Niceville, FL----You could say It's been a bit of an odd stretch for the Niceville football team these past several days. They began week 8 of the season 7-0 and seemed all but invincible.
They then struggled to beat Fort Walton Beach 28-21 to go to 8-0. Last week, the Eagles suffered their first loss to Crestview 17-12, forcing a 3 way tiebreaker for their district title and runner up spot with Crestview and Tate.
The Eagles won out, claiming the championship in that Monday tiebreaker, meaning a trip to the playoffs that a few weeks ago seemed all but automatic in the first place.
"Well we would have liked to have sewn it up Friday night." Niceville head coach John Hicks told us Wednesday. "But unfortunately we had our worst game of the year, turned the ball over a lot. But you know I guess it just made it a whole lot more sweeter winning it on Monday night. If you look, most championship teams have lost a game somewhere along the way. And I think once you feel that pain of a loss there becomes a greater sense of urgency in everything you do. So hopefully that's the way it's gonna be with out team."
It's worth noting Niceville's played on and off recently without starting q-b Ashton Hooker who's battled injuries. Coach Hicks says he'll keep Hooker out of Friday's regular season finale with Bolles.
Their playoff opener next week comes at home against Leon.