For the first time this season, a Linfield football player has been honored as the Northwest Conference Student-Athlete of the Week, with Josh Kay (Sr., Salem, Ore.) picking up the award in the special teams category. The honor was announced Tuesday by the league’s sports information directors.
Kay was perfect on a day when the 'Cats needed him to be, converting four field goals – including the game-winning kick – and all three PAT to help fifth-ranked Linfield edge 10th-ranked Cal Lutheran 33-30 in a key matchup between West Coast powers. He scored the game's final six points, including the game-winning field goal with just five seconds remaining. In all, Kay hit from 45, 35, 41 and 39 yards as Linfield snapped CLU's 14-game home winning streak and improved to 3-0 on the year.
Through three games, Kay has split the uprights four of seven tries and has successfully converted 14 of 14 extra-point attempts. The 45-yarder he made against the Kingsmen was a season long. Kay also serves as Linfield’s kickoff specialist, averaging 63.5 yards per kickoff.
Kay’s career totals stand at 24 of 33 for field goal attempts and 76-for-80 on PAT kicks. His longest field goal to date came against Puget Sound in 2011, when he booted a 49-yard kick, an effort that was just four yards shy of Linfield’s all-time record.
The 2011 Fred Mitchell Award finalist, saluting the nation’s top placekicker across five divisions of college football, was a second team all-West Region selection and a first team NWC honoree last season. Kay was also twice chosen as the NWC Special Teams Student-Athlete of the Week.
Linfield, which moved up to No. 3 in the latest d3football.com national poll, has averaged 37.3 points per game in three nonconference wins over Menlo, Hardin-Simmons and Cal Lutheran. The 'Cats were also tabbed as the nation's fourth-best team in the first rankings list compiled this year by the American Football Coaches Association, released Monday.
UP NEXT: Linfield has a bye week before traveling to Tacoma, Wash., Sept. 29 for its Northwest Conference opener against Pacific Lutheran. Kickoff that day is set for 12:30 p.m.
Hits all four field goals against CLU
Director of Sports Information
McMinnville, OR 97128