Stamer, Gaines to play in Cactus Bowl

Stamer, Gaines to play in Cactus Bowl Two seniors on the South Dakota football team have been named to the West squad and will play in the Cactus Bowl on Jan. 12 at Javelina Stadium in Kingsville, TX.

The Cactus Bowl (formerly the Snow Bowl), being held for the eighth time, is the NCAA Division II all-star game. South Dakota linebacker Josh Stamer and cornerback Kaseem Gaines were named to the West All-Star team.

The game pits the top of NCAA Division II players in the nation. Stamer and Gaines will be in Kingsville for a week-long schedule of events, culminating with the game, which will be televised live on FOX Sports Southwest and by the FOX Sports Network.

Stamer, a 6'2", 230-pound linebacker from Sutherland, IA, had a spectacular senior season in helping to lead his team to an 8-3 record in a turnaround season for the Coyotes. Stamer, who played the "Sam" linebacker position, led the North Central Conference in tackles for loss with 21 for -56 yards.

He was fourth in the conference in quarterback sacks with six for -42 yards in opponent losses. In addition, he had five defensive pass breakups, a forced fumble and fumble recovery.

On four occasions Stamer recorded three tackles for a loss in a game this season. He recorded at least one tackle for loss in all 11 Coyote games and had a sack in each of the Coyotes' first four games.

A senior co-captain, Stamer was named for the second consecutive year to the NCC all-Academic Team and was a Daktronics Midwest Region Second Team pick at linebacker. In his career, Stamer has 90 unassisted tackles and 152 total tackles. He has recorded 36 tackles for a loss of 137 yards and 15.5 quarterback sacks, three fumble recoveries, three interceptions and a defensive touchdown. He will graduate in May 2001 with a 3.8 grade point average and a master's degree in accounting.

Gaines, a 6'1", 210-pound cornerback from Trenton, NJ, had three interceptions for 71 yards in returns including a 29 yard interception return for a score. He also had a score on special teams with a recovered blocked punt in the end zone. Gaines had 25 tackles, including 23 unassisted stops and two tackles for loss (-4), as well as five pass breakups.

During his two years at South Dakota, Gaines has 46 unassisted tackles and 55 total tackles in his career at South Dakota. In addition, he has six tackles for loss (-23), two fumble recoveries, five interceptions and four blocked kicks. He has 20 pass breakups. Gaines has scored four defensive/special teams touchdowns.

Rick Dykes, former offensive coordinator at Texas Tech, will be the head coach of the West team.

The Shriners Hospital for Children has been named as the designated charity for the Cactus Bowl. Proceeds from the game will go to the Shriners 22 children's hospitals throughout the US, Mexico and Canada.

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