Washburn defeats Benedictine in final tune-up before MIAA play

TOPEKA, Kan. (WU Sports) — Fronted by four players with double-figure points the Washburn women’s basketball team handled Benedictine Monday evening as it rolled to a 73-52 victory to extend its win streak to four games and give Ron McHenry win No. 395.

With the exception of a short stretch during the opening period, the Ichabods (6-2) dictated the tempo shooting over 50 percent for the second consecutive night as they finished at 51.7 percent from the field and 56 of their 73 points coming from the paint.

Washburn was led by Alyxis Bowens who netted 18 points for the second straight outing. In addition to her game-high total, Bowens also tallied three steals and pulled down five rebounds while completing 9 of 13 from the floor. Erika Lane registered 15 points, while Erin Dohnalek and Jharian Bowen followed with 14 and 11 points, respectively. Lane also finished with a game-high six boards and was credited with three steals. Dohnalek collected four rebounds and dished out three assists while Bowen scooped up a trio of missed attempts.

The Ichabods escaped a back-and-forth first quarter that featured four ties and two lead changes as they scored six of the last eight points to take a slim 17-14 advantage into the second period.

During the second, Washburn extended it lead as it sustained lengthy runs thanks in part to a 57.1 field goal percentage while limiting the Ravens to 28.6 percent. Midway through the stanza Washburn took an 11-3 run to push the score to 32-22 for its first double-digit lead of the night. The run was sparked by a three-point play from Felisha Gibbs as was sent to the line after being fouled with a drive to the basket. Gibbs finished with nine points.

Benedictine managed to get back to a single-digit margin before the half but it did not last long as three straight buckets during the last two minutes allowed Washburn to claim a 40-28 advantage into the break.

Behind an 8-0 spurt WU took a 48-28 lead as it quickly pushed the difference to 20 during the opening five minutes of the second half. For the remainder of the period, the Ichabods see-sawed in and out of a 20-point cushion.

After trailing by as much as 24 during the third, Benedictine narrowed the Ichabod spread to 14 behind a 10-0 run as it brought the score to 59-45 midway through the fourth. A late rally by the Ravens would not be in the cards however as Washburn again built a 20-plus point margin which it held onto till the final buzzer.

Washburn will open its MIAA schedule on Wednesday when it travels to in-state rival Fort Hays State for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.

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