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No. 4 Augustana pulls away to defeat No. 6 MSUM in men's basketball

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - The Augustana men's basketball team's historic season continues to edge closer to bearing hardware, as the fourth-ranked Vikings asserted themselves as the kings of the conference hill with a convincing 97-80 win over No. 6 Mi...

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The Augustana men’s basketball team’s historic season continues to edge closer to bearing hardware, as the fourth-ranked Vikings asserted themselves as the kings of the conference hill with a convincing 97-80 win over No. 6 Minnesota State Moorhead on Saturday night in front of 3,867 fans.

It was Augie’s school-record 16th consecutive win, and gave them wins over both of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference’s other heavyweights (they split with MSU-Mankato). It puts Augie (23-1, 17-1 NSIC) in the driver’s seat for the outright NSIC regular-season title and increases their odds of hosting the Central Region tournament.

And while Vikings players are cognizant of all that, it seemed as though the biggest thing they took from this one was bragging rights. Despite their winning streak, Augie has still managed to conjure up a chip for their collective shoulder, and it drove them to win an emotional and intense contest in this one.

“It still kind of feels like we’re the underdog. It really does,” said junior forward Casey Schilling. “I don’t know if people are just waiting for our streak to end or what, but everyone I talked to seemed to think this weekend was going to be too much for us or something. Well we feel like we’re a pretty good team, and this was a chance for us to prove just what we’re capable of.

“(Moorhead) is really good, and they played well, hit some big, big shots,” Schilling added. “But I think our length bothered them, and bottom line, we didn’t want to let them come in to our place and beat us.”

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The Dragons have established themselves as a strong shooting team in the league, but Augie figured to be the stronger and more physical team inside. Moorhead made 10 3s and was especially hot early in the second half, but they ultimately didn’t shoot quite as well as they typically have this season, and that, coupled with Augie’s dominance in the paint, put this one firmly in the Vikings’ favor.

Dan Jansen had 28 points and 11 rebounds and Schilling had 27 points and 12 boards, with those two combining for nine offensive rebounds, two more than Moorhead grabbed. Overall, the Vikings enjoyed a 39-27 edge on the glass in a game where both teams shot 52 percent from the floor. Augie wasn’t very good defensively by any real measure, but they attacked the basket relentlessly on offense, with Jansen and Schilling shooting a combined 22-for-36 from the floor and the Vikings outscoring Moorhead 17-8 at the line.

“We wanted to get the ball in the post – we knew Casey would be stronger than their guy and that I should be able to do some things, too,” Jansen said. “We played real physical, attacked, and got a ton of boards and that gave us a lot of extra possessions.”

Isaac Sevlie had 17 points for the Dragons (25-2, 16-2), while Tyler Vaughn had 15 points and seven boards and Riewer 15 points, six rebounds and five assists (with five turnovers).

MSUM: Sevlie 6-12 5-6 17, Riewer 6-9 2-2 15, Vaughn 6-10 0-0 15, Lien 6-11 0-0 14, Williams 2-5 1-2 5, Nelson 2-3 0-0 6, Bingham 2-4 0-1 5, Songolo 1-5 0-0 3, Kretchman 0-0 0-1 0, Holt 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 31-60 8-12 80.

A: Jansen 10-19 4-5 28, Schilling 12-17 1-3 27, Spencer 5-10 4-5 16, Richter 5-12 2-2 14, Beyer 0-1 2-2 2, Schaefer 2-4 3-4 9, Weisbeck 0-0 1-2 1, Huisken 0-2 0-0 0, Odegaard 0-1 0-0 0, Saugstad 0-0 0-0 0, Asmus 0-0 0-0 0, Heitmann 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 34-66 17-23 97.

Half: A 48, MSUM 43. 3-point goals: MSUM 10-27 (Vaughn 3-5, Lien 2-5, Nelson 2-3, Riewer 1-3, Bingham 1-3, Songolo 1-5, Sevlie 0-1, Williams 0-1, Holt 0-1), A 12-27 (Jansen 4-8, Richter 2-5, Spencer 2-4, Schaefer 2-4, Schilling 2-3, Huisken 0-2, Odegaard 0-1). Total fouls: MSUM 21, A 11. Rebounds: MSUM 27 (Vaughn 7), A 39 (Schilling 12). Assists: MSUM 14 (Riewer 5), A 17 (Spencer 9). Steals: MSUM 6 (Lien 2), A 6 (Schilling 3). Turnovers: MSUM 13, A 11. A: 3,867.

Related Topics: MOORHEAD
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