Football POWs: Carusello, Stephen, Liegghio take home Week 7 honours on the gridiron

Football POWs: Carusello, Stephen, Liegghio take home Week 7 honours on the gridiron

Burlington, Ont. – Connor Carusello, Tramayne Stephen, and Marc Liegghio have been named Ontario University Athletics (OUA) Football Players of the Week for the period ending October 6, 2019.

Offensive Player of the Week – Connor Carusello, Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks

The Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks were flying high for a second week in a row, with Connor Carusello slinging it under centre en route to the team’s second straight lopsided win.

Carusello put together his best game of the season when the Hawks took on the Windsor Lancers on Saturday, helping his side get back to .500 on the season and stake sole claim to the final playoff spot. He threw for a season-high 374 yards, which is just nine shy of his single-game career high and added four majors to match his career-best mark.

The sophomore pivot got the scoring started just over three minutes in on a 42-yard touchdown to Kavantye Bailey. He then added another before the half on a 25-yard connection with Ente Eguavoen. A five-yard and 20-yard score, respectively, rounded out Carusello’s day in the second half before he took a seat for the final few possessions with the game well in hand for Laurier.

When the dust settled, Carusello’s efforts led Laurier to 600 yards of offence and a 52-point output for a second consecutive week.

Defensive Player of the Week – Tramayne Stephen, Ottawa Gee-Gees

In what was once again the most hyped football game across the country, the Panda Game was yet another intense battle between the two inhabitants of the nation’s capital. And when the final whistle blew on the Ottawa Gee-Gees win, it was their defence that proved to be the biggest difference-maker, with Tramayne Stephen chief among them.

The 6-1, 300 lb linebacker made his presence felt in more ways than one in front of the 24,000+ crowd, and his biggest impact came with his Gee-Gees down 10-3 and needing a spark. Stephen bull-rushed through the Ravens’ offensive line on a play early in the third quarter and jumped on a loose ball in the end zone for his team’s first touchdown of the day. The play turned the tides in the game and ultimately led to the Gee-Gees securing Pedro for a second straight year.

The Toronto, Ont. native logged six solo tackled and a tackle for loss in the win, putting himself in seventh in the OUA with seven TFLs on the year, along with 21.5 tackles, three sacks, and a shared OUA lead in fumble recoveries (2).

Special Teams Player of the Week – Marc Liegghio, Western Mustangs

It wasn’t the first time that the Mustangs have turned to their kicker for a clutch performance and Marc Liegghio was once again up to the task for Western in their nail-biting win this weekend.

Liegghio entered the game perfect for the season in field goals and started the day off in much the same fashion. He accounted for Western’s first points of the day with his 31-yard field goal to trim the deficit to 7-3 at the time. Uncharacteristically, the veteran kicker couldn’t connect on his next attempt, but he more than made up for it when the pressure was truly on down the stretch.

Waterloo took a three-point lead into the final minutes of the game, but with Western needing a field-goal in the final minute to tie things up, Liegghio answered the call and hit the 15-yard chip shot to tie things up with 22 seconds left.

He wasn’t done there, however, as Liegghio fortuitously found himself kicking for the win just seconds later. With no time left on the clock, the fifth-year standout once again delivered, this time notching a 27-yarder to give his team the 45-42 win, bringing his point total for the game to 14 and keeping Western’s hopes for a third straight undefeated regular season alive.

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