EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Wednesday is the first day of school here in Evansville, and on the west side, the Panthers have been putting in work this off-season to come together as a team.
In his seventh season at his alma mater, Andy Hape is putting the pieces together of his Reitz unit with less than three weeks out from the beginning of the season.
The Panthers are coming off a 6-4 2018 season that saw a third-place finish in the conference and a first-round sectional loss.
With the absence of offensive duo, Eli Wiethop and Andrew Word, the Panthers now look to junior quarterback Reid Brickey to power another high-scoring offense and lead the team through a tough SIAC slate.
“The expectation is to win the dang," said Andy Hape. "That’s what the expectations are for the community, that’s what the expectations are for us. It’s been a while since we’ve won a playoff game. I told the guys, I said ‘You might not think about it but believe me I do.’ Not only do you win a sectional, you make a deep run in this thing. We’re also focused on getting better. We’ve gotta get better week in and week out. No one likes to lose ball games, but if you do happen to stumble and trip a little bit, you have to be able to learn from it. You’ve gotta be able to move on cause it is a long season.”
The Panthers will kick off the 2019 season with a tough non-conference schedule. Reitz will first travel across the bridge to play Henderson County. Then Hape’s team will host Northeast during week two at the Reitz Bowl.