The Washburn Ichabods scored on their first seven possessions of the afternoon while racking up the second-highest total yards in program history in a 57-41 win over Nebraska-Kearney. The win was the third in a row for the Ichabods as they finished the regular season 6-5.
The Ichabods took the opening possession and scored in seven plays marching 75 yards capped by a 49-yard touchdown pass from Mitch Schurig to Collin Wilson staking the Ichabods to a 7-0 lead with 12:09 to play in the first quarter.
After forcing a punt on the UNK first possession, Washburn used a 22-yard pass competition from Schurig to James Letcher, Jr., and a 59-yard yard rush around the left side to the UNK 6-yard line and finished off by Jace Williams’ first career rushing touchdown out of the wildcat as the Ichabods went up 14-0.
The Ichabods forced another UNK punt and then marched 80 yards in nine plays capped by a Taylon Peters’ 33-yard scamper for his seventh touchdown of the season with one second to play in the first quarter as Washburn outgained UNK 245 to 71 in the first quarter collecting 10 first downs compared to five for the Lopers.
Nebraska-Kearney cut the lead to 21-7 with a 10-play, 75-yard drive with 11:38 to go in the first half on a 3-yard run by Dayton Sealey.
After the score by the Lopers, Washburn needed only four plays to score again as Willis raced 59 yards for a touchdown with 9:27 to play in the half finishing off the 70-yard drive.
The Lopers responded with a 75-yard drive of their own going seven plays cutting the Ichabod lead back to 28-14 with 6:32 to play in the first half.
Washburn returned serve with its fifth touchdown on its fifth possession of the first half when Williams rushed for his second touchdown of the day on a 31-yard run up the middle finishing off a seven-play, 55-yard drive.
The Ichabods held the Lopers on fourth down at the WU 24 and then marched 77 yards in four plays on a 54-yard pass reception by Peters, an 18-yard run by Peters and then a 5-yard touchdown pass from Schurig to Williams who scored his third touchdown of the afternoon as Washburn went up 41-14 right before the half. In the first half, the Ichabods have 274 rushing yards, 178 passing yards tallying 452 total yards while holding UNK to 248 overall.
Starting the second half, the Lopers were held on a fourth down attempt at the Ichabod 21 and then Washburn used 6:20 off the clock on a 13-play, 79-yard drive on a 3-yard run by Williams. It was his third rushing touchdown and his fourth overall as the Ichabods pushed the lead to 48-14.
On the ensuing drive, the Lopers used a quick four-play, 75-yard drive capped by a Dayton Sealey 33-yard touchdown run cutting the lead to 48-21 with 4:57 to play in the third quarter.
After the Ichabods were stopped on a fourth down conversion attempt with 1:36 to go ending the Ichabods seven-for-seven on scoring drives, Kevin Neal, Jr., picked off a UNK pass returning the ball back to the Ichabods.
The Ichabods then drove 76 yards in eight plays as senior offensive lineman Kyle Hinton scored on a tackle eligible 8-yard touchdown pass from Schurig to put Washburn up 55-21 with 12:33 to go in the game.
UNK scores on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Davis to trimming the Washburn lead to 55-28 with 9:15 to go in the game and the onside kick attempt by the Lopers sailed out of bounds and Washburn took over at the WU 45, however the Ichabods were forced to punt for the first time on the afternoon and UNK took over at its own 49-yard line with 6:49 to play.
The Lopers scored with 2:54 to go cutting the lead to 55-35 and after a WU turnover on a fumble, the Lopers scored to cut the lead to 55-41, but the PAT attempt by the Lopers was blocked and Alvin Houston scooped it up and returned it for a 2-point defensive PAT – the first in program history as the Ichabods ran out the clock with the 57-51 win.
Schurig finished 20 of 23 passing for 314 yards and three touchdowns completing 87 percent of his passes. Willis had nine carries for 154 yards averaging 17.1 ypc and Williams had five carries for 48 yards and the three touchdowns. Wilson had four catches for 15 yards and one score.
Defensively, the Ichabods were led by Kevin Neal, Jr. with seven tackles and an interception and Grant Bruner had seven tackles with two tackles for loss.
Washburn finished with 343 yards on the ground on 46 attempts while holding the Lopers to 272 yards on the ground, under their season average of 344 yards per game. Overall the Ichabods had 657 yards of total offense averaging 9.4 yards per play – the second highest total in school history.
Washburn was 11 of 14 on third down conversions while holding the Lopers to 5 of 11 on third down.