Bulldogs enter postseason still confident despite district title game loss


ABILENE, Texas - It's playoff week for high school football....meaning it win or go home and the Wylie Bulldogs are one program back in the hunt, but are doing so after a loss.

Hugh Sandifer's team is making its 24 th consecutive playoff appearance - a tradition for this well-established group, but for the first time in class 4A, the Bulldogs are not going in as the district champions. That honor belongs to Stephenville, who beat Wylie in a tough ball game on Friday night.

Wylie now will take the 2-seed into Friday's bi-district round, but let's just say this will be used as fuel for the postseason fire.

"It was a tough night, but hey - we'll use that to motivate us, but you can't dwell on it," said head coach Hugh Sandifer on Monday. "You've gotta just let it go -- I mean you can't let that loss come back and beat you again this week."

Wylie did a pretty good job of it last year, going on to make a run to the UIL State title game last year - meaning six playoff games worth of experience. The Bulldogs went deep in 2015 as well, with another handful of playoff games that led to a visit to the semifinals.

So the Bulldogs know what to expect, and feel dangerous in the postseason. But coach Hugh Sandifer feels the team brings the same confidence even after a district title defeat.

"We feel that it's our time of the year and this is 24 years in a row we've been to the playoffs," said Sandifer. "So when you get a run like that, these kids don't know anything different and so you hope that switch turns on for those guys and you go out there and play because there's no guarantees now."

Wylie will open up the 2017 postseason against Decatur on Friday at Graham's Newton Field at 7:30 p.m.

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