The crowd blacked out the stands while the Lady Hornets basketball team came out on top, 61-48, in their victory against the rival Lady Blues of Washburn.
“I felt good about our defensive performance,” said Jory Collins, head coach. “We gave up eight fast break points in the first half, and I don’t think we gave up any in the second half. That was the difference in the first game.”
Each team juggled the lead throughout the first half but never brought down the intensity. The Hornets did not start off shooting well from the field, missing their first five attempts and continued to shoot poorly but were able to get multiple attempts through good rebounding.
“I am always confident – I like our team,” Collins said. “If our team plays like that, we are capable of beating anybody, and it is my job to get them to play like that.”
After being down as much as seven points, Emporia State closed the gap, ending the first half down by just one point, 26-25. Merissa Quick, sophomore forward, had a solid first half with seven points, eight rebounds and two assists.
ESU quickly took the lead in the second half with a three-pointer from Laura Patrick. Patrick quickly followed that up with another three-pointer, as the Hornets took off, gaining an eight point lead in the first four minutes of the second half.
“My teammates were just finding me right at the right moment – when I was open enough to shoot it so I was letting it fly,” Patrick, a junior accounting major, said. “This was a lot better, (and) having our home crowd behind us helped a lot.”
ESU sailed their way through the second half, leading by more than 20 points. The Lady Blues played hard until the very end and were able to get a few points back, but the Hornets still came out on top 61-48.
This was the Hornets’ last home game this season, and seniors Rachel Hanf and Jocelyn Cummings were honored before the game.
“It’s really exciting to beat your rival on your senior night,” Hanf, a senior business major, said. “You can’t ask for anything more than that.”