HUNTLEY – They just needed a win, but Kam Sallee delivered an exclamation point.
Huntley’s quarterback completed 10 of 12 passes for 165 yards and four touchdowns to lead the Red Raiders to a 41-0 win over McHenry in Fox Valley Conference Valley Division action Friday.
The senior also carried the ball four times for 97 yards and nailed five of six extra point kicks to ensure Huntley (6-3 overall, 5-1 FVC Valley) returns to the playoffs for the fourth time in school history next week.
“That’s the Kam Sallee that I told everybody was here,” Huntley coach John Hart said. “He’s truly a great athlete, and when he’s running on all cylinders he’s really really special.”
Sallee hooked up with senior wide receiver Bryce Beschorner five times for 97 yards and a touchdown, and senior running back Ethan Connor (64 yards) and junior Jake Scalise (64) led the way for the Red Raiders on the ground en route to 455 total yards of offense.
“This is a great way to end our regular season and start our playoffs,” Sallee said. “I’m kind of anxious on where we’re going to be seeded and who we’re going to be playing, but this was good to get all our feelings out on senior night.”
The injury-laden Warriors did what they could without starting quarterback Kyle Snedeker, but Huntley didn’t relent. The Warriors (3-6, 1-5) earned one nonpenalty first down and battled to keep sophomore step-in quarterback Mike Briscoe from getting sacked.
Senior John Konstantelos rushed for a team-high 14 yards.
“We had about eight starters out due to injury,” McHenry coach Dave D’Angelo said. “This is not indicative of what our team is about. When you’re trying to build a program, and you just don’t have the numbers right now ... it’s tough.”
On Huntley’s second play of the game, Sallee ran 58 yards upfield with help from his offensive line that set up a 1-yard touchdown run for Connor.
“I saw a bunch of white, and then I just bounced it outside and then just kept going,” Sallee said.
The Red Raiders scored on their next four possessions - all on passes from Sallee.
McHenry junior Jake Huffman reeled in an interception, and Sallee afterward realized his mistake.
“Whenever he through the interception he threw a great ball but the wrong read, and he goes ‘I just tried to squeeze it in; It was stupid.’ ” Hart said.
Sallee connected with senior Jake Lackovic for 14-yard and a 31-yard touchdowns, and he found Mitch Kawell for a 4-yard touchdown pass. Beschorner ended the half with a 26-yard diving over-the-shoulder grab to put Huntley up, 34-0.
A 7-yard touchdown run from Scalise with 6:56 left in the fourth quarter ended the scoring and brought out Huntley’s JV squad.
Even with the momentum at their back and another win, Hart acknowledged that a tough road through the Class 8A playoffs likely lay ahead.
“We’ll have an uphill battle ... but it’s exciting to be there,” Hart said. “We’re trying to think like an 8A team, act like one and play like one, so if it’s 8A we’re perfectly fine with that.”