United will host Flanagan in 1A playoffs

Robert Blackford/Editor

The United Red Storm will host Flanagan in the first round of the Class 1A playoff at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31.

It's nice to play somebody new," said United head coach Tim Engebretson. "We've never played Flanagan. It gets old playing the same old teams."

Engebretson said " There is definitely room for improvement. We haven't played great the last couple of weeks. We can get better. We can peak in the next couple of weeks."

Engebretson said the poor weather conditions the past couple of weeks could be contributing to the team's showing. "We played pretty well during the regular season." The team's goals included getting a home playoff game and playing more than one game.

United hasn't gotten past the first round of the playoffs since its state championship season in 2004-05. They finished the 2008-09 season with a 5-4 record.

Engebretson added, "We are very healthy going into the playoffs."

Engebretson didn't watch the IHSA playoff show alone. Engebretson said, "The kids were at the house for an hour. Then they got bored and went home.

United, 8-1 is a number 2 seed while Flanagan (6-3) is a six seed.

United's only loss this year came to 2A powerhouse Mercer County. United finished the regular season as co-conference champions with Stark County and Mercer County.

Flanagan finished sixth in the Heart of Illinois Conference which sent six teams to the playoffs. Flanagan won its first four games but lost three of its final five to Lexington, Leroy and Job Linboom's (former Alexis coach) Deer Creek-Mackinaw team in week five.

Flanagan has been to the playoffs in eight of the last nine years. Last year it finished at 7-4 in Class 2A.

United is averaging 29.2 points per game offensively and allowing 16.7 points per game defensively.

Flanagan is averaging 28.9 points a game offensively and allowing 11.9 points per game offensively.