Ichabods on verge of 1,400 wins

Matt Lazzo / Washburn Review

The Ichabods continue to stay hot entering the month of February.  Winning their sixth game in a row over, Washburn hasn’t seen any holiday hangover.  With the winter snow storms still pelting the Washburn campus, the Ichabod basketball team has stayed dedicated to one common goal: winning.  

Early on in the season, the Ichabods displayed an innate ability to overcome adversity.  The Ichabods started the 2010-11 campaign with an exhibition season that consisted of three top 25 Division I teams.  To make matters worse, the Ichabods were without defensive stalwart Will McNeil.  Presumed as the starting point guard, McNeil was a member of the 2010 MIAA all-defensive team.  It was no surprise that the Ichabods struggled in the week long exhibition slate.  

“We learned from the first half of the season that if we worry about what we can control then we can play with anyone in the conference,” said sophomore forward Bobby Chipman.  

Washburn has demonstrated the importance of living by the overused sports cliché of taking one game at a time,.The bods won five of their first six and avenging last year’s MIAA championship loss to Nebraska-Omaha.  The Ichabods have hit another hot streak, winning eight of their last nine games and climbing their way back into contention for the regular season crown.  Washburn is still two games behind MIAA frontrunner Missouri Southern State University, and one game behind of Fort Hays State University, both teams still Ichabods remaining schedule.  That is not in the minds of the Ichabod players, who have done nothing wrong since Christmas.  

The Ichabods have made one of the more impressive mid-season turnarounds, moving from the middle of the pack and jumping into third place alone as the hottest team in the conference.  Winning their sixth game in a row over Northwest Missouri State University, Washburn has built momentum going into the final juncture of the season.   The Ichabods have only lost at home once this season, keeping the Washburn faithful happy for yet another month.  

Lee Arena is quietly becoming one of the toughest places to play in the MIAA.    The Ichabods are 9-1 at home this season, and have held a 42-8 record since 2007.  The win moves the Ichabods two games out of first in the MIAA standings, where they sit in third place respectively. It’s not just the fact that the Ichabods are undefeated at home this season that’s impressive, but it’s how they’ve been destroying opponents there.  Washburn has been winning those games by an average margin of 16 points.

Noteworthy players in the Ichabod hot streak are seniors Logan Stutz and De’Andre Washington.

 “We need to have great senior leadership this season, and I think we do. The other guys have to respect their seniors and buy into what they are saying,” said coach Chipman.

Washington has the quickness of a guard inside the body of a post player, making him an offensive threat every time down the court.  Averaging 16 points and 7 rebounds a game, the Ichabod’s main playmaker creates an opportunity for other players to score.  

Stutz continues to add another accolade to his stellar senior year for the Ichabods, capturing his second straight MIAA conference player of the week honor.  This is the third time Stutz has earned the award, the only player in the conference to hold it more than once.  

“The team has as much to do with it as me because of how hard we compete in practice as well as games,” said Stutz.

In his final season, Stutz is in possession of the nation’s best field goal percentage at 72 percent and is reaching heights that not many Ichabod players have had in recent years.  Stutz is also averaging 21 points a game, a mark not seen for an Ichabod player since the turn of the century.

With Wednesday night’s game against Truman State postponed, the winter wonderland has seemed to put a brief halt on the Ichabod run until Thursday night.  Last time  against the Bulldogs, Washburn lost 78-83 with Washington adding a season-high 29 points.  The Ichabods cannot take any games for granted with every game possibly adding to their start-of-the-season goal of holding the MIAA trophy.  

A win over Truman on Thursday night would give the  Ichabods their 1,400th program win all-time. As it stands right now, the Ichabods are 1,399-968 all-time in intercollegiate play. Washburn is 450-202 since joining NCAA Division II. They are the ninth most winningest team in Division II history.

In the event that Truman will not be able to make the trip to Topeka on Thursday, the rescheduled date will be announced on Thursday.