Jan. 8, 2010
Bearcat Trio Helps West Top East in Cactus Bowl
KINGSVILLE, Texas-Northwest Missouri State's Sean Paddock and Myles Burnsides combined for 10 tackles and LaRon Council ran for a game-high 55 yards to help the West All-Stars beat the East All-Stars 16-0 Friday in the 16th Valero Cactus Bowl Division II All-Star Game.
The West has won the last two contests and leads the all-time series 10-5-1. Texas A&M-Kingsville and Javelina Stadium have hosted the event since 2001.
The West limited the East and its talented duo of quarterbacks to 121 yards of total offense. Brad Iciek of Grand Valley State and Nick Graziano of Arkansas Tech - both national finalists for the Harlon Hill Award - combined for 87 yards passing on 34 attempts. Iciek was 2-for-14 for 35 yards. The East was 0-for-14 on third down.
The East's ground game was just as stagnant as six players combined for 34 yards on 29 attempts. Buck Wakefield, who averaged 137 yards per game this past season for Carson-Newman, carried seven times for 16 yards. Jarom Freeman, who averaged five yards per carry for Southern Connecticut State, ran seven times for 24 yards.
Paddock was West's second-leading tackler with six stops and had one of two sacks in the contest. He had special-teams tackles on West's first two kickoffs and had a solo stop on a punt return in the third quarter. Burnsides had four tackles, including solo tackles on both a punt and kick return.
Council had two catches for 26 yards to go with his 10 carries. He had four consecutive carries for 27 yards in the fourth quarter and ran three times for 17 yards to help the West run out the final four minutes off the game clock.
Jerome Hewitt of Southeastern Oklahoma State scored the game's lone touchdown - a 10-yard catch from Billy Garza of host Texas A&M-Kingsville on the first play of the second quarter. Hewitt had five catches for a game-high 58 yards while Garza completed 15-of-27 passes for 146 yards.
Central Washington and kicker Garrett Rolsma had its season end in the quarterfinals by Northwest when the Bearcats blocked Rolsma's game-tying extra point attempt in the closing seconds. Rolsma made all four of his kicks Friday, including field goals of 48- and 34-yards in the first half and a 40-yarder in the fourth quarter.
West Chester's Sam Scott led the East squad with 14 tackles including one for loss. The East forced three turnovers, including an interception and two fumbles. Washburn's Zach Watkins, the MIAA's Most Valuable Defensive Player, led the West with seven tackles.
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