Lions open MIAA slate at Washburn

Nothing like a last-second loss to open a season. When the Lions faced Harding University Saturday, they were in position to win the game until the last two minutes.

“We dominated time of possession but we didn’t get the ball in the end zone and that’s the name of the game,” Head Coach Bart Tatum said. “We played a very physical game on both sides of the ball. I don’t think all was lost in Harding, we just didn’t score enough.”

Daniel Thompson scored both of Southern’s touchdowns but a 56 yard drive, capped by the game-winning score through the air by Harding sent the Lions home with two weeks to reflect on their season-opening loss.

Tomorrow, they will begin their conference schedule against Washburn, in Topeka. “We’re focused on the MIAA and our conference opponents coming at us,” Tatum said. The Lions hope their unusual bye week will help them to be fully rested to take on the Ichabods.

Although they finished last year with a pedestrian record of 6-5, conference coaches expect Washburn to be much improved. New Mexico Highlands University found that out last week when they came to Topeka and were greeted with an 82-point barrage for a Washburn school record.

“It shows there’s something to prove,” David Benham, senior defensive lineman said. “They’re going to try to score that on our defense.”

“That’s very impressive, I don’t care who you’re playing, where you’re playing,” Tatum said. “82 points is 82 points.”

In their only other game of the season, the Ichabods defeated Colorado School of Mines.

Clearly, the Lions would love nothing more than to curb the enthusiasm of Washburn’s undefeated start to the season, however after losing to a Harding team which is not expected to make much noise, they will have their work cut out for them.

Sophomore quarterback Collin Howard had a fumble and managed only 161 yards passing in his collegiate debut as a starter.