Anahuac High School Panthers head football coach Greg Neece will get a chance to face his past at 7:30 p.m. Friday night.
Neece, led the Kirbyville program from 2011-2016, winning 42 games, and he will try to win a battle of 0-3 teams seeking their first win at the most important time – District 12-3A I play – when the Wildcats come to town.
“The real season starts right now for both teams and you have to look at it that way and our team understands that,” Neece said. “We’ve started 0-3, but we have seen some promising things. It hasn’t shown in the win column, but our discipline and our offense – we are scoring 28 points per game – has stood out. I’d like to score 35 points a game.
“Kirbyville kids are tough and aggressive, they just aren’t as talented as back when I coached. But they still have a lot of pride and play hard.”
Neece said the game is a tossup.
“I would like to think we are a better football team, but we have to go out and prove that,” Neece said. “We haven’t played to our potential since our scrimmage against Hardin-Jefferson. We played well there, especially on defense. Our defense hasn’t shown up since then.”
Neece notes the team’s struggle with tackling and a lack of a physical approach.
“Once it got real and it wasn’t controlled, our mentality of our team was not there yet,” Neece said. “They don’t know how good they can be. We feel we are good enough to be a playoff team out of our district.”
Offensively Anahuac has multiple players recording big numbers including quarterback Foster Kreuzer and running back Landyn Fanus while they hope to get back top receiving target, Zion Clark, from injury.
“We went into the fourth quarter tied in our last two games,” Neece said. “The mentality of our team is at the point where we need to go all gas, no brakes the rest of the game, and I don’t know if we are real comfortable in that moment.
“That’s when you win those football games – in those moments. We are working on that. If we can get a win, that confidence will come around.”