Youngstown State senior quarterback Kurt Hess (offense) and junior strong safety Donald D'Alesio (defense) were named Missouri Valley Football Conference Players of the Week for their performances in the Penguins' 28-27 come-from-behind win at Southern Illinois last night.
Hess engineered the programs best fourth-quarter comeback since 2000 in a 28-27 win at Southern Illinois on Saturday night. The Penguins trailed 27-14 in the fourth, but Hess threw two touchdown passes in the final 10 minutes. Trailing 27-14 he found Nate Adams for a 14-yard score with 9:30 remaining to get YSU within 27-21. With 1:50 remaining he found Carson Sharbaugh on fourth down from the one-yard line for the game winner.
He also ran for a key first down on the final drive with the Guins facing a fourth-and-6 from the SIU 27-yard line. He completed 25-of-37 passes for 258 yards and four touchdowns. He had five carries for 27 yards.
D'Alesio had a career-high 14 tackles in the Penguins' come-from-behind win at Southern Illinois. He recovered a fumble in the final minute that ended any SIU comeback bid. His previous high was 11 at Missouri State as a freshman in 2010. He had nine solo tackles, also a career-high.
On defense, the Guins righted the ship in the second half. YSU allowed 27 points and 332 total yards in the first half. In the second, SIU scored no points and had 120 yards of offense.
The Penguins (4-1 overall and 1-0 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference) are back on the road this Saturday when they visit Indiana State. Kickoff in Terre Haute, Ind., is set for 3 p.m.