Emporia State opened scoring with a layup 30 seconds into the game to take an early 2-0 lead. The Hornets held onto the lead until a three-pointer by Jalen Lewis tied the game up at nine with 13:41 on the clock. Emporia answered with a jumper a minute later to retake the lead but two made free throws by Tyler Nelson soon tied the game again at 11 with 12:24 left. The Ichabods took a short lead for about four minutes until the Hornets tied it up at 17 with 8:02 on the clock. From here, Emporia held on to its lead, only letting the Ichabods get within three points in the last seven and a half minutes of the first half. Emporia went on a 22-8 run in that time as the Ichabods trailed the Hornets, 39-25, at halftime.
The Ichabods came in to the second half with more drive, going on a 8-0 run to cut their deficit to six points with 16:18 left on the clock. Washburn continued to fight back and chip away at its deficit, only for Emporia to answer and extend its lead once again. With under five minutes left in the game, the Ichabods went on a 8-0 run to take its first lead of the second half (65-63) thanks to a dunk by Jace Williams with 2:30 left on the clock. The Hornets tied it up at 65 a short 13 seconds later. Washburn regained the lead for good just 15 seconds later as Lewis sank a three-point shot with 2:02 left. As the Hornets attempted to take control again, the Ichabods answered to make sure that didn’t happen. Washburn kept their defense up in the final minute to ensure the 73-70 victory over Emporia State.
Tyler Geiman led the team with 26 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Lewis recorded 13 points and was 4-for-7 from three-point range. Jonny Clausing rounded out the double-digit point leaders with 12 points on the night.
The Ichabods recognized two student-athletes on their Senior Day- Will McKee and Jace Williams. McKee has recorded 330 points and 308 rebounds in his three seasons. McKee will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in finance. Williams currently leads the team with 21 blocks this season and has notched 369 points and 276 rebounds in his four seasons. Williams is majoring in mass media and will be returning for his final season with the Washburn football in the fall.
Jumah’Ri Turner led the Hornets with 24 points, while Austin Downing had a team-high eight assists.
The Ichabods earned the second seed in the MIAA Tournament Championship and will host seventh seed Rogers State in the quarterfinals. The game is set for March 3 at 6 p.m. at Lee Arena in Topeka, Kan.