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Nevada’s Dom Peterson, Julian Diaz earn Mountain West Player of the Week honors

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 09 Nevada at San Diego State Photo by Justin Fine/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Nevada Dom Peterson and Julian Diaz both made his presences known in Nevada’s 26-21 victory over San Diego State Saturday.

Peterson, defensive lineman, was awarded the Mountain West’s Defensive Player of the Week Monday. Julian Diaz earned the conference’s Special Teams Player of the Week honor.

Peterson, a preseason All-Mountain West first team honoree, was crucial in Nevada’s 26-21 victory over San Diego State on Saturday, recording four total tackles, three tackles-for-loss and two sacks. All three tackles-for-loss came on third down in the second half.

He helped the Aztec rushing attack to 109 yards on 35 carries, well below their season average (they averaged 280.3 per game entering Saturday). The Wolf Pack defense allowed just 41 second-half yards (on 32 plays) and three first downs, coming after surrendering 252 total yards and 13 first downs in the first half.

Peterson has four sacks and 6.5 tackles-for-loss on the season — both team highs. Peterson has 16.0 career sacks, 0.5 shy of entering Nevada’s top-10 for career sacks. The junior has 32.0 tackles-for-loss, two shy of entering the Wolf Pack’s career top-10 in that department.

Diaz totaled five punts on Saturday, all eclipsing 50-plus yards — including a game-high 63-yard boot. He averaged 55.2 yards on his punts.

Diaz, though he was on special teams, was an integral part to Nevada’s defensive success Saturday. The lefty continuously put the Aztecs in difficult field position, pinning them inside the 20-yard-line four times.

In three games this season (missing two due to illness), Diaz has averaged 52.7 yards on his punt (which would lead the conference qualifiers by over eight yards on average). Of his 11 punts, eight have traveled 50-plus yards and seven have landed inside the 20.