By TOMMY REZAC
St. Joseph Post
The Missouri Western men's basketball team (11-8) won its third straight game Thursday, as they beat No. 15 Washburn, 81-77, at Lee Arena in Topeka Thursday.
It marks the Griffons' fourth straight win over the Ichabods (14-4) and their first win in Topeka in the regular season since the 2010-11 season.
Thursday's game was also the first time Missouri Western head coach Will Martin was back on the sideline since Feb. 7. Martin tested positive for COVID-19, and had to miss four games.
Missouri Western got off to a terrific start, leading 36-20 with 4:07 left in the first half before Washburn made a 12-0 run to pull within four points, but the Griffons led 39-32 at halftime.
Western came out of the gate and scored the first eight points of the second half to extend their lead to double figures.
Tyrell Carroll made a step back three-pointer with four minutes to play to put Western ahead 72-61, but the Griffons struggled the close the game out due to missed free throws.
Missouri Western went just 6-of-14 down the stretch at the foul line, while Washburn went 6-of-6 from the field and 5-of-7 from the foul line in the final four minutes and only trailed 75-72 with 45 seconds left.
With the shot clock running down, Reese Glover made a fade away three-pointer at the top of the key, putting the lead back up to six points and sealing the upset victory.
Glover finished with 15 points on 5-of-11 from behind the arc, while Carroll scored 14 of his 20 points in the second half and handed out a season-high seven assists.
Will Eames finished with 18 points and nine rebounds. Caleb Bennett added a career-high nine rebounds.
The Missouri Western women's basketball team had its three-game winning streak stopped Thursday as they lost at Washburn, 51-41.
The Griffons fall to 6-12.
Turnovers were a problem for Missouri Western, as they had 13 giveaways in the first 20 minutes.
The Griffons scored the first four points of the second half to pull within 30-25, but that's as close as they got the rest of the way.
The Ichabods led by as many as 15 points in the fourth quarter and Western wasn't able to make a run in the final period, despite holding Washburn scoreless for the final 3/5 minutes.
The Griffons finished with 20 turnovers and they struggled to shoot all night. Missouri Western shot just 34.8% (16-46) from the field, including just 1-of-10 from the three.
Asia McCoy led the Griffons with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Brionna Budgetts added nine points.
Both Missouri Western teams travel to Emporia State on Saturday. The women tip at 5, with the men to follow at 7. Both games will be carried on KFEQ (680 AM, 95.3 FM) with coverage starting at 4:30 p.m.