For the fourth season in a row, Waconia fans were sent home dismayed after a homecoming loss last Friday night, as the Wildcats fell 21-7 to Mound-Westonka.
WHS head coach Sam Baker said the week leading up to the game was filled with some of the best practices the team has had this season, but said the pressures of high performance against the White Hawks, who came in with the same winless record as the ‘Cats, may have gotten to the team.
“The thing we’re struggling with right now is not putting the whole weight of the world on our shoulders,” Baker said. “We’re just trying to figure out how to transfer great practices to great games.”
The White Hawks scored one touchdown in each of the first three quarters to lead 21-0 heading into the fourth. In the fourth quarter, junior quarterback Shannon Storley found senior Hunter Baumann on a 14-yard pass for the Wildcats’ touchdown. Senior kicker Charlie Spurbeck put the ball through the uprights for the 21-7 score.
While the defense played its best game of the season, according to Baker, penalties and turnovers, making for very long first, second, third, and fourth and long calls were the nails in the coffin of the offense.
“The bottom line is, we killed ourselves,” Baker said. “We had some penalties that really hurt us.”
This week, the Wildcats are on the road at Holy Family for a 7 p.m. kickoff on Oct. 4. Baker said his plan this week is to get the players to play like they’ve got nothing to lose and ignore external factors that can damage focus.
“Just trying to keep these kids motivated and stay the course,” he said. “Play fast, play physical, play free.”
The Fire come into the game with a 2-3 record after a 47-0 loss to Hutchinson. WHS fans are reminded to bring a blanket or lawn chair to Victoria this week, as Holy Family does not have a full grandstand.
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