The Bods played in a nail-biter on the road this weekend against the Lindenwood Lions.
With this win, the Ichabods move to 7-1 on the season and moved up nationally to No. 6 in the polls.
Washburn’s defense in this game left much to be desired as they gave up 265 yards on the ground with 228 of those going to a single player, running back Denodus O’Bryant.
Ultimately the Bods “bend but don’t break” mentality won out as they held the Lions to just 16 points on the day. For the majority of the game though, the Ichabods played from behind and had to will themselves to victory, scoring a touchdown with 23 seconds left in the game to take the lead and ultimately capture the victory, 19-16.
“We were able to pull through as a team and keep our composure to come out with a win,” said Devon Connors, junior defensive back.
Senior linebacker Jahmil Taylor feels his team is very resilient.
“We showed that when the game is on the line we can pull together on offense and defense to get the job done,” said Taylor.
This type of victory brings with it many things to include heightened emotions.
“It was probably the most emotional game that I’ve been apart of,” said Steve Dieckhaus, senior offensive lineman. “It was great to go back home to St. Charles and get a win in front of my city. I was blessed to be able to have great support from my family and friends at the game. I was glad I was able to play in front of them and pull out the ‘W.’”
Quarterback Mitch Buhler ended the day 17 of 27 for 146 yards. Running back Hayden Groves recorded his second straight game of 100 plus yards as he went 116 yards on 19 carries and a score. Buhler also ran the final touchdown in for the win.
Pulling out a win against Lindenwood was crucial for the Bods to keep their playoff hopes alive. The MIAA has five teams in the AFCA top 25 and the last three games of the season for Washburn are against ranked foes. A misstep here could spell disaster for post-season play.
“These last few games will be close,” said Jake Cervantes, junior defensive tackle. “It’s like we are already in the playoffs. We can’t afford to lose another one and that goes for a lot of other teams in our conference and we know that.”
Washburn will play host to the No. 5-ranked Northwest Missouri State Bearcats on Saturday, at 1 p.m. The Bearcats currently have a seven game winning streak against the Ichabods and recently beat Pittsburgh State 31-21. This will be the biggest challenge of the year so far for the Bods.
“It should be a good game,” said Cervantes. “They are big and physical, but so are we.”
The pressure won’t let up after Saturday, as the Ichabods travel to St. Joseph, Mo. the following Saturday, to play No. 12-ranked Missouri Western State. The Bods finish regular season at home against undefeated and No. 15-ranked ESU.