In the playoffs, anything can happen. At least that's what the Lutheran East Falcons are hoping as they come into Sunday as 37-point underdogs against the Pleasant Spartans. 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 2019 season with a loss. Lutheran East comes in as Division 5's 61st-ranked team. Pleasant comes in ranked 11th. A new matchup on the schedule for each team, Sunday'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.
Lutheran East is currently on a 4-game winning streak, which they hope to continue on Sunday. Coming off of a 28-14 win against the Gilmour Academy Lancers, they are 8-2 and their confidence continues to build as they finish up the year. Particularly in recent weeks, the Falcons offense has struggled to put points on the board. In their last 2 games, they've put up an average of 14.5 points per game. Throughout the course of the season, they've averaged 29.5, which ranks 38th in Division 5. Their defense hasn't been much better throughout the course of the season, ranking 17th with an average of 15.7 points allowed per game. In recent weeks, they have improved, giving up an average of 7 points over their last 2 games.
For Pleasant, Sunday is a chance to expand on a 5-game winning streak after their 54-44 win against the Galion Tigers brought their record to 8-2. The Spartans have been one of the most prolific offenses in the state and even stronger in their most recent contests. Scoring an average of 43.9 points per game, their offense ranks 25th in the state. Over their last 2 games, they've been even more impressive, scoring an average of 52 points per game. On defense, they rank 73rd in their division, giving up an average of 28.1 points per game.
Prediction: Pleasant to win (99.90% chance of victory)