EIU's Church Named Newcomer of the WeekPosted:
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (via EIU athletics) – Eastern Illinois running back Devin Church was named the Ohio Valley Conference Newcomer of the Week after helping the Panthers improve to 3-0 in OVC play with a 25-22 overtime win at Tennessee State on Saturday night. EIU returns to action this Saturday at 1 p.m. hosting Tennessee Tech for the 100th homecoming celebration. Tickets are available by calling 217-581-2106 or online at www.eiupanthertickets.com
Church rushed for 125 yards on 17 carries as the transfer from Illinois averaged 7.4 yards per carry on the evening. Church scored twice in the game opening the first quarter with an 8-yard score. He came back in the fourth quarter and scored from 25-yards out which gave EIU a 22-19 lead in regulation. It marked the third straight week that Church has scored two touchdowns in a game. He ended the week ranked 10th nationally in all-purpose yards at 161 per game. The junior is third in the league in rushing at 80.3 yards per game while leading the league in touchdowns scored with eight (six rushing and two receiving).
Eli Jenkins of Jacksonville State was named the OVC Offensive Player of the week while Eastern Kentucky had a pair of players earn Defensive Player and Specialist of the Week. Noah Spence won the defensive award while Keith Wrzuszczak won the special teams award. JSU, EKU and EIU all head into next week’s games with a 3-0 OVC mark.