Seven Bearcat Football Players Earn First Team All-NWC Honors

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Seven Willamette University football players have been selected First Team All-Northwest Conference for the 2010 season in voting by the NWC head coaches. Five players from Willamette's defense earned First Team honors, while two offensive players garnered First Team recognition. Willamette finished the season with a 7-3 overall record, including 4-2 (3rd place) in the NWC.

The Bearcats also had five players chosen Second Team All-NWC and four players included on the Honorable Mention list. A total of 16 WU players were selected.

Overall, 86 players from the seven conference teams received All-NWC honors. Thirty athletes were chosen for the First Team, with 27 athletes on the Second Team and 29 athletes designated Honorable Mention.

Willamette's First Team selections on offense were senior wide receiver Scott Schoettgen (Columbia, CA/Sonora HS) and junior center Kenny Miller (Woodland, WA/Woodland HS).

First Team players from the WU defense were senior defensive end Walter Robinson II (Altadena, CA/Cathedral HS), junior defensive tackle Juan Alvarado (Stockton, CA/Franklin HS), senior inside linebacker Ralph Pineda (Los Angeles, CA/Cathedral HS/San Jose State Univ.), junior outside linebacker Harmon Bruno (Danville, CA/San Ramon Valley HS) and senior safety Arlin Taylor (Spring Valley, CA/Steele Canyon HS).

Players from Willamette named to the Second Team on offense were senior offensive lineman Luis Guerra (OT/OG, El Cajon, CA/Steele Canyon HS), senior offensive guard Dennis Plzak (Gilbert, AZ/Highland HS) and sophomore tailback Terrell Malley (Portland, OR/Roosevelt HS). WU players chosen for the Second Team on defense were junior defensive end Ryan Bourke (Bothell, WA/Archbishop Murphy HS) and sophomore safety Cody Pastorino (Glenn, CA/Willows HS).

Honorable Mention selections from Willamette were junior tailback Jamiere Abney (Bremerton, WA/Bremerton HS), senior fullback Aaron Cavette (Port Townsend, WA/Port Townsend HS), senior tight end Will Pohl (Boise, ID/Boise HS) and sophomore safety Dominic David (Keizer, OR/South Salem HS/Portland State Univ.).

Aaron Boehme, senior quarterback for Linfield College, was named NWC Offensive Player of the Year. Senior defensive end Eric Hedin of Linfield was chosen NWC Defensive Player of the Year. Linfield Head Coach Joe Smith was selected NWC Coach of the Year.

Willamette Head Coach Mark Speckman improved his career record to 78-53 (.595) in 13 seasons guiding the Bearcats. WU has achieved a 26-6 record (.813) since the start of the 2008 season.

First Team All-NWC

Scott Schoettgen

Scott Schoettgen (Sr., WR) also was named First Team All-NWC in 2009 and was chosen Second Team All-NWC in 2008. This year, he led the Willamette passing game with 49 catches for 960 yards and 13 touchdowns. He averaged 19.6 yards per catch and 4.9 receptions per game. He also caught 49 passes as a junior in 2009, when he gained 840 yards and reached the end zone 14 times.

Schoettgen holds a Bearcat record with 36 career touchdown catches. He concluded his four seasons at WU with 129 career receptions for 2,445 yards. He averaged 19.0 yards per reception during his career.

He tied a WU record with four pass receptions in a single game on two occasions. He hauled in four touchdown passes for the first time on Nov. 7, 2009 against the University of Puget Sound and matched his performance on Nov. 6, 2010 versus Lewis & Clark College.

Schoettgen hauled in a career-high nine passes against Puget Sound in 2009 and gained a career-high 222 receiving yards against Hardin-Simmons University on Sept. 11, 2010.

Kenny Miller Kenny Miller (Jr., C) moved into the starting lineup this season. He started all 10 games and was a key contributor as the Bearcats averaged 416.6 total yards per game. His blocking helped Willamette rush for 2,363 yards on 463 carries, an average of 5.1 yards per rush and 263.3 yards per game. Miller’s pass protecting efforts helped the Bearcats complete 59.1% of their passes for an average of 180.3 yards per contest.

