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Sacramento Native Manase Hopoi Returns In Trade

May 13, 2009 - ECHL (ECHL) - Stockton Thunder News Release


STOCKTON, Calif. - The Stockton Lightning of the arenafootball2 League announced today defensive lineman Manase Hopoi (Mah-NAS-ee, Ho-POY) has been acquired from the Central Valley Coyotes in exchange for defensive back Ruschard Dodd-Masters.

Hopoi, a Sacramento, Calif. native, was originally assigned to the Coyotes on Nov. 21, 2008 but has not appeared in a game this year with Central Valley. The 25-year old appeared in nine games for the Lightning last season and led the team with two safeties while ranking third with 5.0 sacks and 6.0 tackles-for-loss. Hopoi registered 14.5 total tackles for Stockton after starting the year on the practice squad of the New Orleans VooDoo of the Arena Football League.

In his first af2 season, Hopoi amassed 23 tackles for the Lightning in 2007 and ranked fourth on the Lightning with 3.0 sacks and was tied for third on the team with 5.0 tackles-for-loss.

The 6-foot-3, 285-pound lineman ranked among the top categories in a handful of defensive records at University of Washington (NCAA) during his five-year (2001-05) college career. Hopoi ranks third in Huskies all-time history with 49 tackles and fourth in program history with 25 sacks (since 1982). A second-team All-Pac-10 selection as a 2004 junior, Hopoi had 54 tackles and led the Pac-10 with 22 tackles-for-loss, one shy of Washington's single-season record.

Hopoi tied for the team lead with five sacks and ranked second with 9.5 tackles for loss as a 2005 senior and spent the 2006 National Football League training camp period with the Minnesota Vikings.

At Valley High (Calif.) in Sacramento, Hopoi tallied 470 tackles, 37 sacks and 47 tackles-for-loss in his career, including an incredible 16 tackles and four sacks in a win over Woodland in 1999. The 6-foot-3, 285-pound defensive lineman earned first-team honors in the Long Beach Press Telegram's "Best of the West" poll, was a PrepStar All-American and first-team all-CIF selection. He was awarded Sacramento Bee All-City first team honors in 2000 and also was a two-time Delta League Defensive MVP.

Dodd-Masters ranked second on the Lightning with 24.5 tackles in six games, registering four pass breakups. On the offensive side of the ball, Dodd-Masters has 32 kick returns this season for 609 return yards.

In addition, the following transaction was also announced:

* OL/DL Jake Forshey traded to Tri-Cities in exchange for past considerations

The Lightning return home for their next game for Week 8 action on Saturday, May 16, facing the Rio Grande Valley Dorados at 7:00 p.m. at Stockton Arena, the first ever meeting between both teams. The game can be heard and viewed online, free-of-charge, courtesy of Nifty Online TV at www.niftytv.com/af2.

Season, individual and group tickets for the 2009 Lightning regular season are on sale now. For more information on season tickets, merchandise, or other information, please call the Lightning at (209) 373-1500 or visit www.stocktonlightning.com.

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