Lufkin has proven to be a true power house when it comes to soccer in East Texas as both the boys and girls varsity teams went undefeated to win district.
For the girls, they clinched their first-ever district title in program history.
“It's really nice because we'll be remembered,” said senior defender Kaela Stripling. “We planned to be as good as we are now.”
“I feel like it's the team chemistry and everybody wants to win. It was tough, but we got it,” said senior midfielder Mirka Zamarripa.
Besides tallying up a staggering 47 goals during the district campaign, what might be more impressive is their defensive stats. The Lady Panthers allowed just one goal in district play.
“We have a really strong defensive back line. We work really well together. We talk really well,” said Stripling.
The girls aren't soaking in all the glory alone as the boys also clinched district for the first time since 2002.
Their winning record started before district, as they came in on a seven game winning streak.
“I think other teams saw us as a target saying they were going to try to beat Lufkin and Lufkin was the team to beat, but we handled it well,” said senior midfielder Cesar Camacho.
Winning 19 straight games later proves just how well the Panthers handled that target. The Pack accumulated 32 goals over the course of the season with just five goals against.
“There were games when we were down and we had to come back, so that says something about the team and the way we can fight,” said senior defender Jake Williams.
“They're really tough. Along the way, during the streak, they had to find a lot of different ways to get it done,” said head coach Russell Shaw.
For most of the players, they've been playing together for years. They didn't just win district as teammates, they won as family.
“It was great because these guys are our brothers. We're family now and it's a great feeling winning district with them. It's our last year so we have to make it count,” said Camacho.
Next for the Panthers is playoffs. Both teams will be playing this Thursday. The girls will play Pine Tree at 5 p.m. and the boys will be playing Longview at 7 p.m. Both of these games will be at Rose Stadium in Tyler.
Copyright 2015 KTRE. All rights reserved.