Ichabods struggled last season

Eric Smith

Men’s basketball has always been a cornerstone of success in Washburn University athletics. The 2006-07 team was a rare exception to the fact, though.

“Last year just wasn’t a good season for us,” said senior forward Brady Sisk. “We didn’t play as well as we wanted to. We were plagued with injury problems and overall it was just a below-average year for the team.”

Going 8-19 overall and 4-14 in the MIAA, last season wasn’t one to remember. It was the second consecutive losing season for the Ichabod men.

“It was kind of a struggle,” said senior guard Andrew Meile. “We had a pretty good team coming into it with some experience and a lot of new guys. Throughout the year we were close but were never able to get over the hump.”

In the 28-year tenure of head coach Bob Chipman at Washburn, last season was only his second losing season.

“We had a lot of talent. We just didn’t seem to put it together very well,” said Sisk. “We weren’t gelling as well as we would’ve liked. We just tried to make it the best year possible even though the record didn’t show how good we really were.”

Though the losses had a disheartening effect on the team, the players used the experience to improve their gameplay.

“Once we started losing, we kind of let that get to us,” said Sisk. “We found ourselves not really giving up but coming short of our goals. We had a chance to go to the conference tournament and we didn’t, and that kind of left a bad taste in our mouths. Last season kind of taught us to keep our heads up and to just work on getting better every day.”

The team, returning four seniors and three letter winners, looks to improve this season in any way they can.

“We played real well together and ran the offense pretty well. We were definitely a hard-working team,” said Meile. “We never put together wins so it was hard to get confidence.”

Though there weren’t a lot of memorable moments last season for the Ichabod basketball team, players were still inspired by a few key experiences.

“Our best moment last year was probably going into triple overtime against K-State,” said Sisk. “We had a lot of chances to win that game. Although we didn’t pull it out, it was one of our best games of the year. Going in there with Bob Huggins’ first game as coach and giving them a scare was quite the feeling.”

The men’s basketball team has been through a lot the last couple of years but hope to turn it around this year.

“My freshman year we won the league, and the last two years we’ve struggled. So I’ve been on both sides of the stick. I know what it feels like to win and lose,” said Sisk. “We’re really looking forward to going out there, working hard and having a great year going out with a bang.”