With their highest playoff seed since 2005, the No. 5 Laramie Plainsmen plays at No. 4 Cheyenne East Thunderbirds in the quarterfinal round of the 2018 playoffs.

Even though these two teams have been playing each other since 1960, this will be just the fourth-ever meeting in the post-season. Cheyenne East leads the post-season series 3-0.

Laramie (4-5) enters off losses to No. 3 Sheridan and No. 2 Thunder Basin, but have their highest playoff seed in 13 years with the fifth seed.

Cheyenne East (7-2) is the fourth seed and comes off a loss to No. 3 Sheridan at home last week. Their bigger loss may have been in week 7. East rallied for a 24-16 win at Rock Springs but lost their starting quarterback Graedyn Buell to a season-ending injury.

This game will be a rematch of a week 5 meeting that the Thunderbirds won 31-14 in Cheyenne. A safety off a penalty, fourth down stop, and a 50-yard touchdown pass helped East stretch out a 21-14 halftime lead.

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for the Laramie Plainsmen. They’ve lost their last two games by a combined score of 92-3, and their offensive output has dwindled without senior running back Baxter Tuggle. Tuggle returns from injury, and the Plainsmen are feeling as healthy as they have in a while.

Laramie coach Clint Reed spoke about being in this position of the playoffs, how the Buell injury impacts, the return of Tuggle, preparation, and facing a good Cheyenne East defense.

KOWB’s David Settle also visited with seniors Woodrow Gamboa and Ethan Sell about getting ready for this game, their senior season, and more, as they’re looking forward to this game.

The Thunderbirds have an edge of 117 yards per game more on offense over LHS. Cheyenne East is averaging 344.3 yards and 30 points per game. Laramie is at only 227.2 yards and 19.1 points per game.

The Plainsmen do hold an advantage on defense. They allow 296 yards and 25 points per game, while the Thunderbirds give-up 326.3 yards and 20.8 points per game.

Cheyenne East had an even balance of 189 yards rushing and 189 yards passing in the first meeting. Laramie ran for 229 yards a month ago but had just 72 through the air. Tuggle led the way with 156 yards on the ground and a TD run of 77 yards.

The lone true playoff meeting was in 2001 in Cheyenne, East prevailed 31-8. The last two were consolation playoff games in 2002 and 2004. Both were won by the Thunderbirds by scores of 35-22 and 38-0.

This game will start at 6 p.m. from Okie Blanchard Stadium. KOWB (AM 1290) will broadcast the game live. Join David Settle and Curt Moore for coverage beginning at 5 p.m. You can also listen online, through the KOWB app, and any Amazon Alexa-enabled device.

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