SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – The Augustana women’s and men’s basketball teams hosts Minnesota State and Concordia-St. Paul in their regular-season home finale weekend inside the Sanford Pentagon. Friday’s game vs. MSU is slated for 5:30 p.m. for the women and 7:30 p.m. for the men. Saturday’s contest against CSP is set for 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
The NSIC South Division clashes are vital in the hopes of hosting a first round NSIC Tournament contest for Augustana women as they sit in fifth place. The Mavericks are in fourth place while the Golden Bears are tied with the Vikings in fifth place.
Augustana men are jockeying for position in the NSIC standings, staring at Minnesota State. The Vikings are two games behind the Mavericks (and Winona State) for third place in the NSIC South Division standings, where the top four teams host the first round of the NSIC Tournament.
Friday marks the first “Paint the Pentagon Pink” event for Augustana basketball. Fans will have the opportunity to purchase pink Augustana basketball t-shirts, participate in chuck-a-duck to help raise funds for Team Edith, where 100 percent of funds raised goes to breast cancer care and research.
Saturday is the final regular-season home game of the season. Prior to the game, this year's senior class will be honored. Saturday also marks the annual alumni game as we welcome back basketball alumni to Sioux Falls for the weekend.
The Minnesota State women are one game ahead of the Vikings in the NSIC South with a 10-8 league record and are 13-9 overall. The Mavericks have gone 4-2 over the last three weekends, winning two, losing two and finally sweeping last weekend with wins over Minnesota Crookston (89-68) and Bemidji State (84-62). No Maverick reaches the double-digit point plateau as Kirstin Klitzke is the team leader at 9.9 points per game.
Series History: Augustana leads 49-29
The Maverick men are 11-7 in the NSIC, tied for third place in the South Division while holding a 13-11 overall record. Minnesota State swept last weekend with a 93-90 win over Minnesota Crookston and an 87-60 rout of Bemidji State. Cameron Kirksey, the South Division Preseason Player of the Year, leads MSU at 16.9 points per game while shooting at a 48.1 percent clip. Three others join him in double-figure scoring with Ryland Holt at 14.3, Kevin Krieger with 11.4 and Corvon Seales with 10.1 points per game.
Series Record - Minnesota State leads, 64-58
The Golden Bears
The Golden Bear women enter the weekend with a 9-9 NSIC record and 12-12 overall record prior to playing Wayne State Friday night. CSP is coming off a weekend sweep of Bemidji State and Minnesota Crookston and has won three of four after dropping five-straight contests. Riley Wheatcraft leads the team with 13.7 points per outing while Sidney Wentland tallies 12.5 points per game. Sydney Schultz leads the squad with 5.3 rebounds per game while she shoots at a 57.7 percent clip for 8.8 points per contest.
Series History: Augustana leads 17-13
Concordia-St. Paul’s men’s team enters the weekend in seventh place of the NSIC South with a 5-13 league mark and 7-15 overall. The Golden Bears snapped an eight-game losing streak with a 92-81 win over Minnesota Crookston last Saturday. Six players scored in double figures led by Max Keefe with 23. For the season, Jordan Coblin leads CSP with 16.7 points per game while Cody Carlson tallies 12.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per touting. Coblin is second in the NSIC with 4.9 assists per game.
Series Record - Augustana leads, 23-5
Augustana women are 13-9 on the season while holding a 9-9 mark in league play. The Vikings are coming off their first back-to-back losses since the turn of the decade after dropping last weekend’s contests at Minnesota Duluth and St. Cloud State.
As she has since the Vikings lost Vishe’ Rabb to injury, Abby Hora leads the Vikings in scoring at 12.2 points per game. She also leads AU with 2.3 assists per game. In NSIC only action, Hannah Mitby averages 10.1 points per outing and has recorded 33 assists. The Vikings have three of the league’s top seven players in steals, led by Hana Beyer at 2.1. Hora grabs 2.0 steals per game while Mitby’s average works out to 1.7.
Augustana men are 14-10 on the season while holding a 9-9 NSIC record. The Vikings are coming off a weekend split with Minnesota Duluth and St. Cloud State. After having the Bulldogs slip past them on Friday, the Vikings came out red-hot against the Huskies for an 81-58 win. Trying to get out of a shooting slump that has plagued it the last couple of weeks, Augustana shot 59 percent from the field in the win.
Sophomore Matt Todd, owner of two 30-point games this year, leads the Vikings at 13.4 points per game. Junior Tyler Riemersma is just behind with 13.3 points per outing while he also tallies 10.4 rebounds per game. Riemersma is the only player in the NSIC this year to average a double-double. In fact, Riemersma is in a class of his own, ranking sixth in the nation with 250 rebounds and second in NCAA Division II with 4.6 offensive rebounds per game.
One Last Thing
Augustana is set to celebrate Senior Day on Saturday, celebrating the careers of Hana Beyer, Danni Honner, Abby Hora and McKenzee Zilverberg. The four players helped Augustana win a school-record 29 games in 2018, won an NSIC Regular Season Championship, NSIC Tournament Championship and helped the Vikings advance to the Sweet 16 of the 2018 NCAA Tournament.
Sophomore Dylan LeBrun has come on strong over the past seven games averaging a team-high 17 points over the span. He is shooting the ball at 47.3 percent while tallying a 46.7 percent clip from 3-point range. Shooting the ball well, he also dishes the ball well with a team-best 18 assists over the same span. This past weekend he torched St. Cloud State for 26 points, including six made 3-point field goals. For the whole weekend, he shot 53.8 percent from the field while averaging 18 points.