Joplin, Mo. -- The Missouri Southern men's basketball program will look to stop a four-game losing streak when the Lions travel to Topeka, Kan. to take on the Washburn Ichabods, Thursday evening at 7:30 pm inside Lee Arena.
The Lions Last Time Out (9-8, 4-5 MIAA):The Missouri Southern men's basketball team shot 31 percent from the floor, while Northeastern State shot 50 percent and the Lions fell to the RiverHawks, 73-54 today at the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center. The Lions (9-8, 4-5 MIAA) were led in scoring by 18 points and 11 rebounds from Jordan Talbert. He shot 7-14 from the field and 4-6 from the free-throw line. Cameron Cornelius scored a career-high 14 points on 3-7 shooting and 8-10 from the free-throw line. Marquis Addison added nine points. Northeastern State (14-4, 7-3 MIAA) shot 48 percent in the first half and 52 percent in the second half as the RiverHawks led for nearly the entire game. Jermaine Bransford scored 20 points and added 17 rebounds, while Bryton Hobbs and Marcus Sheppard scored 12 points each. The Lions scored the game's first point on a jumper from Addison with 19:11 left. Sheppard scored on a three for NSU the next trip down and the RiverHawks would lead from there on out. The lead reached as much as 14 points in the first half and 24 points in the second half.
The Ichabods Last Time Out (12-4. 5-3 MIAA): The No. 24 Washburn Ichabods held off a late charge by the Lindenwood Lions leaving Hyland Arena with a 66-63 win. Washburn will now start a four-game home stand starting with Missouri Southern on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.The Ichabods (12-4, 5-3 MIAA) led by 10 at 56-46 with 5:41 to play before the Lions used a 16-8 run to cut the Ichabod lead back to two at 62-60 with 15 seconds to play after a pair of free throws by Alex Bazzell. Will McNeill hit back to back free throws to put Washburn back up four with 11 seconds remaining. After a miss by Lindenwood (12-5, 5-4 MIAA), Christian Ulsaker was fouled and hit both free throws to go up 66-60. Bazzell hit a 3-pointer before the clock ran out trimming the Ichabod lead in half but it wasn't enough as Washburn held on for the win.
The Coaches: In his 24th season as head coach at Missouri Southern, Robert Corn has guided the Lions to 19 Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Postseason Tournament berths (14 straight) and four trips to the NCAA Division II Tournament. The 1999-00 Division II Bulletin National Coach of the Year, he holds a career record of 384-290 (.570) at Southern, and is the winningest head coach in Lions basketball history. A 1978 graduate of Southern, he has led Southern to eight 20-win seasons. His 1999-2000 team went 30-3 and advanced to the NCAA-II Elite Eight semifinals. Corn is fifth on the all-time MIAA wins list and third among active MIAA coaches. He is a three-time MIAA Coach of the Year winner, including a unanimous selection in 2010-11.
Washburn Coach Bob Chipman is the elder statesman among MIAA basketball coaches and is the winningest coach among the active conference mentors. The Kansas State graduate (1973), now in his 34th year as the Ichabods' head coach, has compiled a record of 733-230. Chipman-coached teams sport a record of 42-24 against the Lions.
The Series: Washburn holds a 46-26 lead in the series, but Southern has won 11 out of the last 14 games. Washburn leads 17-15 in games played in Joplin and holds a 28-8 vs. MSSU in Topeka. The Lions lead 2-1, on neutral floors.The Lions have had few winning streaks in the series. The longest, five games, spanned the years of 2007-09. The Ichabods won 11 straight from Febuary 1984 through Feburary 1989. Missouri Southern's most convincing victory was 24 points, 89-65 on February 12, 1983. Washburn's largest victory margin was 38 points, 94-56, and came on the same date just five years later.