Miller played in two games as a freshman in 2008 and saw action in eight games in 2009. During his first three seasons with the Bearcats, he has played in a total of 20 games.

Walter Robinson II Walter Robinson II (Sr., DE) ranked second on the team this season with 59 total tackles. He recorded 23 solo tackles and achieved 36 assists. He led WU with 13.0 tackles for losses (74 yards), including a team-high 5.0 quarterback sacks for 34 yards lost. He registered six quarterback hurries. Robinson was named Second Team All-NWC in 2009.

During his career, Robinson accumulated 152 total tackles, as he earned 77 unassisted tackles and 75 assists. He made 26.5 tackles behind the line of scrimmage for 119 yards in losses and recorded 11.0 quarterback sacks. He started all 20 games during his junior and senior seasons.

Juan AlvaradoJuan Alvarado (Jr., DT) provided Willamette with 17 tackles in 2010. He achieved 4.5 tackles for losses and 2.5 sacks. He also forced a fumble, recovered a fumble and broke up one pass. He helped WU limit opponents to just 94.7 rushing yards per game and only 3.0 rushing yards per carry.

Alvarado was a factor on many plays, even when he didn’t make a tackle. His successful efforts often forced opposing players into the path of Willamette’s linebackers and defensive ends. After battling injuries in 2008 and 2009, he started all 10 games this season.

Ralph PinedaRalph Pineda (Sr., ILB) topped the Bearcat defensive chart with 84 total tackles in 2010. He earned 34 unassisted tackles and contributed 50 assists. He tied for second on the team with three interceptions. He also forced a fumble and recovered a fumble, while making 7.0 tackles for losses and 2.0 sacks.

In two seasons after transferring from San Jose State University, Pineda registered 165 total tackles for the Bearcats. He repeated as a First Team All-NWC selection after being chosen NWC Defensive Player of the Year as a junior. In addition, he was named First Team All-West Region and Third Team All-America by D3football.com in 2009.

Harmon BrunoHarmon Bruno (Jr., OLB) achieved 51 tackles this season to rank third on the team. He made 25 solo tackles and 26 assists. He supplied 4.5 tackles for losses, while recording three pass break-ups and two quarterback hurries. He always seemed to be near the ball.

During his first three years at WU, Bruno has contributed 155 tackles, with 76 unassisted stops and 79 assists. He has compiled 19.0 tackles for losses resulting in 106 yards lost by opponents. He blocked two kicks in 2008. He earned 66 tackles and intercepted two passes in 2009, when he was chosen Honorable Mention All-NWC.

Arlin Taylor Arlin Taylor (Sr., S) led the Bearcats with four interceptions this season. He also registered four pass break-ups, and scored a touchdown on a 19-yard fumble return against Southern Oregon University. He finished the year with 43 tackles, including 21 unassisted tackles. It was the third consecutive season that he was chosen First Team All-NWC.

As a four-year player for the Bearcats, Taylor attained 171 total tackles. He produced 90 solo stops and supplied 81 assists. His career totals also include seven interceptions, six fumble recoveries and 14 pass break-ups. He scored one touchdown on an interception and recorded two touchdowns on fumble returns.

Second Team All-NWC

Luis Guerra Luis Guerra (Sr., OT/OG) earned Second Team All-NWC honors for the second year in a row, after receiving Honorable Mention All-NWC recognition in 2008. This season, His blocking helped the Bearcats gain 4,166 total yards, including 2,363 yards on the ground. He contributed to Willamette achieving 197 first downs and a 42.6% conversion rate on third down (49 of 115), plus a 41.2% success rate on fourth down (7 of 17).

Guerra played in 41 games in his career and was a starter for the Bearcats in all 32 games during his final three seasons at Willamette. He saw action in 9 of 10 games as a freshman in 2007.

Dennis Plzak Dennis Plzak (Sr., OG) played in 31 games during his Willamette career, including all 20 games the past two seasons. He started all 10 games in 2009 and was a starter for all 10 games in 2010.

Blocking by Plzak during the 2010 season contributed to Willamette leading the NWC in rushing offense (236.3 yards per game) and passing efficiency (164.2 rating), while ranking second in the conference in scoring offense (37.1 avg.), total offense (416.6 yards per game) and first downs (197).

