At the heart of the Lindsay Knights’ successful run to a district title and playoff run, both sides of the ball showed they can be elite.
When the games came to an end and their season was put into perspective, the Knights had several representatives on the Associated Press Sports Editors Class 2A team.
As the head of the Knights’ offensive snake, sophomore quarterback Kolt Schuckers was selected to the first team.
Lindsay head coach Jeff Smiley said Schuckers’ potential is still to be determined.
“Kolt has a really good year and I felt like he was a better player at the end of the year than from the start,” Smiley said. “He got better each week and part of that had to do with him getting to know the offense. The best part about him is he is going to mature mentally and physically. I’m excited about what he can bring to the table.”
Schuckers was 181-of-277 passing for 2,830 yards and 31 touchdowns along with 104 rushing yards and two more touchdowns.
Smiley said Schuckers was elite as a pocket quarterback, but he said if he can add a running element to his game, Schuckers could be unstoppable at times.
“His potential is unlimited and we’re hoping he can run the ball more next year,” Smiley said. “Kolt knows that and once he becomes a threat to run it, that adds another dimension and then he turns into a really scary player.”
Junior Garrett Ellender was named to the first team for his work as a wide receiver. Ellender hauled in 51 catches for 896 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Smiley said Ellender was a threat anytime he had the ball in his hands.
“He played left tackle for us last year, so for him to step into this wide receiver role and lead the state in receptions, that’s really an amazing feat,” Smiley said. “That’s a tribute to his work ethic and he continued to improve. We used him in a lot of different ways and we would line him up at different spots. He was a really good screen runner for us. To me, what stands out is his fearlessness. He had a lot of big catches this year and a lot of those were when he knew he was going to get hit.”
Junior Tyler Yancey was selected to the second team as a defensive back. He had 24 tackles this season including three for a loss, eight pass breakups, four interceptions and one pick-six.
“Tyler has a really good skill set with really good feet and hips,” Smiley said. “He did a really good job for us and you’re out there on an island as a corner. Bad things are going to happen at times, but you have to move on to the next play. He did a really good job in that area.”
Junior linebacker Cooper Carter was an honorable mention and he paced the Knights’ defense with 120 tackles and 15 for a loss.
“We felt really comfortable this year playing man defense because we felt like we had guys that could play that,” Smiley said. “That allowed us to stop the run. This was his first year on varsity and our mike linebacker is the captain of our ship on defense. There’s a lot of communication that has to come from him and he did a tremendous job all year long.”