September 23, 2012

Record night lifts Rogers to another OVC Newcomer of the Week honor

Rogers has most yards in the nation in 2012 on any level

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Setting three school records in the game against Southeast Missouri, Tennessee Tech junior wide receiver Da'Rick Rogers has captured the Ohio Valley Conference Newcomer of the Week honor for the second time in four weeks.

Rogers caught a school record 18 passes for 303 yards and two touchdowns in Tech’s heartbreaking 41-38 double overtime loss. The transfer from Tennessee set Tech records for catches, yards and all-purpose yards during the game. His 18 catches were three off the OVC record while the 303 yards was 13 yards shy of the OVC all-time mark.

The 303 receiving yards is tied for the most at any NCAA level of football in 2012.

Rogers caught a 38-yard touchdown in the first quarter and added an 11-yard score in the second quarter. Overall he averaged 16.83 yards/catch on the night. Rogers, who also won the Newcomer of the week honor in Week 1 of the season, ranks fifth nationally in receiving yards/game (127.75) and 15th in receptions/game (7.25).


Erik Lora of Eastern Illinois was chosen the OVC Offensive Player of the Game, Cejay Ceniza of Eastern Kentucky is the Defensive Player of the Week, while the Special Teams Player of the Week award was shared by Murray State's Jordan Benton and SEMO placekicker Drew Geldbach.This week's winner:

OFFENSIVE
Erik Lora, WR • R-Jr., 5-10, 181 • Miami, Fla. • Eastern Illinois
Lora broke a 43-year old OVC record for catches in a game, grabbing 21 passes for 269 yards and three touchdowns in Eastern Illinois’ 50-49 overtime win over Murray State on Saturday night. But his most important contribution was throwing the winning two-point conversion pass off a reverse, as he connected with Von Wise to give the Panthers the one-point victory. The 21 catches broke the previous OVC mark of 20 set by Austin Peay’s Harold Roberts in 1969 and are the most by a player at any level of NCAA football this season; it was just three catches off the all-time FCS record held by two players, including Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice. Lora set the EIU single-game record for receiving yards and became just the sixth Panthers wide receiver to have 200 or more receiving yards in a game. The redshirt junior had 13 receptions for 172 yards and three touchdowns in the first quarter alone, grabbing touchdown passes of 10, 23 and 37 yards to put his team ahead 20-7. Lora currently ranks first nationally in total receiving yards (647), receptions/game (12.0) and receiving yards/game (161.75) and 12th nationally in all-purpose yards (163.75/game).
 
DEFENSIVE
Cejay Ceniza, DB • Sr., 5-11, 183 • Las Vegas, Nev. • Eastern Kentucky
Ceniza accounted for three turnovers as No. 21 Eastern Kentucky opened OVC play with a 51-21 victory over No. 24 Jacksonville State. The senior notched his first EKU interception in the first quarter and in the second quarter Ceniza recovered a fumble which led to a Colonel touchdown seven plays later as the team went on top 27-8. He capped off the night by intercepting a pass in the fourth quarter which he returned 84 yards for a touchdown, putting his team on top 51-15 with 14:45 to play. It marked the fourth-longest interception return in the FCS this season. Ceniza also added four solo tackles on the night.
 
CO-SPECIALIST
Jordan Benton, K • So., 5-8, 165 • Murray, Ky. • Murray State
Benton tied the Murray State record for field goals made in a game by connecting on 5-of-5 attempts in his team’s 50-49 overtime loss at Eastern Illinois. The sophomore connected from 39, 30, 35, 36 and 21 yards in the game and was also 4-of-4 on point after attempts in scoring 19 total points. The five field goals made is tied for the most in a single game at any level of NCAA football this season (and are the most by any FCS player), while his 19 points are seventh-most by a FCS player this year. Benton connected on a 21-yard field goal with 5:11 to play in regulation to force overtime. Benton currently ranks 11th nationally in field goals made/game (1.50).
 
CO-SPECIALIST
Drew Geldbach, K • Sr., 6-0, 205 • Wildwood, Mo. • Southeast Missouri
Geldbach, who ranks sixth nationally in field goal (1.75/game), hit both the game-tying and game-winning field goals in Southeast Missouri’s 41-38 double overtime victory over Tennessee Tech. With 3:58 to play in regulation, the senior connected from 39 yards out to tie the game at 31 and force overtime. In the second overtime of the contest Geldbach hit from 34 yards out to put Southeast on top for good (as TTU would miss its field goal attempt on its next possession). Geldbach was also a perfect 5-of-5 on point after attempts and scored 11 total points on the night. On the season Geldbach is 7-of-8 on field goals and 13-of-13 on PATs.
 
NEWCOMER
Da’Rick Rogers, WR • Jr., 6-3, 206 • Calhoun, Ga. • Tennessee Tech
Rogers caught a school record 18 passes for 303 yards and two touchdowns in Tennessee Tech’s heartbreaking 41-38 double overtime loss at Southeast Missouri on Saturday. The junior transfer from Tennessee set Tennessee Tech records for catches, yards and all-purpose yards during the game. His 18 catches were three off the OVC record while the 303 yards was 13 yards shy of the OVC all-time mark. The 303 receiving yards is tied for the most at any NCAA level of football in 2012. Rogers caught a 38-yard touchdown in the first quarter and added an 11-yard score in the second quarter. Overall he averaged 16.83 yards/catch on the night. Rogers, who also won the Newcomer of the week honor in Week 1 of the season, ranks fifth nationally in receiving yards/game (127.75) and 15th in receptions/game (7.25).