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Central Washington University’s Michael Roots (21) runs a 82-yard touchdown against Simon Fraser University on Oct. 26, 2019.

Central Washington Wildcats Football will step foot on its home turf for the final time in 2019 this weekend when the Wildcats play host to the Southwest Baptist Bearcats inside Tomlinson Stadium. It will be Senior Day and CWU wil honor 10 seniors prior to game start.

KICKOFF

Central Washington is back home for the final time this season as the Wildcats host non-conference foe Southwest Baptist for Senior Day. Prior to kickoff, the Wildcats will honor 10 seniors for their contributions to CWU Football. The 10 that make up the 2019 class are Zach Floyd, Grady Graff, Tevin Gray, Billy Greer, Christian Hill-Sanders, Tyren Sams, Marcus Schimmelfennig, Nicholas Streubel, Gavin Todd, and Jeremiah Vasquez.

The Wildcats enter the weekend winners of their last four games and sit with a 5-4 overall record and are 4-1 in conference play. They are still tied for the conference lead with Western Oregon.

The Bearcats will look to end a three-game losing streak when they enter Tomlinson Stadium. Their last win came back on Oct. 12 against William Jewell (Mo.), 32-30.

GNAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Michael Roots was named the GNAC Offensive Player of the Week, while Patrick Hegarty was named the GNAC Special Teams Player of the Week.

Roots once again was a force in the ground game for CWU in its 27-24 win at Azusa Pacific. He rushed for 196 yards on 22 carries and had one score. Roots also pulled down two receptions for 23 yards for the Wildcats. He finished the night with 245 all-purpose yards thanks to the help of 26 yards on kick return.

Hegarty was once again the go to kicker in every aspect of the game for CWU. He handled all kicking duties and was crucial in the Wildcats win. He nailed a pair of field goals from 22 and 29 yards out, respectively. His 29-yard make in the fourth quarter was the difference maker as the Wildcats won by three, 27-24. In the punt game, he only needed to punt the ball three times but still totaled 102 yards and two landed inside the 20. On kickoff, Hegarty kicked the ball six times for a total of 340 yards. He was also a perfect 3-3 in PAT kicks in the game.

SERIES HISTORY

The Wildcats and Bearcats have only met one other time on the gridiron in 2018. Saturday’s meeting will mark just the second ever showdown between the two squads.

Last season’s meeting in Bolivar, Mo. went completely in the Wildcats favor as they dismantled the Bearcats 74-28. With the win, CWU improved to 8-2 in 2018 and won its fifth straight game.

ABOUT THE BEARCATS

SBU is just 3-6 overall and 1-5 in GLVC play entering the weekend.

Brenden Smith leads the way for the rushing attack with 691 yards on 121 rushing attempts. He has scored six touchdowns this year.

Eric Knight is second in rushing with 481 yards and has four touchdowns on the year. Bryce Cabrera is third with 447 rushing yards and two scores.

Brenden Smith is the leading passer for SBU with 730 yards on the year. He has just one touchdown and has been picked off eight times this season while completing 55.8% of his passes.

Curtis Cuillard is the team’s leading receiver with 500 yards on the year and 44 receptions. He’s pulled in three touchdowns and averages 55.6 yards per game.

Cory Hanger is the top tackler this year with 57 total and also leads the way in solo tackles with 41.

Hanger also has broken up 16 passes this year which leads all of Division II. He has recovered three fumbles and forced one as well.

2019 GNAC STAT LEADERS

CWU still leads the GNAC in total offense. The team averages 506.1 yards per game. That mark is 10th in Division II going into the weekend.

The Wildcats still lead the GNAC in scoring with an average of 37.4 points per game, which is 25th in Division II.

CWU’s passing averaging of 295.4 yards per game leads the GNAC. The average is 13th in Division II.

The Wildcats are second in the conference in rushing offense with 210.7 yards per game. They are 32nd in Division II with that average.

Defensively, the Wildcats lead the GNAC in team sacks with 22.0, a mark that is tied for 49th in Division II. CWU’s defense also leads the GNAC in tackles for loss with 64.0.

Michael Roots is still the GNAC leader in rushing yards per game (143.6) and total yards (1,292). Roots’ total rushing yards is currently third best in Division II, while his average ranks fifth.

Christian Moore still leads the GNAC in passing yards average with 241.4 per game.

Moore’s average of 241.4 passing yards per game is currently 27th best in Division II. He second in the GNAC and ranks 34th in Division II with a passing efficiency of 147.2.

Tyson Rainwater is second in the conference in receiving yards per game with 70.2 and tied for third in touchdowns with four.

Tony Archie is second in the GNAC in receiving touchdowns with seven and is third in the GNAC in receiving yards per game (68.6).

Roots leads the GNAC in all-purpose yards averaging 184.0 per game, which is second best in Division II.

Defensively, the Wildcats have one individual ranked in the top-five in the GNAC in total tackles. Hamilton Hunt leads the team with 60 and is tied for fifth in the GNAC overall.

Billy Greer is the conference leader in sacks with 6.0 this season. His 35 sack yards also leads the GNAC. He also leads the GNAC tackles for loss with 9.5 for 44 yards.

Isaiah Carbajal is second in the GNAC in tackles for loss and fourth in tackles for loss. He has 4.0 sacks for a loss of 14 yards and 8.5 tackles for loss of 20 yards.

Tyren Sams is second in interceptions for the GNAC with four on the year.

Patrick Hegarty is second in total punt yards with 1,584.

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