Ichabods to invade Hughes for home finale

Junior running back Freddie Colbert goes airborne for extra yardage during the Lions 31-26 home win over the University of Central Missouri Oct. 21.

Mitsumasa Misaki

Junior running back Freddie Colbert goes airborne for extra yardage during the Lion’s 31-26 home win over the University of Central Missouri Oct. 21.

Hobie Brown

Once again, the Missouri Southern football Lions hope to bounce back from a loss as they host the defending MIAA Champion Washburn Ichabods for a 2 p.m. kickoff tomorrow at Fred G. Hughes Stadium.

“The defending conference champs roll in, and if we can beat them, it’s like the trip to Hays (Kan.) never happened,” said head coach Bart Tatum.

Tomorrow’s game is also the final home game for the Lions’ seniors.

“I hope to not be too emotional. It’s my final game in Fred G. Hughes Stadium,” said senior cornerback Moses Manga.

The Lions lead the series against the Ichabods, 20-15-1. Southern’s last win against Washburn came at Hughes Stadium in 2002, a 52-28 victory. Last year, the Ichabods handed the Lions a 49-35 loss in Topeka, and have won seven of the last eight meetings.

The Lions look to return to the win column after dropping a strong defensive contest against Fort Hayes State University. The Tigers (1-8, 1-6) picked up their first win of the season and in their MIAA existence due to six turnovers by the Lions (4-5, 2-5).

“We’re all competitors,” Tatum said. It’s a team game, and it was a team loss. The offense played more of a part in regards of all the mistakes we made and our inability to be productive. The six turnovers had a lot to do with that.”

As with any team sport, the coaches take the ultimate responsibility.

“It’s a coaching deal too,” Tatum said. “We made some adjustments that we probably shouldn’t of made; tried to do to a little too much new with the new faces out on the field.”

On the heels of earning MIAA Player of the Week honors, sophomore quarterback Adam Hinspeter threw for only 144 yards, completing 20 of his 34 pass attempts. He also was intercepted four times.

Junior receiver Colin Bado came into the game needing just four receptions to tie the Southern single-season mark and in the third quarter Bado collected two separate passes of nine yards from Hinspeter to tie and break the record set by DeMarcus Mathes in 2004. Bado added four more receptions, nine in all, for 74 this season.

Defensively for the Lions, sophomore middle linebacker Jared Brawner had a career-high 11 tackles. Junior defensive tackle Kyle Mayden had 10 tackles and 1.5 sacks. Another freshman, free safety Kellen Anderson contributed to the defensive effort with nine tackles and a half a sack.

The Lions will wrap up the 2006 season on the road Nov. 11 at Emporia State University.