STATE CHAMPIONS: Midlothian Boys Soccer Team Makes History & Their Future Looks Bright

Midlothian Panthers boys soccer team
Photo credit Amy Nutt

The Midlothian Panthers soccer team made history this season, bringing home the program’s first state championship in their first appearance at the state tournament. They did so, defeating Frisco Wakeland 3-1 in the final at Birkelbach Field in Georgetown for the 5A title.

It capped a 25-2-3 season for the Panthers. Head coach Austin Guest compared the moment to another point in history.

“I think it’s an awesome opportunity for a really outstanding group of young men – and women, our two student trainers and assistant head coach – to be recognized for their hard work, grit, determination and commitment to work together as a team,” Austin said. “The ability of the whole group to work together for each other and never, never quit was like watching a Winston Churchill speech come to life before your very eyes.”

The Panthers ended the season with a 15-game winning streak and were 14-0-2 in District 8-5A. Their league unbeaten streak has now reached 42 games (36-0-6) since they last lost, 5-0, at Red Oak on Jan. 28, 2022.

In the postseason, the Panthers outscored their seven opponents 21-7.

The roster featured eight seniors, or as Guest said, “We’ll get to start next year with 14 returning state champions. This year, we started with zero.”

While no individual records were set in 2024, there were several memorable seasons, including 79 goals scored between junior Ayden Hildreth (29) seniors Landon Exley (26) and Caden Naizer (24). Naizer (22), Hildreth (21) and junior Marcus Manu (10) combined for 53 assists.

The defense, along with goalkeepers senior Kyle Allen and sophomore Jacob Warren, allowed just 29 goals in 30 games and only 11 in district. Allen posted six shutouts, and Warren had four.

Also, in an extreme rarity, Allen scored the game-winning goal in a 2-1 regional semifinal win over Lubbock Monterrey.

Hildreth, Exley, Naizer and Allen were named to the All-State Tournament Team. Hildreth was named tournament MVP.

Guest said this championship is for the entire community.

“We are really fortunate to have tremendous community support from the board, admin building, athletic department, campus coordinator, and principals, down to the parents and fans who came to the matches,” he said. “We had soccer alumni there who graduated 20 years ago, driving several hours to experience the event with their children.

“I’ve literally had hundreds – no hyperbole – of texts and emails congratulating the team. We had numerous previous soccer booster club presidents there alongside our present board waving flags and organizing supporters.”

Guest noted that this group of seniors were also the program’s first seventh-grade soccer players.

“They are the first ones with six years of their lives invested in the program,” he said. “All of these elements combine synergistically to create a first-class community of athletes and their supporters.”

Guest said that optimism is high and that this championship has set the tone for more to come.

“I think we’re all just really optimistic that seeing this level of success from such a great group of kids has broken the state championship glass ceiling and will be an inspiration for our other teams at MHS now and in the generations to come to set the bar really, really high,” he said.

People standing on football field
City Council member join Mayor Coffman at Midlothian Pep Rally Photo Midlothian Mayor FB page


The Duncanville Panthers (20-3-3) topped other area teams with a Class 6A state tournament berth, falling in the semifinals to Katy Seven Lakes, 2-0. En route to state, the Panthers defeated Pflugerville Weiss 3-0, Rockwall 1-0, Garland 1-0, The Woodlands in a shootout after tying 1-1 in regulation, and Cypress Woods 1-0 in the Region II final.

The Panthers finished third in District 11-6A and caught fire in the playoffs. Overall, they outscored their opponents 79-18 on the season.

trophies with Duncanville soccer players
Photo credit Duncanville ISD

In all, 11 boys teams and 10 girls teams reached the postseason from the area, with nine (4 boys, 5 girls) advancing beyond the first round. Besides Midlothian and Duncanville, the other teams and their respective playoff performances are:

Boys: Mansfield Lake Ridge, 6A area; Grand Prairie, Waxahachie, South Grand Prairie, 6A bidistrict; Midlothian Heritage, Ennis, Red Oak, 5A bidistrict; Wilmer-Hutchins, 4A Region II semifinals; Venus 4A bidistrict.

Girls: Lake Ridge, Duncanville, and Mansfield, 6A area; South Grand Prairie and Mansfield Legacy, 6A bidistrict; Midlothian and Red Oak, 5A third round; Midlothian Heritage, 5A bidistrict; Venus and Wilmer-Hutchins, 4A bidistrict.

Recapping the Panthers’ championship season

Record: 25-2-3.

District 8-5A record: 14-0-2, first place.

Goals for-against: 114-29.

District goals for-against: 73-11.
Win streak: 15.

Shutouts: 10, including one stretch of five games.

Surrendered a single goal: 13 times.

Scored five goals or more: 10 times.

Record in one-goal games: 8-1.

Playoff record: 7-0.

Playoff goals for-against: 21-7.

Postseason results

Bi-district: Midlothian 2, Grapevine 1

Area: Midlothian 5, Northwest 2

Regional quarterfinals: Midlothian 3, Saginaw 2

Regional semifinals: Midlothian 2, Lubbock Monterrey 1

Regional final: Midlothian 3, El Paso Burges 0

State semifinals: Midlothian 3, Baytown Goose Creek Memorial 0

State final: Midlothian 3, Frisco Wakeland 1

Individual leaders

soccer player

Goals: Ayden Hildreth 29, Landon Exley 26, Caden Naizer 24.

Assists: Naizer 22, Hildreth 21, Marcus Manu 10.

Goalkeeping: Kyle Allen 6 shutouts, Jacob Warren 4 shutouts.


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Rick Mauch
Rick Mauch is a veteran of more than four decades in the media. He began writing in high school and immediately went into broadcasting for almost a decade after graduating, working his way to morning drive in Birmingham, Alabama. However, realizing how much he missed writing (though he did continue to do some during his time in top-40 radio), Rick returned to what he loved and has been doing it ever since. Rick's career has spanned a plethora of media outlets, including community journalism, sports, entertainment, politics and more. He's worked in print, broadcast and online media. He also spent several years doing public relations for a children's home in East Texas - still writing on the side, of course. When he's not writing, Rick loves to play golf and do Bigfoot research. He's an avid believer. He also made his first hole-in-one in June of 2020. Rick is married to Junell Mauch. They have five children and three granddaughters

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