In 2009, he helped WU average 6.1 yards per play. In 2008, he provided depth as the Bearcats won an undefeated NWC championship (6-0), went 11-1 overall and earned a bid to the NCAA Division III Playoffs.

Terrell Malley Terrell Malley (So., TB) rushed for 628 yards on 77 carries this season (8.2 avg.) despite playing in just eight games and missing the final two games due to injury. He scored seven rushing touchdowns, including plays covering 77, 50 and 49 yards. He ranked fourth in the NWC with 78.5 rushing yards per game.

During his first two seasons at WU, he has carried the ball 125 times for 898 yards and 10 touchdowns. He owns a career average of 7.2 yards per carry. He achieved his first 100-yard rushing game for the Bearcats by rushing for 170 yards against Southern Oregon on Sept. 18, 2010. He gained 113 rushing yards against Whitworth University on Oct. 30, 2010.

Ryan BourkeRyan Bourke (Jr., DE) started all 10 games in 2010 and made important contributions to the Willamette defense. He earned 21 total tackles, with 2.0 tackles for losses and 1.5 quarterback sacks. He also registered two quarterback hurries and one pass break-up. He put significant pressure on the opposing backfield.

As a freshman, Bourke earned playing time in nine games and made 10 tackles. He also saw action in nine games in 2009 and supplied the Bearcats with 10 additional tackles. In 29 career games played, he has achieved 41 tackles with 8.5 tackles for losses and 4.5 quarterback sacks.

Cody Pastorino Cody Pastorino (So., S) led Willamette by blocking three punts this season. Two of the blocks resulted in Willamette touchdowns on the same play, while one set up a WU touchdown two plays later. Pastorino also recorded 33 total tackles while making 21 unassisted stops. He intercepted three passes and broke up an additional four passes. He helped the Bearcats limit opponents to just 94.7 rushing yards per game.

Pastorino has played in 18 games in two seasons at WU. He has provided the Bearcats with a total of 49 tackles, including 32 unassisted tackles. He has grabbed four career interceptions

Honorable Mention All-NWC

Jamiere Abney Jamiere Abney (Jr., TB) rushed 46 times for 205 yards (4.5 avg.) this season and also provided solid blocking for WU’s other offensive backs. He scored three rushing touchdowns. He played in nine games, but missed one game due to injury.

In his Willamette career, Abney has carried the ball 110 times for 637 yards (5.8 avg.) and 13 touchdowns. He has seen action in 27 games. He was chosen Second Team All-NWC in 2009.

Aaron Cavette Aaron Cavette (Sr., FB) played in nine games with eight starts this season. His powerful blocking helped the Bearcats average 236.3 rushing yards per game and a solid 5.1 yards per carry. Cavette also ran with the ball 24 times for 113 yards (4.7 avg.) and one touchdown.

He contributed in 25 games during his career, including 19 games played the past two seasons. He helped WU gain 4,028 total yards in 2009 and 4,166 yards in 2010.

Will Pohl Will Pohl (Sr., TE) was a blocker and a pass receiver for the Bearcats this season. His blocking played a part in the Bearcats averaging 416.6 yards per game and 6.5 yards per play. He also caught six passes for 76 yards.

He played in a total of 31 games with 21 starts over the past four seasons. He started all 10 games as a junior and all 10 games this season. He saw action in nine games in 2008, when the Bearcats won the NWC title and reached the second round of the NCAA Division III Playoffs.

Dominic David Dominic David (So., S) joined the Bearcats this season after playing one year at Portland State University. This season, he registered 29 total tackles with 14 solo stops and 15 assists. He played in each of the first nine games before an injury forced him to miss the season finale against Pacific Lutheran University.

David intercepted a pass against Whitworth University that led to a touchdown four plays later. He also forced a fumble by Southern Oregon that was returned for a touchdown by the Bearcats. He broke up six passes during the season.

Scott Schoettgen was named First Team All-NWC after catching 49 catches for 960 yards and 13 TDs.

Scott Schoettgen was named First Team All-NWC after catching 49 catches for 960 yards and 13 TDs.