GATEWAY CONFERENCE YSU's Mays, Aroche honored

The Penguins play host to Illinois State in Saturday's Homecoming game.
YOUNGSTOWN -- The 2001 football season is at the halfway point and Youngstown State has earned more than its share of weekly honors in the Gateway Football Conference.
Following Saturday's 41-20 victory over Southwest Missouri State two Penguins, for the second time this year, were named conference players of the week.
P.J. Mays, junior tailback from East High, was named offensive player of the week, and Antulio Aroche, senior defensive back from Los Angeles, earned defensive honors.
Both were also named the Penguins' players of the week.
Mays rushed for 218 yards and scored three touchdowns against Southwest Missouri State.
Mays, who has seven touchdowns the last two games and 13 for the season, leads the conference with 870 yards rushing and is fifth in I-AA. Mays also leads the Gateway in scoring and is fourth in I-AA.
"I haven't been following my guards through the hole in the last few games and I did that this week and it made a big difference," Mays said.
Defensive standout: Aroche transferred to YSU in 1999 from Santa Monica Junior College and was redshirted.
Last season he played mostly special teams, but moved into a starting role this year. Saturday, he finished with a team-high 11 tackles, including one for a loss, and he forced one fumble and recovered another. He also came up with the team's Derrick Pixley Hit of the Week.
The Penguins' special teams player of the game award went to junior Jerald Burley.
Burley (5-foot-10, 168 pounds), a wide receiver from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., had one punt return for 25 yards and averaged 20 yards on two kickoff returns.
He also made a touchdown-saving tackle on kickoff coverage.
Burley also had two carries for 31 yards, including a 24-yard touchdown run in the first period.
Former Cardinal Mooney High standout Andy DeNiro, a 6-3, 293 offensive guard, was the Jim Zdelar Offensive Lineman of the week. The Penguins rushed for 393 yards and scored six touchdowns.
The Jermaine Hopkins defensive lineman award went to senior outside linebacker Bob Sivik, who had a tackle for loss, a fumble recovery and a pass deflection.
The Haines Family Player of the game, selected by the YSU broadcasters, was Mays.