CAMROSE, AB - In a wild back-and-forth match-up, the Augustana Vikings found a way against the visiting NAIT Ooks to win 72-64 at Augustana Gym.
With the win, the Viking's win streak improves to three and ties them for first in the North division with Lakeland. Meanwhile, the Ooks lose their season opener and will begin the hunt for their first win of the season.,
Leading the drive for the Vikings was third-year Tegan Mackinnon with 16 points, while teammate Alyssa Banez and Hannah Mitchell both netted 12. Across the court, senior player Aliyah Johnson led all players with 22 points, while fellow fifth-year Aphia Ward had 12 points on the night.
Struggling out of the gate, the Vikings found themselves down 10-5, with NAIT pushing the pace of the game. However, finding their legs near the end of the quarter the Vikings clawed back to take the lead 16-14.
The second quarter started as a defensive battle, with both teams not willing to give any room to their opposition. Mackinnon finally opened the scoring with a shot from beyond the three-point line almost three minutes into the quarter. Remaining a clear battle, the home side went into halftime with a single-point lead, 32-31.
With just 48 seconds left in third, Larissa Stephenson drained a three to give the home squad a 50-47 lead. However the quarter was not done there, NAITs Lucy Wilde was able to break away for a layup to finish to put the Ooks down by just one point heading into the final and deciding frame of play.
Midway through the fourth quarter, Hannah Mitchell shot from beyond the arch gave the Vikings their biggest lead of the game 58-53 before Mackinnon followed up with a three of her own to increase the Viking's lead to eight.
In the final minutes, the Vikings fell into foul trouble leaving the door open for the Ooks to stay in the game from the foul line. However, it was too little too late as the Viking held on to a 72-64 win.
Both teams will meet again tomorrow night in Edmonton, tipping off at 5:00 PM MT. Catch all the action live on ACACTV.