Washburn dispatches Peru State 97-72

Rob Burkett

With a strong crowd in attendance, led by a fully energized pep band, Washburn put a hurting on Peru State University Tuesday night as the Ichabods inaugurated the home portion of the 2011-12 schedule.

Leading the charge, Will McNeill, junior guard, who led all Washburn scorers with 21 points, and the Ichabods jumped out to an early lead in the first half. Peru State however wouldn’t give up as easily as they did a year ago when Washburn hosted the Bobcats in what ended up a 97-50 one sided victory for the Ichabods.

With a strong defensive effort, PSU tied up the score often in the first 10 minutes of the game which saw seven ties and four lead changes throughout the entirety of the period. With the Bobcats giving a solid accounting of themselves, Washburn didn’t take their opponent for granted.

“It seems like every team in America has one or two great players,” said head coach Bob Chipman. “We saw that again tonight with [Derrick Williams] really hitting us hard tonight.”

Washburn however was able to to open a lead toward the end of the first half through timely three point shooting from junior forward Bobby Chipman, who shot 2-3 from beyond the arc in the game leading the Ichabods who shot 11-18 overall in the game from three point range.

“Well y’know Bobby bless his heart, had been struggling from outside coming into this game, really the whole team had been struggling,” said Chipman. “We were able to break out early though in this game and it was nice to see. Hopefully we’ll continue to do this going forward.”

With first half contributions on the boards by sophomore forward Zack Riggins and Bobby Chipman, 5 and 4 rebounds respectively, the Ichabods were able to command the glass leading in rebounds 17 to the Bobcat’s 14 rebounds. Washburn edged out PSU overall in the game 32-27 on the glass.

Washburn ended the first half on a 9-5 run to go into the locker room leading 50-37 at the half.

In the second half it was much the same as the first half with the Ichabods jetting out to a ballooning lead on the legs of a 10-5 run. Junior guard Martin Mitchell in particular stood tall in the second half, scoring 11 points in the period and finishing the game with 13 points.

On the defensive end of the court Washburn was able to contain the Bobcat attack on the glass and inside, forcing PSU to the perimeter to get most of their points throughout the game, dominating in the lane 48-30. Washburn also managed 15 steals as a team while taking advantage of self inflicted wounds as the Bobcats gave up 25 total turnovers on the game.

At the end of the game Washburn took the win decisively 97-72, moving to 3-2 on the year. The Ichabods now look forward to a matchup against Newman University who have gone undefeated thus far in their season 5-0. Four of the five wins have come by 20 plus point margins. The Ichabods will take the court 1 p.m. Nov. 25 at Lee Arena.