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December 8, 2010

2010-11 Season - Vikings win battle of 13th-ranked teams

Brian DeSimone scored a career-high 16 points and added three assists, three steals and no turnovers in Augustana's 80-73 win over St. Ambrose Wednesday night.

ROCK ISLAND, Ill. - Behind career highs from Bryant Voiles (Byron HS, Byron, Ill.) and Brian DeSimone (Buffalo Grove HS, Wheeling, Ill.), Augustana won the battle of the Quad-Cities Wednesday night with an 80-73 victory over St. Ambrose at Carver Center. Voiles scored 13 of his career-high 18 points in the first half and DeSimone scored nine of his career-best 16 in the second stanza as the Vikings-ranked 13th in NCAA Division III-defeated the NAIA Division II 13th-ranked Bees. Augustana improves to 5-0, while St. Ambrose falls to 7-2.

 After the Bees' Chris Donnelly opened the scoring with a three-pointer, the Vikings went on a 12-0 run to take a 12-3. Two jumpers by DeSimone and a pair of threes by Voiles fueled the run. Donnelly responded with 11 points over the next five minutes as the Bees bounced back to take their biggest lead of the night, 18-15 with 9:14 left before the half.

 Voiles' three-pointer with 5:06 left in the half put Augustana up 22-20 and they wouldn't trail again. Just before the halftime buzzer, DeSimone took a kick-out from Chris Anderson (West Carroll HS, Mt. Carroll, Ill.) and buried a long three from the left wing to give the Vikings a 37-31 lead at the break.

 On the opening possession of the second half, Donnelly took advantage of a Viking defensive breakdown to get free for a layup, giving him 16 points. However, those would be his last points of the night as Augustana clamped down on him in the second half.

 The Vikings responded with a 21-5 run over the next eight minutes to push the lead to its biggest of the night at 58-38 with 11:20 left. It was still at 15 at the 8:18 mark, but the Bees continued to whittle away and cut it under double digits at 62-53 on a Mike Kennedy jumper with 5:05 remaining.

 Despite Augustana struggling at the free throw line (20 of 31 in the second half), the closest St. Ambrose would get would be 78-73 on a Joe Speth three-pointer with 21 seconds left. Speth finished with a team-high 18 points for the Bees. Two Anderson free throws with 18 seconds left accounted for the final margin.

 Voiles hit five of nine from the field including four of seven from three-point range and added four rebounds and three assists. DeSimone was perfect on four field goal attempts, with two coming from long range, and added six of eight free throws. He had three assists, three steals and no turnovers in 30 minutes.

 Joining the pair in double figures for the Vikings were Anderson with a dozen and Troy Rorer (Bettendorf HS, Bettendorf, Iowa), who came off the bench for 11 points and six rebounds. Sophomore forward Kameron Norton gave the Vikings eight points, seven rebounds and three steals in 15 minutes as well.

 The win was the Vikings' third in a row over the Bees and gives Augustana a 58-34 edge in the all-time series.

 Augustana is back in action on Saturday night when the Buena Vista Beavers come to Carver Center for a rare 6:30 p.m. start.