Stapleton, Cato Named GSC Players of the Week

By  //  October 1, 2014

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HONORED AFTER STANDOUT PERFORMANCE

ABOVE VIDEO: Florida Tech head coach Steve Englehart celebrates the Panthers’ historic win over the 12h ranked Tarleton State Texans last Saturday at AT&T Stadium – home of the Dallas Cowboys, in Arlington, Texas. It is the first time in Florida Tech’s first two years of football competition that the Panthers came out victorious against a ranked opponent.

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Standout performances in Florida Tech’s narrow loss to Bethune-Cookman on Saturday have earned linebacker Chris Stapleton and quarterback Mark Cato Gulf South Conference Player of the Week honors.

Mark Cato and Chris Stapleton were announced Monday by the conference office as GSC Players of the Week. (Florida Tech image)

Mark Cato and Chris Stapleton were announced Monday by the conference office as GSC Players of the Week. (Florida Tech image)

Stapleton was named the conference’s defensive player of the week, while Cato was awarded the freshman of the week award for the fourth-consecutive week.

Stapleton was a dominant factor for the Panthers’ defense on Saturday, totaling five tackles, three of which were solo.

The Navarre, Florida native’s impact was most felt in the Wildcat backfield as Stapleton recorded two sacks of Bethune-Cookman quarterback Quentin Williams.

At AT&T stadium, Panther QB Mark Cato accounted for almost 400 yards of total offense for Florida Tech last week against Tarletan state– 354 yards in the air and 44 yards on the ground. (Matt O'Hern image)

At AT&T stadium, Panther QB Mark Cato accounted for almost 400 yards of total offense for Florida Tech last week against Tarletan state– 354 yards in the air and 44 yards on the ground. (Matt O’Hern image)

For the third consecutive week Cato surpassed his career-best mark in passing yards. The redshirt freshman quarterback finished the game with 310 yards and four scores on 20 of 36 passing, including a 79-yard touchdown strike to Xavier Milton.

The Alachua, Florida native also showed late-game heroics for the second-straight week as he connected with Tyler Bass for a touchdown with 19 seconds remaining in the game to give the Panthers a chance to take the lead.

North Alabama’s Taylor Pontius and Lamonte Thompson were the other two players to receive conference laurels.

Pontius earned the special teams award, while Thompson was named the offensive player of the week.

Florida Tech resumes action this Thursday as the Panthers open their conference schedule against #11 Delta State in a WHITE OUT Game at Pirate Stadium. Kickoff in Melbourne is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET.

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The Panthers’ matchup with the Statesmen is the GSC-TV Live Game of the Week, presented by Florida’s Space Coast. The game will be streamed on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app.

A live radio broadcast of Thursday’s contest will be available on the new Official Radio Partner of the Panthers, WFIT 89.5 FM, with Jerry Durney and Paul Van Scott calling the game. The broadcast can also be heard online by clicking on the ‘Listen Live’ button in the top left hand corner at WFIT.org or through the free TuneIn Radio app.

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