Ichabod soccer season comes to an end in MIAA tourney

Win or go home was the format for the MIAA tournament that began Thursday. The Ichabod soccer team won their first game 4-2 over University of Nebraska-Kearney by penalty kicks advancing to the semifinals.

But up next was the University of Central Oklahoma and the Ichabods just could not find a rhythm. Down 2-0 at half time, the team could not fight their way back into the game. Some of the team’s weaknesses were exploited during the game.  

“Some demons that we hid during the regular season came out and we were sluggish and looked anemic at times. Especially our transitions and attack,” Tim Collins, head coach said.

Overall this was a magical season for the team. After having some losing seasons the team had high expectations coming into the season especially with nine seniors on the roster. Although the team struggled at times, they were able to put together a run in the second half of the season that allowed them an opportunity to even play in the tournament.

“This season will be a memorable one for me especially because we exceeded the expectations of everyone,” Brianna Ament, senior said.

Earlier this week several players picked up honors. Caysie Beetley, senior, became the first Ichabod on the team since 2008 to be named to the MIAA first team. Megan Buckley, senior, was named to the second team while Kate Combs, freshman was named to the third team.  The honors did not stop there. Tori Fuglister, junior, Taylor Mayhew, senior, and Haley Ruder, freshman, all received honorable mention.

“These are all tremendous rewards because it is not just about the individual but it is about the team and what they showed could be accomplished,” Collins said.

This season was not just memorable for the players who will be graduating but also for the players who will be returning next season.

“The seniors went out with a bang and then the juniors know how high the bar is set for next season and how they have to step into leadership roles,” Collins said. “Even the sophomores and freshmen learned that hard work pays off and they will be rewarded.”  

There may be a lot of gaps to fill for next season and the team will now have even higher expectations. Yet the players did not just prove that the team could be successful to themselves but showed the university they were capable to win and for that they should not be forgotten.

“This team jump-started the program for years to come and will lead people to have higher expectations for us even three to four years down the road,” Ament said.

Although their season has ended and the players can now focus more on academics, they will not soon forget the magic and hard work it took to make Washburn soccer relevant again.