EMPORIA, Kan. — The seventh-ranked Lady Blues rallied from two sets down, but fell 3-2 (23-25, 21-25, 25-18, 28-26, 13-15) to No. 8 Emporia State on Friday night at White Auditorium. Washburn is now 0-3 in five set matches this season, all against ranked opponents.
Washburn (23-3, 7-3 MIAA) dropped the first two sets of the night before rallying to force a fifth and deciding set. The Lady Blues trailed 21-19 and 22-20 in the fourth set, but scored three straight points to take the lead and eventually took the set 28-26 to force set five.
The Hornets (21-2, 8-1 MIAA) jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the final set. Washburn scored five of the next six points to tie the match at 6. ESU was able to take small leads throughout the final set, but Washburn kept answering, tying the set on five different occasions before the Hornets got the win with the final two points of the match.
Sophomore middle hitter Mollie Lacy led four Lady Blues in double figure kills, tying her career-high with 18. Sophomore rightside hitter Breanna Lewis had 13 kills, while junior outside hitter Ashley Shepard and freshman outside hitter Hillary Hughes each had 11.
Senior setter Kate Hampson had a match-high 56 assists to go along with 15 digs. Junior libero Molly Smith was tied for the match-high with 24 digs.
Brittney Miller led Emporia State with a match-high 20 kills.
The Lady Blues return to action on Tuesday when they host Northwest Missouri State at 7 p.m. in the Think Pink game. All fans are encouraged to wear pink to show support and raise awareness for breast cancer.