAA record 479 passing yards while Williams tied a school record with three interceptions helping the Miners snap a 36-game MIAA road losing streak.

Northwest Missouri State MIAA Weekly Honors
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Oct. 26
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Oct. 12
• Jamaica Rector - Offense, Oct. 5
• Joel Mathews - Special Teams, Sept. 14
• Xavier Omon - Co-Offense, Sept. 14
• Troy Tysdahl - Defense, Sept. 7
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Aug. 31

Northwest Missouri State Football Gazette's National Player of the Week
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Oct. 12

Northwest Missouri State / Pizza Hut National Player of the Week
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Aug. 31 (Honorable Mention)
• Luis Berlanga - Special Teams, Oct. 12 (Honorable Mention)
• Chad Bostwick - Defense, Oct. 19 (Honorable Mention)
• Adam Long - Defense, Oct. 19 (Honorable Mention)
• Joel Mathews - Special Teams, Oct. 19 (Honorable Mention)

•• Northwest Remains at #2 in Southwest Region, No. 3 in Coaches and Media National Poll
For the first week of 2004, Northwest stayed put in both national polls and the Southwest Region poll. In the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) poll and (media) poll, Northwest is at No. 3 for the second straight time, looking up at Pittsburg State and Texas A&M Kingsville. Starting the season No. 19 in the AFCA and No. 18 in the media poll, the Bearcats hold down their highest ranking since they were No. 1 for the entire 2000 season. The last No. 1 ranking came Nov. 18, 2000 when the 'Cats dropped a 31-17 decision to North Dakota State in the first round of the NCAA playoffs.

In regionals rankings, Northwest is second behind Texas A&M Kingsville. MIAA-member Pittsburg State, who is No. 1 in both national polls, remains at No. 3 in the region. The top six of 12 teams in the region advance to NCAA post-season play with the first two seeds having a first-round bye.

The Bearcats, who own the third longest active winning streak in the country at 12 games, visits Bolivar, Mo. for a MIAA-match against Southwest Bapist, Saturday, Oct. 30. Kick-off is set for 1:30 p.m.

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468