Washburn men’s basketball notches two MIAA conference wins

Trevor Beurman

The men’s basketball team turned a corner Wednesday and Saturday, securing two wins toward their 2-0 current conference record.

With a slow start to the regular season, the Ichabods were looking like a team with major potential, but they weren’t performing to the best of their abilities.

All that was answered Wednesday and Saturday against the Tigers of Fort Hays State University and the Lopers of University of Nebraska at Kearney, respectively. First, the Ichabods took on the Tigers to start the MIAA conference season.

This game would have a first half of runs. In fact, the majority of the runs would come in the first half on both sides with the Tigers owning a run of 8-0, and Washburn battling back with a 14-4 run to get back on top with 4:56 left to play in the first half per wusports.com.

After an electric first half, the scoring would cool and both teams would struggle to find the basket, neither team would score until the 16:51 mark. Washburn would finally answer with a three pointer by Cameron Wiggins, earning a 35-24 lead.

The runs would continue, however, and Washburn would lose their lead and then regain it continuously throughout the second half. The lead would go in their favor in the final stretch as Washburn would win by 11 and secure their first conference win with a final score of 69-58.

For their second win at home Washburn would take number five in a row against the University of Nebraska at Kearney Lopers, winning by seven with a final score of 78-71. The leaders for the Ichabods would be Isaac Clark and Brady Skeens.

“I felt like we played a really good game, overall it was a little sloppy, but we played great on the defensive end,” Skeens said.

The game would be nothing short of an offensive shootout, but ultimately Washburn’s defense stepped up to end up with a win. It would also be a game of great physicality, with a total of 49 fouls from both teams and 58 free throws.

“Our team defense was definitely excellent, they have a lot of scorers,” Javion Blake said.

Up next for the men’s basketball team is another conference game against Lindenwood University at 3:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 16 in Lee Arena. The Ichabods look to improve to 3-0 in conference and 8-3 overall against the 7-2 Lions.