Wildcats' Lopez Joins Stray On Cactus Bowl Roster - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

CWU Football

Wildcats' Lopez Joins Stray On Cactus Bowl Roster

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KINGSVILLE, Texas -- (Dec. 7) Central Washington University running back Johnny Lopez will join teammate Bret Stray representing the Wildcats in the 2008 Valero Cactus Bowl game on Jan. 11 in Kingsville, Texas.

Lopez, a 5-8, 188-pound tailback, was also selected to the West team roster for the all-star game that pits the top seniors from Division II football against each other annually at Javelina Stadium. He is one of three running backs on the West roster, joining South Dakota's Amos Allen and Willie Hopson of Ouachita Baptist (Ark.).

During his senior campaign with CWU, Lopez became the 10th player in school history with 1,000 or more rushing yards in a single season, finishing with 1,230 yards and 13 touchdowns. Included among his yardage total were six 100-yard performances, including three games of 150 or more yards.

With Lopez's addition to the West roster, nearly one-third (13) of the West team's 41 players represent the North Central Conference.

A total of 10 Central Washington University student-athletes have been selected to compete in the Cactus Bowl in the past six years. Lopez and Stray join the following former Wildcats: wide receiver Brian Potucek (2006), running back Emilio Iniguez and defensive lineman Dustin Hawkins (2005), punter Joe Smith and wide receivers Moses Lewis and Jake Roberts (2004), defensive lineman Lance Gibson and defensive back Jeremy Jacobs (2003).

The Cactus Bowl originated as the Snow Bowl in Fargo, N.D., in 1994 before moving to Kingsville in 2001. According to the Cactus Bowl web site (cactusbowl.org), the game will be played in an East/West format, with the teams are comprised entirely of the 'best of the best' NCAA Division II college seniors. The Cactus Bowl Committee, comprised completely of volunteers, is responsible for all aspects of organization for the contest and net profits from the Cactus Bowl are donated to Shriners Hospitals for Children.