Shrine Bowl shines

Some of the top Iowa high school seniors showcased their football skills at Jack Trice Stadium Saturday in the 29th Annual Shrine Bowl Game.

The South defeated the North 24-13, but the players said the Shrine Bowl is much more than just a football game. The experience they shared together on and off the field is something that will not soon be forgotten. The players arrived in Ames, from all over the state, on July 18 and spent the week preparing for the game and getting to know each other.

The week was highlighted by a trip to the Shriners Hospital in Minneapolis where the players got a chance to meet and interact with some of the patients.

“This week has meant a lot to me that’s all I can say,” North quarterback and offensive Most Valuable Player Wesley Beschorner of Southern Cal said. “This has been a great time in my life.”

Beschorner was the man behind some big plays for the North. He scored the opening touchdown of the game on an 8-yard touchdown run to put the North up 7-0. The South would come back with a score of their own late in the second quarter on an 8-yard touchdown reception by C.J. Barkema of Muscatine.

A 33-yard field goal by Jon Clanton of Council Bluffs Lewis gave the South a 10-7 lead, but Beschorner struck again with a 25-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

“The offensive line did ten times better in the second half,” said Beschorner. “The offense played a lot better in the second half, but we just couldn’t put it all together.”

Beschorner said he plans to attend the University of South Dakota next year and hopes to play quarterback and punt returner. The Shrine Bowl also featured Iowa State recruits Nik Moser of Fort Dodge and T.J. Klith from Cedar Rapids Prairie.