MSU Football ranked 4th in AFCA poll; Coward and Cavalcante earn - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

MSU Football ranked 4th in AFCA poll; Coward and Cavalcante earn weekly honors

Quade Coward passing to Breion Evans for a 1st down. / Source: KAUZ Quade Coward passing to Breion Evans for a 1st down. / Source: KAUZ
WICHITA FALLS, TX (KAUZ) -

Mustangs surge to No. 4 in AFCA Top 25 Poll

Midwestern State surged three spots to No. 4 in the latest American Football Coaches' Association Division II Poll released Monday morning.
 
The Mustangs rolled to 5-0 with a dramatic 26-25 win over then-No. 4 Texas A&M-Commerce Saturday night on the road as MSU overcame a 12-point deficit with 5:29 to play allowing MSU to knock of its highest ranked opponent in program history.
 
The ranking is the highest for Midwestern since carrying a No. 4 ranking in the AFCA's first regular season poll in 2012 (Sept. 3, 2012). The Mustangs are ranked in the Top 10 for a third consecutive week for the first time since spending the last five periods of the 2011 in Top 10 reaching as high as No. 2 heading into the postseason.
  

MSU is one of 11 teams from Super Region Four to receive mention in the poll joining No. 2 Grand Valley State (Mich.), No. 9 Texas A&M-Commerce, No. 11 Ashland (Ohio), No. 23 Colorado Mesa and No. 25 Wayne State (Mich.).
 
Ferris State (Mich.), Southwest Baptist (Mo.), Black Hills State (S.D.), Colorado Mines and Truman State (Mo.) are all receiving votes.
 
Midwestern State plays host to Angelo State Saturday or Hometown Heroes Night at Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

Coward's late game heroics net LSC Offensive Player of the Week honors

Midwestern State's Quade Coward engineered two touchdown drives in the closing minutes of a 26-25 comeback win over No. 4 Texas A&M-Commerce Saturday to earn Lone Star Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors.
 
The 6-4, 215-pound quarterback connected with fellow senior Breion Evans on scoring strikes of 8 and 12 yards with the last one coming with 28.3 seconds left to deliver the Mustangs a win over its highest ranked opponent in program history.
 
Coward completed 9-of-11 passes for 135 yards over the final two drives as the Mustangs won for the sixth time since the start of the 2015 season when falling behind by at least 10 points.
 
The Cleburne High product notched his fourth 200-yard passing game of the season hitting on 17-of-25 passes for 273 yards with two touchdowns improving to 8-1 as a starting signal caller.
 
Texas A&M-Kingsville sophomore defensive end Brandon Jones made six stops for loss including four sacks in the Hoggies' 51-34 win at West Texas A&M to earn top defensive honors.
 
Tarleton State senior Bubba Tandy nabbed special teams accolades after returning the opening kickoff for a score in the Texans' 44-41 win at Western New Mexico.
 
Midwestern State plays host to Angelo State Saturday or Hometown Heroes Night at Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

Cavalcante garners Heartland Conference weekly honor

 Midwestern State's Gabriel Cavalcante earned Heartland Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors after totaling five points with one game-winning goal in an undefeated weekend on the road for No. 18 Midwestern State last week.

Cavalcante helped the Mustangs match their biggest win of the season in a 5-0 shutout over UT Permian Basin on Saturday, netting the first and third goals for Midwestern with the game winner coming in the eighth minute of play. The senior midfielder also assisted on Christian Okeke's goal to break a scoreless contest in the second half in a 4-1 win over Lubbock Christian.

On the season, Cavalcante leads the Heartland Conference with 15 points and five assists while tying for the conference lead with three game-winning goals. He is also tied for second with five goals this season.

Midwestern State looks to extend on its four-game win streak and remain atop the league standings Thursday when the Mustangs play host to Rogers State (Okla.) at 7 p.m. at the MSU Soccer Field.

Copyright 2016 KAUZ Sports/MSU Athletic Communications All Rights Reserved

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