Northwestern State’s Pedraza earns LSWA Defensive Player of the Week honors

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Northwestern State linebacker Jared Pedraza (right) chases after Houston Baptist quarterback Orion Olivas in the Demons’ 21-17 win Saturday (Photo: Chris Reich/NSU Photographic Services).

NATCHITOCHES – Freshman linebacker Jared Pedraza has shown a knack for recovering fumbles.

The Franklin, Texas, product showed he can snag something else Monday.

Pedraza enjoyed a stat sheet-stuffing performance in the Demons’ 21-17 win at Houston Baptist on Oct. 9, leading to him earning Louisiana Sports Writers Association Defensive Player of the Week honors Monday afternoon. A statewide panel of sports writers votes on the awards based on nominations by state sports information directors.

A 6-foot-1, 225-pounder, Pedraza had three tackles, including 1.5 for loss, 0.5 sacks and a career-high four quarterback hurries in NSU’s first victory of the season. In the Demons’ previous two games, Pedraza recovered three total fumbles, giving him the FCS national lead. His half sack came on Houston Baptist’s final drive of the game, putting the Huskies in a 2nd-and-20 situation with less than a minute to play.

Pedraza’s honor is the first for a Demon this season.

Northwestern State resumes play Saturday against Southland Conference rival McNeese. Kickoff is set for 3 p.m. in Turpin Stadium.

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