TOPEKA, Kan. -- The No. 15-ranked Washburn Ichabods scored 21 poitns in the final two minutes of the game but it wasn't enough as the No. 22-ranked Missouri Western Griffons held on for a 34-31 win. Washburn will wrap up the regular season next week in Emporia against the Hornets.
Washburn trailed 27-10 with 4:19 to play in the game after a John Schmiemeir 36-yard field goal, but needed only eight plays and 2:15 off the clock as the Ichabods cut the lead to 27-17 after Joel Piper hit Tore' Hurst for a 5-yard score with two minutes to play in the game.
After an Ichabod onside kick failed, Missouri Western's Raphael Spencer scored on a 47-yard run putting the Griffons back in front 34-17 with 1:51 to play. Washburn cut the lead back to 10 when Piper connected withDaJuan Beard on his second touchdown pass of the day with 1:27 left cutting the lead back to 10 at 34-24. Beard finished with a school-record-tying 13 catches for 182 yards - both career-highs for Beard.
Again Washburn was unsuccessful on the onside kick attempt, but they held the Griffons to punt. The Ichabods then marched 80 yards in seven plays using 36 seconds off the clock when Piper connected withMark Fancher for his fourth touchdown pass of the day with 28 seconds to play.
The Griffons recovered the ensuing onsides kick and took a knee to wrap up the game and the 34-31 win.
The Griffons took the early lead with 2:50 to play in the first quarter taking a 7-0 lead, but the Ichabods came right back on the next drive tying the game when Beard pulled down a 18-yard touchdown pass. The Griffons took a 17-7 lead into the break, but it could have been more except Cameron Jackson blocked a Western field goal attempt right before the half.
Piper finished with career-highs of 26 completions, 39 attempts, four touchdown passes and 343 yards. Beard finished with the 13 catches for 182 yards and two scores. Cody Heiman had 52 yards on the ground on nine carries. Defensively Shay Wooten had 12 tackles with nine solo stops and Bryce Atagi had 10 tackles with seven solo stops.
Washburn finished with 416 total yards and 343 passing yards total.