Some things about Austin Guest changed coming into this season. One thing didn’t – he’s still a winner, of that much you can be guaranteed. On Feb. 15, he just became a different kind of winner.
With the Midlothian boys’ 2-1 win over Grand Prairie, Guest became one of the few coaches in Texas high school soccer with 200 or more wins in both the boys and girls classifications. It took the veteran coach some time before the realization set in.
“Really it took until after we got back and were really looking through the stats and putting up what the numbers were,” Guest said. “I thought about it a little before the season started but then you get involved in doing the job of doing the business of taking care of the team day-to-day.”
Guest, head coach of the boys and girls soccer programs at Midlothian since his arrival, relinquished his job as girls head coach this year to long-time assistant Sid Danner. The new district realignment to 5A made the prospect of keeping the two teams playing at the same site during the playoffs harder. With each program now having an official head coach, Guest could focus on the boys and Danner could work with the girls.
Both coaches still help each other out most of the time but if the two teams have to play at the same time or at different locations they have their focus.
For Guest, his focus is on winning.
He coached the girls programs at Red Oak and Midlothian for a combined 15 seasons and is in his 14th year of coaching the Hawks and Panthers boys’ programs. Combined between the two schools, Guest has 16 district titles, including 10 at Midlothian. His girls teams made the playoffs all 15 seasons he was a coach. In 13 years as boys coach, his teams had 10-post season trips including a 2003 state title with the Red Oak boys.
During his time on the sidelines, Guest has been district coach of the year a combined 18 times and was the 2010 TASCO Region 1 Boys Coach of the Year. He won his 200th game on the girls side on April, 1, 2008, against Cleburne.
While he doesn’t dwell on personal accomplishments, getting the historic win behind him was a bit of a relief. It was an achievement he is glad to have and be done with.
“It feels really good to have done especially since I’m concentrating a little more on the boys side and just assisting with the girls,” Guest said. “Being there with the girls that was a hurdle I wanted to get to with the boys. It’s a little bit exciting and a little bit like getting a monkey off your back so you can move on and do something else.”
This season, the boys are 11-4-2 overall and 5-1-2 in district. The Panthers are just behind rival Mansfield Legacy (7-1) with five district games left in the season, including a March 4 date with Broncos.
If the Panthers are going to add a sixth-straight district title to their trophy case, they’ll need a strong surge late. Guest expects nothing less. And in more than 15 years of coaching, he’s gotten nothing less from those he’s worked with.
“I’ve been fortunate. I’ve been at good places and I’ve had good kids and I’ve had good coaches to help me. All that stuff makes winning games a whole lot easier,” Guest said.