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Augsburg ends Cobbers season in first round of MIAC tournament

MOORHEAD - On an evening when scoring was scarce, a half-dozen consecutive points proved to give Augsburg enough cushion for success Tuesday. That six-pack of points, which started with a little more than eight minutes to play in the second half,...

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Concordia’s Jenna Januschka scores past Augsburg’s Jenna Orth during the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference women’s basketball playoffs on Tuesday in Moorhead. Carrie Snyder / The Forum

MOORHEAD – On an evening when scoring was scarce, a half-dozen consecutive points proved to give Augsburg enough cushion for success Tuesday.

That six-pack of points, which started with a little more than eight minutes to play in the second half, helped lift the Auggies to a 56-50 victory against Concordia in the quarterfinals of the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference women’s basketball tournament at Memorial Auditorium.

“They made that short little run, and then at that point in time you’re playing catch up, and trying to make things happen.” Cobbers head coach Jessica Rahman said. “Defensively and tempo-wise, I thought they played very well.”

The No. 3 seed in the MIAC tournament, the Cobbers (15-11) had their season end against an Augsburg team they beat by 16 points at home to end the regular season last Saturday. The Auggies (15-11) were the No. 6 seed for the tournament and play at top-seeded St. Thomas on Thursday in the semifinals.

“Our shots just weren’t falling,” said Cobbers senior Erin Januschka, who scored 12 points on 5-for-6 shooting from the floor. “We weren’t working together as well as we did the last time we played them. It just didn’t happen for us.”

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The Cobbers cut the Augsburg lead to 40-39 after junior forward Olivia Johnson scored a 4-point play with 9 minutes, 35 seconds remaining in the second half. The Auggies, however, countered with the next six points, which proved critical. Junior guard Jenna Orth capped that rally with two foul shots that gave Augsburg a 46-39 with 7:00 remaining.

The Cobbers made one final push at the lead in the final five minutes, scoring five consecutive points. Concordia junior Hannah Jeske swished a 3-pointer that cut the Augsburg lead to 50-48 with 3:50 remaining. That’s as close as the Cobbers would get in the closing minutes with Augsburg ending the game on a 6-2 run.

“It wasn’t flowing for either team most of the way,” Januschka said. “We just couldn’t do it this time.”

The Cobbers shot 38 percent (9 of 24) from the field in the second half, and finished with 15 turnovers. Concordia led by as many as three points early in the second half, but never led in the final 13 minutes. Augsburg never led by more than seven points.

“We had a really up-and-down year,” Januschka said. “We had a lot of fun times, and the teammates and coaches made it worth it even though it wasn’t the easiest of years.”

Januschka and senior guard Alley Fisher, who had 10 points, played in their final games for Concordia.

“That’s a hard way to end it, and yet there’s a lot of positive I take away from all the growth I saw happen,” Rahman said. “I thought our senior captains really did a great job leading us.”

AUGSBURG (15-11): Bednar 3-7 1-2 7, Lillquist 5-11 0-2 10, Luger 9-18 0-0 21, Orth 1-5 5-6 7, Fitzgerald 3-9 0-0 8, Sarazine 0-0 0-0 0, Steinhaus 1-2 1-2 3, Anfinson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-52 7-12 56.

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CONCORDIA (15-11): Johnson 1-2 3-3 6, E. Januschka 5-6 2-2 12, Forness 1-4 0-0 2, Jeske 2-5 0-2 6, Fisher 3-14 3-4 10, Walsh 2-6 0-0 4, Peterson 1-2 0-0 2, Savageau 1-2 0-0 3, J. Januschka 2-3 0-0 5, Rosenfeldt 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 18-44 8-11 50.

Half: CC 21, AC 21. 3-point goals: AC 5-14 (Luger 3-9, Fitzgerald 2-5), CC 6-18 (Johnson 1-1, Forness 0-1, Jeske 2-3, Fisher 1-6, Walsh 0-4, Peterson 0-1, Savageau 1-1, J. Januschka 1-1). Total fouls: AC 14, CC 16. Rebounds: AC 33 (Luger 9), CC 28 (Jeske 7). Assists: AC 14 (Luger 5), CC 9 (E. Januschka 3). Steals: AC 9 (Orth 3, Fitzgerald 3), CC 6 (Fisher 2). Turnovers: AC 11 (Luger 4), CC 15 (Fisher 4). A-367.

Related Topics: MOORHEAD
Peterson covers college athletics for The Forum, including Concordia College and Minnesota State Moorhead. He also covers the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks independent baseball team and helps out with North Dakota State football coverage. Peterson has been working at the newspaper since 1996.
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