The author h-bombed on this one. I’ve made my share of spelling mistakes, so I can empathize. But I must emphasize: It should be emphatic.
The h is present, but like a mini-bar at an A.A. meeting, it’s out of place. It’s gone down the wrong path, giving us empathic instead of emphatic.
An empathic step would be one characterized by empathy, the understanding of another’s feelings. That wasn’t the case here. The Huskies took a step marked by forcefulness and decisiveness. They displayed no empathic emotions during their emphatic victory. Take no prisoners, Huskies! Put an emphasis on winning!