TOPEKA, Kan. – Southwest Baptist led by 17 at halftime and held a double-figure lead nearly the entire second half in an 85-73 win over the Ichabods in the first round of the MIAA postseason tournament.
Washburn, the No. 6 seed in the tournament, ended its season at 16-11 while 11th-seeded SBU improved to 12-15 and will face No. 3 Pittsburg State Thursday in an MIAA quarterfinal.
Taylor Ignoto led Washburn with 21 points as she was 7 of 17 from the field and 5 of 5 from the free throw line. Casyn Buchman scored 17 points and Allyssa Nikkel had a career-high 10 points. She made 3 of 5 field goals and all four free throw attempts. Honor Duvall scored 13 points off the bench. Haley Pfau led Washburn for the first time this year with eight rebounds and she added five points.
Washburn started the game 20 of 20 from the free throw line and ended 24 of 25. The school record for best percentage in a game was a 20 of 20 performance against Central Missouri in 2007.
The Ichabods cut the SBU lead to nine three times in the second half but never got any closer. They made just two field goals the final 10 minutes but were 12 of 13 from the free throw line. They outscored the Bearcats by five in the second half but that wasn’t enough.
Washburn shot 36 percent from the field in the game while SBU was 47 percent. SBU hit 12 3-pointers while Washburn had just five from long range. The Bearcats were nearly as impressive as Washburn at the free throw line with a 15 of 17 performance.
The Ichabods edged SBU in rebounds 37-36 and each team had just five turnovers.
SBU led 13-4 five minutes in and had a 10-point lead at the 12:00 mark. An 11-0 run that started midway through the first half gave the Bearcats their biggest lead of the game, 38-18 with 6:27 to play. Washburn answered with a quick 9-0 run to get within 11 but the Bearcats didn’t let Washburn any closer until the three times in the second half when the Bods were within nine.
Five Bearcats scored in double figures with Brook Duncan leading with 23. She was 8 of 15 from the field with seven 3-pointers. Jacqui Zelenka had a double-double with 21 points and 12 rebounds.