Huskies proud of accomplishments
Shelby-Rising City’s season came to a heartbreaking end when it lost to Oakland-Craig on the last play of the game in the first round of the playoffs.
The Huskies finished the season with a 6-4 record.
The game with Oakland-Craig was a back-and-forth battle that saw senior quarterback Mason Schleis complete 17 of his 21 passes for 237 yards and three touchdowns.
“We competed very hard and came up just short in the end,” said head coach Kevin Kopecky in comments sent to the Banner-Press. “I was very proud of how our players handled the big stage of the playoffs. All of us just hated to see the season end because we had so much fun together.”
Senior wide receiver Max Hoatson had eight receptions for 160 yards and two touchdowns in the final game.
It was the last game for 13 seniors on Shelby-Rising City: Dylan Rathman, Austin Coffin, Andric Garcia, Jacob Willis, Nick Vavricek, Connor Morrison, Connor Rathman, Alex Bunde, Whatt Whitmore, Schleis, Hoatson, Clayton Watts and Curtis Micek.
The team will return seven juniors, six sophomores and seven freshman.
Schleis finished the season completing 127 of his 197 pass attempts for 1,749 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also rushed for 571 yards on 97 carries scoring nine rushing touchdowns. Between touchdowns and conversions, he scored a team-high 88 points throughout the season.
Junior Grant Lindsley carried the ball 97 times for 571 yards and seven touchdowns.
Hoatson tallied 42 receptions for 685 yards and eight touchdowns.
Junior Jett Pinneo rushed for 82 yards, recorded 372 receiving yards, returned the ball for 326 yards on kickoffs and tallied 15 interception return yards for 795 all-purpose yards. He also intercepted a team-high three passes.
Junior Antonio Lopez led the Huskies in tackles with 103.
As a team, Shelby-Rising City completed 132 of 208 pass attempts for 1,828 yards for 17 touchdowns and 10 interceptions to compile a quarterback rating of 98.8. The Huskies recorded 758 tackles, and 69.5 tackles for a loss.
S-RC scored 45 touchdowns, one saftey, and multiple conversions for 312 total points.
The team ran the ball 284 times for 1,446 yards and 17 touchdowns, tallied 1,815 receiving yards, 411 kickoff return yards, 135 punt return yards, 176 interception return yards for 3,983 all purpose yards.
The Huskies sacked opposing quarterbacks 15.5 times.
Shelby-Rising City punted the ball 36 times for 1,171 yards, with eight punts being downed inside the 20.
“We always have high expectations for the young men in our program and this year was no exception,” Kopecky said. “This team accomplished a lot of their goals.
“Our defense really improved from a year ago. It was our second year running a new scheme on defense, so that was good to see. Our run game was much better than years past, but injuries made us more one-dimensional towards the end of the season.
“We had a great family atmosphere this year and we accomplished a lot for our school and our communities. I enjoyed working with this group of players as much as any team I’ve ever coached.”
The Huskies will be returning seven juniors for the 2019 season - Quin Micek, Grant Lindsley, Jett Pinneo, Antonio Lopez, Michael Martinez, Grant Ohnemus and Carson Rathje.
Shelby-Rising City will play its first game of the 2019 season at home against Battle Creek.
Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for the Banner-Press. Reach him via email at DVDsports@lee.net