WSN football preview vs Excel
The W.S. Neal Eagle football team will look to get back in the win column this Friday night as they return home for homecoming to face the Excel Panthers in a region game.
W.S. Neal comes into Friday’s homecoming game with the Panthers coming off two straight road games. Last week, W.S. Neal lost in Evergreen to the Hillcrest Jaguars 21-12 to fall to 3-2 overall.
“We played a physical, athletic team and you can’t afford to have the mistakes we did when you play that kind of team,” W.S. Neal head coach Doug Hoehn said. “We had three turnovers and penalties hurt us.”
Hoehn said if stats would have decided the game, it would have been in W.S. Neal’s favor.
“We roughly had 100 more yards of offense than they had and double the offensive snaps than Hillcrest,” Hoehn said. “We had close to double the time of possession they had the same thing with first downs as we had double the first downs. But penalties and turnovers stopped us from scoring. You are not going to beat a team as good as Hillcrest with that. Penalties really killed us, but we both teams played hard and it was a very physical game. It just came down to the team who made the fewer mistakes and Hillcrest was that team.”
As for this week’s homecoming game against Excel, the Panthers come into the contest with W.S. Neal with a 2-3 overall record and an 0-3 region record. Excel defeated Monroe County last week 55-6. Last year, W.S. Neal defeated Excel 44-18 in Excel to improve their series record over the Panthers to 3-0.
According to Hoehn, he thinks Excel is a “much improved” team from last year.
“They run the ball really well,” Hoehn said. “It is not always the same guy. They have three different guys that run the ball for them. Their quarterback is a good ballplayer and he can hurt you when he throws the ball.”
As for his team at the midpoint of the season, Hoehn said there has been some good things and some bad things.
“Well we are 3-2 and this past Friday night we certainly hurt ourselves,” Hoehn said. “That is a game we are going to have to put in the past and certainly improve on this week. We have been playing hard every week. We just have to limit our mistakes. I think if we can limit our mistakes and do continue to keep playing hard, I think we have a good chance to improve.”
Game time is set for 7 p.m. at W.S. Neal Stadium with homecoming festivities planned throughout the day.