8Man Playoffs Breakdown, 1st round
- Dayspring Christian vs 16. Elbert Saturday 1:00 pm
The defending state champion’s season was great. They didn’t lose a single game and none of their games were within single digits. They did have a couple close games against Caliche and Akron, 13 and 12 points. Daysprings Christian offense was on fire this year averaging 39 ppg. and their defense was great posting 4 shutouts and only 3 games over 20 points giving up an average of 7 ppg. Dayspring Christian played 4 playoff teams and won every game. Elbert had a good season only had 2 losses all year and finished second in the Central League. They snuck into the playoffs but now have a daunting task ahead of them. Elbert will have to figure out a way to slow down one of the best offenses in the country and that could be tough. Elbert’s defense had 4 games where over 20 points were scored two of those games were losses. They did average 34 ppg so if Elbert’s offense can score if could be closer than expect. Elbert also has a bad loss on their schedule with a loss to 2-7 Kiowa. Dayspring Christian should win this game easily and move forward with their title defense.
- Vail Christian vs 9. Merino Saturday 1:00 pm
Vail Christian had a great season going undefeated and winning the Central League. They dominated the teams on their schedule allowing over 10 points twice and scoring over 30 points in every game. The biggest knock on Vail Christian is there lack of Playoff teams. They only played one team that made the playoffs and that was 16th seeded Elbert. Vail Christian did score plenty of points this year averaging 45 ppg and only giving up 6 ppg. Like I said earlier the only problem is the lack of a quality win. Merino finished fourth in the toughest league in 8 man, the league got 5 teams into the playoffs. Merino had a very tough schedule playing 7 playoff teams, they won 4 of those games against Simla, Granada, McClave, and Sedgwick County. The losses were to Dayspring, Caliche and Akron all with higher seeds. Merino would have received a home berth if they didn’t have to guarantee home games to league champs. Merino was very good all year averaging 29 ppg and allowing 16 ppg. The biggest difference is the strength of schedule Merino’s stats look worse due to higher competition and they played 7 of 9 games against playoff teams. Merino will walk away with a victory because they are battle tested and very good defensive team.
- Granada vs 13. Sedgwick County Saturday 1:00 pm
Granada had a great year in route to a league championship, only losing one game to 9th seeded Merino. They played 3 playoff teams this year and won 2 of the games. They lost to Merino and beat McClave and Springfield. Granada offense has been on a tear since their loss to Merino. They averaged 46 ppg. on offense. The big problem early on was Granada defense in the first four games they allowed over 22 points in every game. From week 5 on Granada defense really picked it up and only allowed over 14 points once. Sedgwick County finished 5th in the Plains League. Before getting to the top league teams they were dominate scoring 66 ppg. Then they hit the meat of their schedule and lost 4 straight games. Sedgwick was still very competitive in every game but Dayspring Chr. and Akron were they lost those games by 32 and 39. Sedgwick County did play four playoff teams losing to all four. Granada better be careful not to overlook Sedgwick County. They had a common opponent in Merino both teams lost to Merino. Granada lost 16-28 and Sedgwick lost 22-30. So on paper this is looking to be a very good game. Not a typical 4 vs 13 matchup. I think that Granada has come into form as the season has progressed and think that Granada will sneak out of this game with the win. I expect it to be high scoring and see both teams scoring over 30 points.
- Akron vs 12. Sargent Saturday 1:00 pm
Akron finished third in the Plains league and had a great season. Their two losses are to 3rd seeded Caliche and 1st seeded Dayspring Chr. Akron started off the season with a bang winning 5 straight before running into defending champions Dayspring Chr. losing 20-32. During their 5 game winning streak they beat three playoff teams Fowler 54-6. Simla 62-26, and Merino 20-12. Akron has averaged 43 ppg the big weakness with Akron has been defense allowing 22 ppg. Their defense faltered late against Dayspring giving up a 95 yard run with the score tied and also getting dominated by Caliche. If Akron’s defense can get back into form they can be scary team to play. Sargent finished second in the Mountain League. They started off the season with two straight losses to quality teams. Sargent is also a very young team and would take some time for players to develop especially after losing a standout player. Sargent lost 3 of four to open the season. The three losses were to playoff teams; Springfield, Caliche, and Norwood. They did get some important victories to secure second by beating Sanford and Dove Creek. Sargent’s offense has really picked up the pace in the last 5 games of the season averaging 45 ppg compared to the first four averaging 11 ppg. They played a tough schedule playing 4 playoff teams losing to all of them. Akron and Sargent do have a common opponent in Caliche. Both teams lost to Caliche, Akron lost 24-49 and Sargent lost 0-48. I don’t think Sargent defense has improved enough this year and Akron should easily roll into the next round.
