Katy, TX — Two years ago Katy Taylor finished near the bottom of their district. Last season the Mustangs got a new head coach, Trey Hermann, and he led Taylor to a playoff birth in his first season. Now they are looking to build on to the big steps that they took in 2014 and use them towards 2015. “The retention from spring has been good. The kids are paying attention to the installs that have been put in place and a couple of adjustments we have made technique wise,” Coach Hermann stated.
The program is using their fall camp for more than just getting back out on the football field. “We spend a lot of time talking about different character traits that we’d like to see out of our kids not only in the relation in the way that they act towards each other but also what we expect to see out of them in the hallways, classroom, and those kind of things,” Coach Hermann remarked. The coaching staff prepares them for football season but they also reminds us that they’re preparing them to be positive role models in their communities.
Not only did the Mustangs make it back to the playoffs, they even defeated Reagan 37-15 in convincing fashion thanks to a big 3rd quarter to secure the victory. They did fall in the second round to Cy Woods 63-17, but they made enormous steps from where they had been a year before. “I think we [got] to stay hungry, that’s the thing that we’ve preached to our kids from the get-go,” Coach Hermann said. The Taylor head coach says that they’re fine with being picked to not make the playoffs because it makes the kids hungry and want more. He says it’s up to them whether they want to work and earn another shot in the playoffs.
In a district that features teams like Katy, Cinco Ranch, and Seven Lakes fighting for the district title, Taylor will have their work cut out for them. “It’s a tough district. Every week is going to be one of those deals where you have to come to work and put our hard hats on and play to the best of our abilities,” Coach Hermann admitted. “All of the teams are well coached and they’re great programs. We don’t have an easy game on the schedule.” The guys plan on taking one step at a time and focusing on the agenda at hand as they go.
The next big step for Taylor is to fix the little things. “I thought we played well last year. We were scrappy, had some games that put some gray hair on my head for sure,” Coach Hermann confessed. “A lot of them turned out in our favor but if it was to be one thing I think it’s to be a little more crisp in our execution.” He wants all 11 of the boys out on the field to come together and do exactly what they’re supposed to do and he believes only success will come of it.
The Mustangs have had younger players step up this summer and become vocal leaders. Junior CB Ethan Beek was a backup safety last season and Coach Hermann has been impressed on how he’s stepped up into vocal leader. Sophomore Max Wright is also one that impressed the coaching staff in that department. Senior DL Carson Gillaspia is optimistic that the guys can keep up the success from last season. “We expect ourselves to do well. We’ve worked hard all season and offseason and we hope to do better than we did last season,” Gillaspia said. Senior TE Brad Vaile hopes to build on last season as well. “I think we’re one of the top teams [in district]. We’ve got a good chance, for sure should make playoffs and make a good playoff run,” Vaile stated.
Taylor begins district on Friday, September 25 at Rhodes Stadium against Katy.
Story by Mark M Johnson