Bods blast Bearcats, make playoffs

Matt Gonzales

A bruising ground attack that racked up 362 yards of offense keyed Washburn to a 37-14 victory against Southwest Baptist University Saturday in Bolivar, Mo., and secured a spot in the Division II playoffs.

“We played our way into the playoffs and feel like our team is very deserving of this opportunity,” said Craig Schurig, Washburn football coach. “We came together as a team after the Central Missouri game and have been playing with our backs against the wall ever since. Things came together for us.”

The Ichabods (8-3, 7-2 MIAA) will make their second playoff appearance in three years, facing West Texas A&M Nov. 17 in Canyon, Texas.

“We’re excited to have an opportunity to continue playing,” said Schurig. “We are playing as well as anybody in the country right now. We had a really good year despite a few setbacks early, and we have a good chance to carry that success over to next year.”

Freshman Terrence Lowe was the centerpiece of the Ichabods’ star-studded ground game, rushing for 177 yards and a score.

Playing in his final regular season game, senior Ra’Shawn Mosley chipped in 145 yards rushing, while sophomore dual-threat Brandon Walker added another 59 yards on 11 attempts. Washburn senior quarterback Jordan Brill was 10 for 18 passing for 156 yards, while throwing two interceptions.

“We had high expectations coming into the season,” said Brill. “Hopefully things will work out for us. I’ve had a lot of ups and downs, but it’s been a fantastic experience playing here four years.”

A pair of short touchdown runs in the second quarter, courtesy of Mosley and Walker, put Washburn up 17-0 heading into halftime. Early in the third quarter Washburn free safety Jarod Tetuan took an interception 47 yards to the house. The extra point staked Washburn to a 24-0 lead.

Washburn’s defensive line, anchored by senior defensive tackle Eric Butler, was overpowering, holding the Bearcats to 41 yards rushing on the afternoon. Butler had two sacks, as well as a 1-yard touchdown plunge late in the third quarter that put Washburn up 30-7.

“As a team we improved tremendously from the first game against Chadron State,” said Schurig. “We knew coming into the year we would have a strong defensive line with Eric [Butler] on it. We have had a lot of guys step up on defense. Zach [Watkins] and Cary [Williams] have had fantastic years.”

Senior Cary Williams, one of the top defensive backs in the country, had his seventh interception of the year against Southwest Baptist. Mosley finished the year with 1,162 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns, while Walker displayed his big-play explosiveness with 1,154 yards of total offense and 13 touchdowns.

“Coming into the year we knew we had the potential to be an explosive offense,” said Schurig. “A key to that has been that Brandon has really come around of late. He has shown a tremendous ability to turn a short run into a long gain.”

Washburn Related

Washburn’s Jake Lebahn and Zach Watkins won MIAA offensive and defensive players of the week, respectively, for the week of play ending Nov. 4.