Football: Two games stand between Cy-Fair, playoffs
Don't call it a turnaround — yet.
The Cy-Fair Bobcats have come a long way from last season's 0-10 campaign. They're 6-2 overall and 5-2 in District 17-5A after a big win last week, but coach Ed Pustejovsky is far from satisfied.
As far as he's concerned, they're still facing the wrong direction until they're facing someone in the first round of the playoffs.
"I don't want us to come around and pat ourselves on the back, do something like that. Us turning it around is us getting in the playoffs like we have in the past when we had the three-year run," Pustejovsky said.
"That's our goal and we're just not there yet."
Pustejovsky was hesitant even to talk about how his Bobcats got to this point, where a return to the playoffs is within sight, for fear it might be detrimental to their goal. But it's worth talking about.
The Bobcats were rolling three years ago, when they made the third of three consecutive postseason appearances. They went 12-2, won a co-district title and went to the regional finals in 2006.
Then Cy Woods opened - and Cy-Fair faltered.
The Wildcats went 8-3 in their first varsity season in 2008, with many of the players who would have been Bobcats. Without them, Cy-Fair won just one game in 2008 and none last season.
Pustejovsky refuses to blame expansion, but the correlation's there, and the losing definitely wasn't fun.
"It's very tough," he said. "It's a difficult situation for anybody who goes through that. It's not easy on the coaching staff or the players - it's a tough deal, especially when you're used to winning.
"We set a goal back in November last year to work hard and try to get Cy-Fair football back where it needs to be, and so far we've taken steps to get there, but we're not there yet."
The Bobcats didn't make any major changes in the offseason. They didn't hire new assistant coaches or alter schemes. They simply left the past in the past, stayed positive and kept working hard.
"The kids always played hard and practiced hard and did the things they were asked to do by the coaching staff," Pustejovsky said.
"It was just a couple of tough years for us."
Now the Bobcats are preparing for an important couple of games, against Cy Ranch (4-4) and Jersey Village (1-7). If they win out, they're back in the postseason party.
Until then, Pustejovsky wants the celebrating kept to a minimum.
"Our kids have done a really good job of understanding that we can celebrate the wins that night and possibly Saturday, but then that win has come and gone and it really doesn't matter," he said.
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