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Morgan, Forgione and Rachal take Week 17 honors

July 27, 2004 - arenafootball2 (af2) News Release

CHICAGO - Central Valley offensive specialist KENYATTE MORGAN, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton wide receiver/linebacker ROCCO FORGIONE and Laredo defensive specialist TRACO RACHAL have been named the Baby Ruth Real Deal Offensive Player, U.S. Army Ironman and ADT Defensive Player of the Week, respectively, for Week 17 of the 2004 season.


Morgan (5-10, 180, Montana State), in his second season, helped the Central Valley Coyotes play the role of spoilers as they defeated the Hawaiian Islanders 64-63, eliminating the Islanders from contention for the West Division crown. Morgan caught seven passes for 117 yards and three touchdowns. He also returned six kickoffs for 172 yards, including a 56-yard return for a touchdown. He was influential in leading the Coyotes back from an early 14-0 deficit as he scored the first three touchdowns for the Coyotes to tie the game up at 21-21. This upcoming week could be big for Morgan. He needs 166 yards against San Diego to break the record for all-purpose yards in a season. This is Morgan's first weekly accolade. He is the second Central Valley player to win a weekly award this season. Ricky Leung Wai won ADT Defensive Player of the Week honors in Week 7.


Forgione (6-2, 210, Bloomsburg), in his second season, spurred the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Pioneers to a victory over the Cape Fear Wildcats to take the Northeast Division Championship and clinch a First Round bye in the ArenaCup Playoffs. On defense Forgione recorded 2.5 tackles (1UA 3A) and two interceptions, which he returned 26 yards. Forgione made his impact on offense in the third quarter, when he scored the only two touchdowns of the quarter on touchdown receptions of 25 and two yards. His two scores turned a seven-point halftime deficit for the Pioneers into a seven-point lead to start the fourth quarter. Forgione finished the night with three receptions for 36 yards. This is the Pioneers' third weekly award winner this season. Leroy McFadden won this same award in Week 3. Jamie Hattley won ADT Defensive Player of the Week honors in Week 12. This is the first time Forgione has won a weekly award.


Rachal (6-1, 200, Texas A&M-Commerce), in his second season, had an impressive performance in spite of Laredo's 49-34 loss to Wichita. On the night Rachal finished with two interceptions that he returned for 31 yards, an additional pass defended, a blocked field goal and 2.0 tackles (1UA 2A). His first interception came in the first quarter to set up a Laredo touchdown to tie the game at seven. His second interception came in the second quarter after Laredo just tied the game at 21-21. On the last play of the first half Rachal broke through the line and blocked a Wichita 25-yard field goal attempt. If it was good it would have put the Stealth up by three points going into the half, but Rachal's block kept the game tied after one half. While Laredo eventually fell to the Stealth, Rachal's play kept the Law in a game in which they were playing with two quarterbacks taking their first af2 snaps. This is not only Rachal's first-ever weekly award, it is the Laredo Law's first weekly award in team history.

Baby Ruth Real Deal Offensive Player of the Week candidates included: Albany's Tony Locke and D Bryant, Tulsa's Robert Reed and Bob Bees, Arkansas' Kevin Williams, Peoria's Lawrence Matthews, Central Valley's Frank Borba, Memphis' Michael Wall, Cape Fear's Matt Burstein, Wichita's Brian Livingston, Laredo's B'Jay Jones, Green Bay's DeRonn Finley, Bakersfield's Eric Mahanke, Tennessee Valley's Josh Kellett, Bossier-Shreveport's Reggie Perkins, Florida's Ken Mastrole, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Leroy McFadden.

U.S. Army Ironman of the Week candidates included: Manchester's Reggie Robinson, Tulsa's Anton Ceasar, Arkansas' Prince Williams, Peoria's Milton Bowen, Central Valley's Weston Borba, Memphis' Ryan Karr, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Leroy McFadden, Wichita's Brian Livingston, Louisville's Tony Stallings, Bakersfield's Steve Wofford, Albany's Cy Butler, Columbus' Adrian Cockfield, Green Bay's Torrey Day, Bossier-Shreveport's Reggie Perkins.

ADT Defensive Player of the Week candidates included: Albany's Travis Coleman and Rob Green, Tulsa's Jay Brooks, Rio Grande Valley's Eddie Moten, Peoria's Frank West, Hawaii's Joshua Robinson, Memphis' Joseph Crear, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's Rocco Forgione, Wichita's Norman Mason, Louisville's Andrew Tippins, Bakersfield's Ahmad Bhatti, Hawaii's Kealii Aguiar, San Diego's Ryan Smith, Florida's Quincy Sorrell, Peoria's Chris Robinson, Tennessee Valley's Erin Damond, Arkansas' Reggie Cooley.

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