Falcons Turn Page to Next Season

Falcons Turn Page to Next Season

by Steve Gamel

Lake Dallas is one of the smaller Class 5A teams in the state with an enrollment of 1,260 students. But that hasn’t stopped the Falcons from being competitive against bigger opponents.

The Falcons finished 7-5 in 2017 and got back into the playoffs for the 10th time over the past 12 seasons. That run included thrilling wins over The Colony and Little Elm in the regular season and a late touchdown to steal a 37-34 win over Frisco Reedy in the first round of the playoffs. Lake Dallas eventually lost in the second round to North Forney.

Despite having its playoff run cut short, the Falcons averaged 345 yards and nearly 30 points per game. Some of the jaw-dropping individual performances include junior quarterback Ryan Depperschmidt, who proved to be one of the more dynamic dual-threat quarterbacks in the area by throwing for 2,392 yards and 21 touchdowns and rushing for 507 yards and 17 scores.

Depperschmidt wasn’t the only Falcon soaring to new heights. Wide receiver Brandon Engel caught 59 passes for 951 yards and eight touchdowns while Ky’lee Smith added 580 yards through the air and 372 more yards in the run game.

With both those athletes coming back next year, expect bigger things from the Falcons.

Another perk that should benefit Lake Dallas next year will be the University Interscholastic League’s recent announcement of a split division in Class 5A. By creating a Division I and Division II, the UIL can lump schools with similar enrollment figures together for both the district schedule and playoffs.

Lake Dallas, which is one of the smaller Class 5A teams in the state, is on its way to Class 5A Division II, which will include schools with enrollment numbers between 1,150 and 1839. All schools with enrollments between 1,840 and 2,189 will now be in Class 5A Division I.

“It levels off the disparity and creates a level playing field,” head coach Michael Young told Lake Cities Living earlier this year. “Any coach will tell you that numbers are very important.”

All that’s left now is to wait and see which district Lake Dallas is added to during the biennial realignment day on February 1. One thing we do know is that six of the Falcons’ former district mates in 14-5A will be moving up to 5A Division I, making them unavailable to compete against Lake Dallas moving forward. Prosper, which won the district title, will move up to Class 6A. Prosper’s enrollment number of 2,975 shows just how big a disparity there was between Lake Dallas and its opponents.

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