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December 15, 2009

2009-2010 Season - Two scoring bursts key win over Aurora

Two sustained runs at the end of each half helped lift Augustana to a 61-48 non-conference victory over Aurora on Tuesday, December 15 in the Carver Center. With 10:22 left in the first half the Vikings led by six points (12-6) but closed out the half on a 15-8 run to take an impressive 27-14 lead into the locker room.

Things were a little different to start the second half as Aurora exploded out of the gate behind the offensive production of Brianna Leland. Leland scored the first six point in what would eventually become a 21-5 spurt to give the Spartans a 35-32 lead with 13:38 remaining in the game. Aurora led again by three points, this time with 11:50 to play when Angela Ozanic completed a three point play to make it 37-34.

After a basket by Lani Kasten (Forreston HS, Forreston, Ill.) trimmed the lead to 37-36, sophomore backup point guard Abbi Staples (Sterling HS, Sterling, Ill.) tossed in a three pointer at the 10:24 mark to give Augustana a 39-37 lead. It was an advantage that the home team would not relinquish.

Staples’ bomb ignited an 11-0 run that gave the Vikings a 47-37 lead with 7:36 to play. From the time that Staples put her team into the lead until the final buzzer, Augustana outscored Aurora 25-11.

Kasten led Augustana in scoring with 15 points on six of nine from the floor, including a three pointer, and two of three from the charity stripe. She also hauled in a team high nine rebounds as the Vikings mauled their visitors on the backboards by a count of 51-28. The Vikings collected 16 offensive rebounds in the game.

No other Augustana player besides Kasten was in double figures in scoring but 13 of the 14 players used by head coach Bobbi Endress found the scoring column.

Natalie Runge (St. Dominic HS, O’Fallon, Missouri) had eight rebounds while Dawn Kernich (Mt. Olive HS, Mt. Olive, Ill.) pulled down six.

Aurora was led in scoring by Becky Gifford, who tallied 16 points and grabbed five rebounds. Gwendolyn Smith had nine rebounds for the Spartans and Leland made it into double digits in scoring with 10 points.
With the victory Augustana is now 5-4 on the season while Aurora drops to 2-7. The Vikings will wrap up the pre-Christmas portion of their season with a trip to Cedar Rapids to face Coe on December 19 at 4:00 p.m.