If you haven’t noticed, OPRF football has a kicking game again. The football program hasn’t had a consistent field goal kicker in years, relying instead on the occasional extra-point booters. But OPRF soccer’s loss, is OPRF football’s gain.

Sophomore Sam Frank tried out for the boys’ soccer team this season only to be cut. Coaches got together, and OPRF soccer coach Paul Wright tipped off football coaches of Frank’s strong leg.

“Sam had a hastily arranged kicking tryout about a week before the Larkin game, and when he kicked we were simply like ‘Wow,'” said OPRF football coach Jim Nudera. “It’s so important to have a kicking game in high school football, and in the past we haven’t been real strong in that area.”

Due to IHSA rules, Frank had to participate in 12 practices before he was eligible to play in a game. He got his first taste of high school football on Sept. 17 when, thanks to Frank, the Huskies edged powerhouse Hinsdale Central 10-7 at Oak Park Stadium. The former soccer player nailed a 34-yard field goal in the win. Frank hit a 36-yarder in an 18-0 win over Morton on Saturday. Frank has converted 4 of 5 field goal attempts thus far, and split the uprights on 5 of 6 extra points.

“He’s a hard worker,” said Nudera of his new field goal kicker, “and we’re fortunate to have him.”

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