The Augustana Vikings men’s basketball team earned their first win of the season on the road in Winona, MN on Saturday, defeating the St. Mary’s Cardinals by a final of 81-73.
The Cardinals jumped out to an early 7-3 lead, but the Vikings reclaimed the lead and never let it go. They used a 17-4 run to cushion their first-half lead to as many as nine before pushing it to double figures later in the game. St. Mary’s ended the first half with seven straight points to make it a 37-33 game after 20 minutes of action. The Vikings hit nearly 50% of their shots in the opening half while holding the home team to just 37.5%.
St. Mary’s scored the first basket of the second, a three-pointer to narrow the lead to a single point. Augustana roared with a major scoring outburst, using a 25-4 run over the next nine minutes to stretch the lead to its largest of the game at 22. Seven different Vikings notched at least one basket over the span. The Cardinals cut the lead to 10 at the 2:24 mark. The two teams traded baskets to keep it around that margin, with St. Mary’s only getting the score under 10 in the final seconds. Augie shot slightly below their first-half margin with a second half showing of 46.8% but hit 11-13 from the charity stripe to help maintain their lead down the stretch.
Tyler Knuth led the Vikings in scoring with 20 points on 9-12 shooting, while Daniel Carr picked up his second double-double in as many games this season with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Matt Hanushewsky and Matt Hawkins both dominated at the free throw line, winding up with 13 and 12 points, respectively. The Vikings outrebounded the Cardinals 45-28. “We played terrific half-court defense and absolutely dominated the rebounding,” said head coach Tom Jessee. “That is always a great recipe for a road win.”
With the win, Augie moves to 1-1 on the season. Their next game is Saturday, November 19 when they host the Aurora Spartans at the Carver Center. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m.