In the playoffs, anything can happen. At least that's what the Northwestern Warriors are hoping as they come into Saturday as 45-point underdogs against the Wyoming Cowboys. The playoffs are an interesting time of year as 7 teams fulfill their most ambitious goal in winning a state championship while the other 217 playoff teams will end their season with a loss. This matchup is no different as the winner will continue their playoff run while the loser will end its 2018 season with a loss. Northwestern comes in as Division 4's 64th-ranked team. Wyoming comes in ranked 3rd. A new matchup on the schedule for each team, Saturday's game is a chance for each to test its skills and strategies against an unfamiliar opponent. Usually, matchups from the previous year are used in developing a strategy for upcoming games. For these two, no such opportunity will be afforded.
Looking to build upon their 2-game winning streak, Northwestern comes into the week at 7-3. After their 37-13 win against the Graham Falcons, they are confident in their ability to finish strong. The Warriors have struggled on offense, scoring only 21.67 points per game over their last 3 games. On the year, they rank 31st in Division 4, scoring an average of 30.8 points per game over the course of the season. Their defense hasn't been much better throughout the course of the season, ranking 24th with an average of 16.8 points allowed per game. In recent weeks, they have improved, giving up an average of 10.8 points over their last 5 games.
For Wyoming, Saturday is a chance to expand on a 10-game winning streak after their 37-7 win against the Indian Hill Braves brought their record to 10-0. Thus far, the Cowboys offense has averaged 45.9 points per game offensively, which ranks 13th in the state. In recent weeks, they've been even more powerful, scoring an average of 52.86 points per game over the last 7 weeks. On defense, they're also one of the state's best, giving up an average of 6.4 points per game, which ranks 9th in the state. Over the last 7, they've allowed an even more impressive 4 points per game.
Prediction: Wyoming to win (99.99% chance of victory)