Vikings Crash Boards To Top Titans

Augustana College (Ill.) grabbed 25 more rebounds to hold off the UW-Oshkosh men's basketball team, 67-63, on Thursday (Nov. 29) in Rock Island, Ill.

The Vikings improved to 5-0 using a 47-22 advantage on the boards, including 20 offensive rebounds on 33 missed shots. Ben Ryan totaled 13 rebounds and 12 points, as Brandon Kunz added 16 points and 11 boards.

UW-Oshkosh (1-3) relied on the three-pointer, hitting 11-of-25 deep attempts (44 percent). Jade Royston (Jr. • Wisconsin Dells) led the team with 20 points, while Cory Nickel (Jr. • Waupun) buried five triples on his way to 15 points and six rebounds. The Titans also received 11 points from Dylan Wurtz (Jr. • Kimberly) and four steals by Sean Wise (Sr. • Wautoma).

Kunz tallied a jumper and three free throws in the opening minutes to give Augustana a 7-3 lead. A pair of hoops from Ryan made it a 15-7 cushion after five minutes of play.

Nickel drained two shots behind the arc as UW-Oshkosh posted an 11-2 scoring run. After a Wurtz jump shot with 11:42 on the clock, the Titans went ahead 18-17.

UW-Oshkosh led for the last nine minutes of the half, using a three-pointer and two foul shots from Royston. Kevin Schlitter's basket just before halftime cut the Vikings' deficit to 30-29.

Scoring was hard to come by early in the second period. Paul Volkman (So. • Arlington Heights, Ill.) nailed a mid-range jumper to tie it at 41. Kunz then grabbed an offensive rebound and put it back in to take the lead. Augustana would remain in front the rest of the night.

A Kunz free throw extended the margin to 57-50, but the Titans didn't go away. Wurtz buried two deep jumpers to make it 59-58 with one minute left. Danielius Jurgutis responded with a three-point play that put the contest out of reach.

UW-Oshkosh totaled 43 percent shooting (22-51) from the field and 80 percent accuracy at the foul line (8-10). The Vikings finished at 39 percent (21-54) from the field, 7 percent (1-14) from three-point land and 73 percent on free throws (24-33).

Augustana also received 15 points and two steals from Brandon Thompson and 13 points by Schlitter.

The Titans take on Bethany Lutheran College (Minn.) on Saturday (Dec. 1) in Kolf Sports Center.