AUGUSTA — Cony senior Chandler Shostak and Jonathan Saban are the vertical threats, speedsters who can stretch a defense with big-play capability.

Tayler Carrier and running back Brandon St. Michel are primary options in the screen game, skill guys who can turn 5-yard gains into something much more.

Zach Lachance and Dayshawn Roberts are the possession receivers who alternate plays on one sideline.

Together, along with junior quarterback Ben Lucas, they comprise an electric passing attack that ranks among the best in the state.

“We knew early on we had a lot of potential,” Cony offensive coordinator B.L. Lippert said. “The question was, could we execute?”

It didn’t take long for the Rams to answer with a resounding yes.

After a season-opening 21-19 loss to Messalonskee, Cony won five consecutive games. The Rams scored at least 34 points a game during the run, with most of those points coming through an air attack that is designed to spread out and frustrate opposing defenses.

No. 2 Cony (7-2), which hosts No. 3 Brunswick (7-2) in a Pine Tree Conference Class A semifinal game at 4 p.m. Saturday, averages 37.9 points a game — third in the state behind Lawrence (40.7) and Foxcroft (46.4).

The strength in the Cony passing attack lies in its depth. The Rams can and will throw to as many as six players in any game. Most of them have defined roles, but Lippert and head coach Robby Vachon embrace versatility as well.

“It’s a lot of fun being in this offense,” Lachance said. “We pass pretty much every play. We do a lot of stuff.”

Added Carrier, who hopes to play Saturday after suffering a neck injury against Oxford Hills last weekend: “We’re deep and I think we make it difficult for everyone to cover us.”

The passing game, of course, starts with Lucas, who is putting up staggering statistics. The 6-foot-3 quarterback leads the PTC A in passing yards (2,332), touchdowns (30) and completion percentage (57 percent).

His targets have put up staggering numbers as well.

Shostak leads the conference with 42 catches for 681 yards. His 11 touchdowns also lead the league.

The senior captain is one of five Cony players ranked in the top 10 in receiving yards. Carrier has 40 catches for 455 yards and eight touchdowns, which ranks him second to Shostak. Saban, who played sparingly last season, has 22 catches for 401 yards.

St. Michel has 27 receptions for 301 yards while Roberts, who didn’t play last season, has 20 catches for 249 yards.

“We try to be as multiple as we can,” Lippert said. “Tayler has really come into his own the last three or four weeks. He’s got into a good rhythm. Saban can just fly, and we knew he’d be good for us. We have (three) guys with more than 400 receiving yards. I’ve never heard of that before.”

Added Roberts: “We just go out and do our jobs. We all understand the offense pretty well, too.”

Lippert said that took a little time to develop, particularly with Saban, Roberts and Carrier playing bigger roles this season.

The Rams participated in two 7-on-7 passing leagues in the summer, which helped lay the foundation for what was coming in the fall.

“We just didn’t want to be predictable,” Lippert said. “In the 7-on-7, we could see the explosiveness and the capabilities. But it took time to get into a rhythm.”

Once the Rams did, they’ve clicked since — save for a hiccup against undefeated and top-seeded Lawrence (9-0).

“We just have a lot of good athletes,” Vachon said. “Dayshawn fell into our laps. We didn’t expect him to come out and he’s been tremendous. We knew Saban would be good and we knew what we’d get from Shostak and Lachance.”

Lucas said it’s been “awesome” throwing the ball around to his plethora of weapons.

“We have formations where we have four wide receivers to one side and I’m looking at the defense and I’m thinking, ‘There’s no way these guys can cover us.’ At the beginning of the season, I thought there might be confusion. But we started feeding off each other. Hopefully, we can keep this going.”

Bill Stewart — 621-5640

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