Rebounding from a 28-point loss to the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, the Washburn Ichabods men’s basketball team edged past the Cameron University Aggies 64-60 in overtime in their last outing at Lee Arena.
This was the fourth time in seven games Washburn has taken its opponent into overtime this season. Playing a combination of man-to-man defense and 2-3 zone, the Ichabods held the Aggies to 20 points in the first half.
“Our guys played hard on the defensive end tonight. I thought the defense definitely won the game for us,” said Bob Chipman, Washburn head basketball coach.
With the Ichabods trailing 12-7, Brady Sisk, Washburn junior forward, provided a spark off the bench, scoring eight consecutive points during a 13-0 Washburn run that gave them a 20-12 lead with six minutes to play in the first half. After the Aggies cut the lead to 20-17, Washburn responded with a 9-0 run, however, Aggies guard Joseph Bolden hit a half court shot as time expired in the first half cutting the Ichabods lead to 29-20.
“Offensively if you rated our team on a scale of 1 to 10, we were about a 3,” said Chipman. “We just couldn’t get anything going, we couldn’t hit a shot. It was a struggle.”
The Aggies opened up the second half by going on a 12-0 run, giving them a three-point lead. The Ichabods had major offensive problems as they were unable to score any points for the first seven minutes of the second half. The Ichabods regrouped and eventually took a 43-39 lead after Mike Williams, Washburn senior guard, hit a 3-pointer with eight minutes remaining. The Aggies responded during the next five minutes with a 7-0 run to take a 46-43 lead.
With one minute remaining and the score tied 51-51, Marlon Bernard, Cameron center, hit a layup to put the Aggies up by two. On the Ichabods next offensive possession Williams followed his missed jump shot with a game tying 2-pointer from the top of the key. With 8.7 seconds to play the Aggies had the final shot, but the Ichabods forced an air ball, sending the game into overtime with the teams tied at 53.
A 3-pointer by Williams and a 2-pointer by Paul Byers, sophomore forward, staked Washburn to a quick five point overtime lead. The Aggies hit two 3-pointers in the final minute slicing Washburn’s lead to 62-60. The Aggies, however, were forced to foul and two free throws sealed the Washburn victory 64-60.
“I got a little tired during this stretch,” said Chipman. “It was tough with five games in eight days. Twelve-hour bus rides, a flight to Vegas and back, no rest, no practice, and trying to play these games. We looked like a team that has not practiced in a while.”
The Ichabods were lucky to escape making only nine of 27 shots from the field in the second half, while allowing the Aggies to shoot 54 percent from the field in the second half. Williams led the team in scoring with 14 points, hitting three 3-pointers. Bolden led the way for the Aggies scoring 23 points and grabbing five rebounds.
Washburn will travel to Cameron for a rematch Dec. 16. Washburn’s next home game will tip off 7:30, Saturday, Dec. 9, against Missouri Western.