The regular season is in the rear view mirror, and the playoffs are next for 32 Big Country schools.

The Wylie Bulldogs are among that number for just the second time since 2017.

The Bulldogs claimed the District 2-5A Division II championship by beating Cooper in the Southtown Showdown.

The defense came through when they were needed in the 4th quarter with three picks and didn’t allow the Cougars to put any points on the board in the final frame.

The offense has been the story all season, but the Wylie defense delivered a district championship on Friday.

Ryan Price said, “Yeah, it felt good, and the fact that it was the district championship. It’s the first one in 5A. The first winning season on 5A, and it’s against Cooper. It’s a great feeling.”

Hayden Wright said, “It feels great knowing how far we’ve come, and how we’ve come together as a team, and how we’ve all grown together. Really, the credit goes to the seniors. They bring us together and teach us leadership, and they are really big leaders on this team.”

Clay Martin said, “Coach Bryan Hill, the defensive coordinator, has done a great job bringing those guys along. We’ve gained experience. I think we’ve gotten better defensively.”

Wylie opens the playoffs at Sandifer Stadium against El Paso High on Thursday night.

The Bulldogs and the Tigers kick it off at 6 p.m.