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Former Hawk breaks numerous GNAC records
JaQuan Gardner

Central Valley High School grad Ja'Quan Gardner broke numerous Great Northwest Athletic Conference records during the Humboldt State football team's thrilling 52-49 Homecoming victory against visiting Azusa Pacific this past weekend.

"My coaches and teammates all contributed to what happened Saturday night," Gardner said. "Now, it's time to get back to work."

Ja'Quan became the GNAC's all-time leader in career touchdowns (67), scoring (402 points), all-purpose yards (6,366) and rushing yards (5,124).

He also tied the GNAC record for career rushing TDS (63).

Former Azusa Pacific/current Pittsburgh Steelers running back Terrell Watson held all of the previous conference records broken by Gardner.

Ja'Quan also set new GNAC single-game marks with six touchdowns, 36 points and 446 all-purpose yards.

"He's amazing to watch," said Humboldt State freshman tight end/fellow Central Valley grad Gabriel Quezada.

Gardner rushed for 293 yards and five touchdowns on 31 carries in leading the Lumberjacks past the Cougars in front of 5,628 fans on Saturday in Arcata.

He also returned a kickoff 92 yards for a TD.

The Lumberjacks improved to 5-1 overall and 4-2 in the GNAC standings.

"It was a great night," Gardner said. "We almost had a sellout crowd. We wanted to put on a show. We did that."

Ja'Quan was named GNAC Offensive Player of the Week for a conference-record ninth time on Monday.

Gardner tied another one of Watson's marks.

"It's a tremendous honor for myself, teammates and coaches," said Ja'Quan, who was quick to give credit to his supporting cast.

Gardner shattered 10 team records during his first three years at Humboldt State, including rushing yardage in a career (4,121), rushing yardage in a season (2,266), rushing yardage in a single game (313), touchdowns scored in a career (53), touchdowns scored in a season (25), touchdowns scored in a game (5), points scored in a career (318), points scored in a season (150), points scored in a game (30) and longest rushing play (87).

"I'm more focused on our team succeeding rather than thinking about my individual accomplishments," he said.

"I'm really glad Ja'Quan Gardner is on our side," Lumberjacks head coach Rob Smith said while being interviewed by the Times Standard. "He's a special, special player."