ESU wins Turnpike Tussle over Washburn, await playoff matchup

TOPEKA, Kan., (ESU Athletics) – The #9 Emporia State football team held Washburn to just 137 yards in a 30-3 Hornet victory on Saturday in Topeka. The Hornets have now won a school record ten straight games and are in a position to host their first NCAA Playoff game and the first postseason game of any kind in Welch Stadium since 1989.

Neither team could generate much offense in the first with the two squads combining for just 37 yards of total offense in the opening 15 minutes. The Ichabods got on the board first when they recovered a muffed punt at the Emporia State 18 yard line with 12:44 left in the half. The Hornet defense was able to hold Washburn to a field goal and the Emporia State offense answered with an eight play, 60 yard drive to take the lead. The Hornets scored on a 30 yard pass from Braxton Marstall to Justin Brown on fourth and eight with 8:27 left in the half.

Emporia State went up 10-3 on a 33 yard field goal by Austin Morton with 3:14 left in the half. They made it 17 -3 on a 27 yard pass from Marstall to Mitchell Foote following an Ichabod fumble recovered by Gabe Cleveland.

The Hornets went up 24-3 with 7:27 left in the third quarter on a six yard touchdown from Marstall to Reese Richards, but the story of the quarter was again the Emporia State defense. The Hornets held the Ichabods to just six yards of offense in the third quarter.

Two more field goals by Morton in the fourth quarter, including a career long 49 yarder, gave the Hornets the final margin of 30-3.

Marstall was 16 of 28 for 180 yards and three touchdowns and added 50 yards on 14 rushes. Foote had four catches for 62 yards and a touchdown as eight different receivers pulled in a pass.

Josh Monteagudo and Gabe Cleveland each had 11 tackles and a forced fumble. The Hornets had four sacks with Cleveland getting a career high 1.5 sacks. Kole Schankie had four tackles and his league leading sixth interception.

The Hornets will find out their post season fate on Sunday afternoon during the NCAA Selection Show at 4:00 p.m. There will be a watch party at White Auditorium as part of the final day of the MIAA-GAC Challenge women’s basketball tournament. The #4 Lady Hornets are scheduled to play at 4:00 p.m. as well.

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