Washington State safety Shalom Luani's two picks, game-high 11 tackles earn Pac-12 honor

WASHINGTON STATE safety Shalom Luani has been named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in the Homecoming win over Oregon State, the conference announced Monday.

Luani, a third-year junior safety from Masausi, American Samoa -- and a first-year Cougar -- recorded a game-high 11 tackles (eight solo)  with two interceptions and a pass breakup in Washington State’s 52-31 win over Oregon State on Saturday.

Luani is tied with linebacker Jeremiah Allison for second on the team in tackles this season with 46 behind (LB Peyton Pelluer has 54 stops).

Luani also has two forced fumbles, three pass break ups and three picks on the season. 

It's the first defensive player of the week honor for the Cougars since cornerback Damante Horton in 2013, after Horton alsoi picked off two passes, returning one for a touchdown in the win over USC.

Luani joins Luke Falk as Cougar conference players of the week this season, with the WSU QB taking home the offensive honor for his performance in Week 2 against Rutgers.

Luani against Oregon State took his first interception late in the fourth quarter back to thouse 84 yards, WSU's only points of the second half and the first pick-six for WSU since 2013.

Luani then added a second interception on Oregon State’s next possession.

WSU's Jason Gesser said on Cougar Calls with Bill Moos that Luani deftly baited the OSU quarterback on both picks.

Luani on Saturday became the fourth Pac-12 player this season with two interceptions in a game. His 84-yard pick was the longest interception for a touchdown in the Pac-12 this season.

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