Four Spartans named NACC Players of the Week

Top left to bottom right: Nick Cole, Brandon Haase, Ryan Mizgate and Emily Paull

The Aurora University Spartans are having a great start to the 2013-2014 season. AU had four student-athletes named Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference (NACC) Student-Athletes of the Week for their performances on the field and course.

Women’s cross country runner Emily Paull (Somonauk, Ill./Somonauk H.S.) was named the NACC Women’s Cross Country Student-Athlete of the Week. The AU junior finished fourth as the Spartans finished second in the 2013 AU Spartan Classic. Paull’s time of 22:44.3 is the second best time in AU history in the 6K meet.

AU men’s cross country runner Nick Cole (Rantoul, Ill./Rantoul H.S.) was recognized as the NACC Men’s Cross Country Student-Athlete of the Week. The Spartan junior set a new personal best time of 26 minutes, 20.9 seconds at the AU Spartan Classic on Friday, September 6. He placed 22nd in a field of nearly 200 runners at the 8K event.

Senior punter Ryan Mizgate (Lansing, Ill./Thornton Fractional South H.S.) was named the NACC Football Special Teams Student-Athlete of the Week, while his teammate, senior linebacker Brandon Haase (Minooka, Ill./Minooka H.S.), was recognized as the NACC Football Defensive Student-Athlete of the Week for the opening week of 2013.

Mizgate booted six punts for 299 yards, an average of 49.8 yards per punt. The senior’s long of 80 yards set an AU and Vago Field single-game record. He also had four of his punts downed inside the 20-yard line.

Haase led the AU defense and was the leading tackler in the Spartan’s 48-21 loss to Illinois Wesleyan University. The senior linebacker forced a fumble and tallied 15 totals tackles, which included 11 solo stops and one tackle-for-loss.