POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Oct 24, 2010
LOGAN, Utah » His right ankle throbbed and he walked out of the locker room gingerly on it yesterday, an injury made more painful by the cold 40-degree weather that gave him a noticeable limp.
But nothing could wipe the smile off linebacker Corey Paredes' face after the University of Hawaii's 45-7 dissection of Utah State and his role in it.
Paredes had a game-high 10 tackles, all in keeping with his status as one of the most prolific tacklers in the nation (he was seventh last week, averaging 11.7 per game). But the object — make that plural — of his satisfaction was the first two pass interceptions of his UH career.
After 34 games as a Warrior — 11 of them starts — Paredes finally got his "picks," as he called them, after how many close calls.
"Finally getting one, then two, was really satisfying," said the junior from Castle High.
His first interception of a Diondre Borel pass came in the second quarter and helped set up the third of four Alex Green touchdown runs, this one a 36-yarder for a 28-7 lead.
Four passes later, the 5-foot-11 Paredes leaped to take a pass away from 6-foot-7 tight end Tarren Lloyd at the Hawaii 28-yard line. That set up Bryant Moniz's 18-yard touchdown pass to Greg Salas.
Paredes almost had another with 12:26 remaining in the fourth quarter, but couldn't quite corral it.
"I wish I could have gotten that one, too," he said.
Ask Paredes which was his favorite and, after a pause, he said, "My first one, because I've waited a while for it."
But the most impressive was the second one.
"I felt him (Lloyd) go behind me, and I knew he was a big guy," Paredes said. "So, I knew I had to jump as high as I could to try to get it."
The funny thing, Paredes said, "is I'm not exactly known for my hops."
But in coming down with the ball, Paredes said, "I landed wrong and it (the ankle) rolled up on me. It is pretty sore right now," he said.
But not enough to come close to vanquishing a smile.
"I'll be OK," Paredes said, limping on air.