La Lumiere School (La Porte, Ind.)
GEICO Seeding: 1
Super 25 Rank: 1
Key players: Isaiah Stewart, Keion Brooks, Paxson Wojcik, Gerald Drumgoole, Wendell Green Jr.
Why they’ll win: The Lakers lockup defensively, applying pressure that forces teams to make bad decisions on the offensive end or simply take bad shots. The Lakers are holding teams to 31 percent from field, 49.4 points a game and giving up just 6.4 points a game in transition. Simply put, if you can’t score, you can’t win.
Why they may slip-up: The Lakers have a tendency to give up a high number of offensive rebounds and turn the ball over; if that trend continues it could spell doom for the No. 1 seed.
The bottom line: Everyone knows about Stewart (18.1 points, 11.3 rebounds, 2.9 blocks) and Brooks (20.1 points, 7.5 rebounds), but neither are as effective as they are when Wojcik (10.1 points) and Drumgoole (11.2 points) are knocking down shots, which allows Brooks and Stewart to maneuver in the lane. If the Lakers get solid contributions from Wojcik and Drumgoole, they’re extremely hard to beat.