Minster enters the postseason for the 11th time in school history on Saturday night when it travels to Springfield Catholic Central. The Wildcats' playoff tradition began back in 1987 under Ken Newland, who led Minster to five straight playoff appearances, an 8-5 postseason record and the 1989 Division V state championship.
Newland took Minster to the playoffs for first five years as head coach, a run of success based on a powerful running game.
"Basically our philosophy is five yards, a pint of blood and 25 bruises on the opposition," Newland told The Evening Leader back in 1989 before his team went on its state championship run.
Here's a look back at Minster's playoff history:
Minster made its first-ever playoff appearance under head coach Ken Newland. The Wildcats lost a 3-0 game to Middletown Fenwick in the opening round. But the mold was cast for a powerful program in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
Minster fell Division V state semifinal, but won the MAC title with a 5-1 record and went 10-3. Minster beat New Bremen (9-6) and Fenwick (17-6) in the playoffs before being beaten 20-0 by eventual state champion Archbold, 20-0, at the Glass Bowl in Toledo.
Minster won the 1989 Division V state championship with a victory over McDonald in the Horseshoe. Minster defeated Waynesfield-Goshen (35-14), Springfield Catholic Central (16-0), Sandusky St. Marys (16-7), McDonald (16-7) to get the title.
Minster’s run at a second straight state title ended with its second playoff loss to Archbold in three seasons — a 34-7 loss at the hands of John Downey’s Bluestreaks. Minster won drubbed Fostoria St. Wendelin, 34-7 in the opening round.
Minster fell in a regional title game to unbeaten Bluffton to end its season 10-2 record in heartbreaking fashion when the Wildcats fumbled the ball in the waning minutes with a three-point lead. Bluffton recovered the fumble, ran it into field goal range, and sent the game to overtime, where Bluffton won 24-17.
Minster lost to St. Henry 7-0 in Ken Newland’s final game.
Minster returned to the postseason after a four-year hiatus with an opening win over Cincinnati Summit Country day, 28-0, before bowing out to St. Henry in another 7-0 game. It’s Bill Place’s lone trip to the playoffs.
Minster was one of six teams to make the playoffs from the MAC. The Wildcats’ Whit Parks led his first Minster team to the playoffs, where the Wildcats run into Delphos St. John’s at the height of its late 1990s power. The Blue Jays beat Minster 76-0.
Whit Parks returns the Orange and Black to the playoffs, where Marion Local beats Minster 42-0.
In an astonishing turnaround, first-year head coach Nate Moore leads Minster to the postseason a year removed from a 1-9 record. While Minster was just 5-5 at the end of the season, the Wildcats behind the improvisational skills of senior quarterback Chase Paxson stun Springfield Catholic Central on the road, 44-21, and then beat Marion Local, 30-26 in Wapakoneta before bowing out in the regional title game to Sidney Lehman Catholic, 27-14.