- Caliche vs 14. McClave Saturday 1:00 pm
Caliche had a great season with only one loss to defending state champions Dayspring Chr. and finished second in the plains league. Caliche played a tough schedule playing 5 playoff teams and winning four of them; Sargent, Sedgwick Co, Akron, and Merino. Caliche one loss was to Dayspring Chr. and was decided by 13 points. They averaged 43 ppg and have been even more dominate of defense allowing 13 ppg. Caliche was only challenged once outside of their loss and that was to Sedgwick county 36-26. McClave finished third in the Ark Valley League and earned a playoff berth. McClave played four playoff teams and lost to all of them. McClave big problem has been defense they have allowed over 30 points 5 times and have a bad loss to Haxtun. I just don’t think McClave will be able to score enough points to keep up Caliche. They have a couple Common opponents in Haxtun and Merino. Caliche beat them both 56-12 and 37-14. McClave lost to both 14-32 and 14-58. I don’t think this will be a close game and I think Caliche will win big.
- Sangre De Cristo vs 11. Hoehne Saturday 1:00 pm
Sangre de Cristo finished of their undefeated regular season, they have been dominate all year. Sangre De Cristo has only allowed over 20 points twice and not really been challenged by any of their opponents. The biggest knock on Sangre is the lack of quality opponents they played two playoff team in Sargent and Fowler, they did beat both of them pretty bad 36-12 and 42-14. Even with the lack of quality teams they figure to be very good averaging 47 ppg and allowing 14 ppg on defense. The biggest difference between them and Vail Christian is they at least played two playoff teams and have dominated every game. Hoehne had a good season finishing second in their league. They lost to two playoff teams Springfield 6-36 and Simla 14-54. They did beat two playoff teams in McClave and Fowler. Hoehne is a typical power house team and are having a down year but are no team to take as a joke. Hoehne averaged 39 ppg and their defense allowed 18 ppg. These two teams had some common opponents. They both played Custer County, Fowler, and Dove Creek. Both teams beat all three Sangre de Cristo won 48-28, 42-14, and 47-16 and Hoehne won 45-20, 34-8, and 46-6. I think this game is going to be a high scoring affair. I am guessing that both teams score over 30 points but Sangre de Cristo will do enough to win this game with its defense.
- Simla vs 10. Springfield Saturday 1:00 pm
Simla had a tough start to their season losing two of their first three, the losses were too quality teams in Merino and Akron. Since those back to back loses they have been on a roll winning 6 straight games in route to the league title. Simla played 4 playoff teams winning 2 Fowler and Hoehne and losing two. After those loses Simla has been great. Scoring over 45 points and only allowing over 10 points three times. Simla averaged 45 ppg and on defense they allowed 16 ppg. Simla will need to keep playing at a high level to have a shot at winning. Springfield had a great season losing one game but beating some quality teams in the process. Springfield beat Sargent, Hoehne, and McClave, their loss was to Granada in the final week of the season. Springfield averaged 39 ppg and allowed 12 ppg. This will be a good game. They have a common opponent in Hoehne. Both teams beat Hoehne, Simla won 54-14 and Springfield won 36-6. The key to this game will be whose defense shows up. Both teams are very capable of scoring and I figure there will be plenty of it but the key will be whose teams gets a big stop or a turnover. I think Simla will sneak out of this game and into the next round.
- Norwood vs 15. Fowler Saturday 1:00 pm
Norwood had a great season only having one game within 10 points and that was to a Blanding UT JV team. They also had a closer call with Sargent winning by 12. Norwood is a traditional powerhouse team and looks to be the same this year. Grabbing the two seed even though they only played 1 playoff team. They did score a lot of points this year averaging 45 ppg. Norwood this year is looking at taking the next step and winning the gold ball that will start with this week’s game vs Fowler. Fowler had a tough season losing to 4 playoff teams. They did finish in third place with a nice run in their league and got into the playoff. They will have a tough time stopping Norwood who has been dominate all year. Norwood should win this game and move into round 2.