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Huntley's Bryce Beschorner holds up the ball after scoring a touchdown earlier this season. The Red Raiders take on Fenwick in the first round of the Class 7A playoffs Saturday. | Michael Smart~Sun-Times Media
Most high school football teams would love to have one wide receiver who stands at least 6-foot-3. This year Huntley is blessed with two.
The Red Raiders certainly aren’t vertically challenged with 6-3 senior Bryce Beschorner and 6-4 senior Jake Lackovic lining up on opposite sides of the field. The duo has been creating match up problems for opponents all season and is a big reason why the Red Raiders will square off against Fenwick in the first round of the Class 7A playoffs Saturday night in Berwyn.
“Bryce and Jake have been outstanding all year long and they’ve complimented each other so well,” Huntley coach John Hart said. “Bryce is kind of the Wes Welker. He’s going to run perfect routes and make all the catches. Jake is almost like a Randy Moss. He’s going to make the big plays for us. So they’ve kind of got those two personalities.”
When multi-talented quarterback Kam Sallee decides to put the ball in the air, it is a safe bet Beschorner or Lackovic will be the target. The duo has combined to catch 70 of Sallee’s 88 completions this season.
Beschorner finished the regular season with 43 catches for 783 yards and 11 touchdowns, making him the top receiver in the Fox Valley Conference. In every category those numbers come close to doubling his production as a junior.
“I was confident in myself I could have a year like this,” Beschorner said. “It really came down to working hard in practice and focusing on the details. Obviously Kam has been really good and our coaches have game planned great. It’s kind of a combination of all those things.”
Lackovic sports some impressive numbers, too, with 24 receptions for 419 yards and nine touchdowns this season. His average of 17.5 yards per catch is only slightly behind Beschorner’s mark of 18.2 yards per reception.
Hart arrived at Huntley this summer after enjoying a highly successful coaching career in Indiana and downstate Illinois. He was instantly impressed with Beschorner and Lackovic, and also surprised they weren’t receiving more attention from college coaches.
The first-year Red Raiders coach says the interest in his towering receivers is picking up, and he hopes to see both players get a chance at the next level.
“I think Bryce is the best all-around receiver I’ve coached, and I’ve coached some great ones,” Hart said. “Jake is still just learning the game of football and he gets better every single week that we play.
“The top end on these two guys is high, and two colleges are going to get really lucky when these guys land.”