Augie’s furious comeback comes up short against Bemidji State

Vikings can’t complete 18-point comeback and fall 89-85
Vikings lose to Bemidji 89-85
Published: Jan. 21, 2023 at 11:09 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - The Augustana men’s basketball team nearly overcame an 18-point deficit with less than eight minutes remaining but fell just short in an 89-85 loss to Bemidji State. The contest closed the Viking schedule in the Elmen Center as the remaining three regular season home contests will be in the Sanford Pentagon.

Outside of a 9-8 lead, the Vikings could not grasp the lead while staying within striking distance throughout. That was no more evident than in the final 10 minutes of the contest when AU nearly overcame that 18-point deficit with a 17-4 run.

After John Sutherland sank a 3-point basket for the visitors, Isaac Fink promptly hit a 3-point basket. After a layup from BSU, Fink again sank a 3-point basket to get the momentum rolling in AU’s favor. From there, it was nearly all Augustana, much in thanks to Caden Hinker who scored nine of his season-best 12 points in the run.

With the score sitting at an 81-66 Beaver advantage, Hinker, Ryan Miller and Akoi Akoi went back-to-back-to-back to make it a nine-point ballgame with 2:29 remaining.

After a pair of free throws by Bemidji State, Hinker scored on an old-fashioned 3-point play at the basket as Miller gave him the perfect pass into the post.

After a strong defensive stop, Hinker kept the momentum rolling with a layup and the harm for an 83-77 score with 1:01 remaining. However, this time he missed the free throw but it was corralled by Fink who sent the pass out to Miller for the 3-point basket.

After trading two points for two points, the score sat at 87-82 when Miller hit a 3-point basket with seven seconds remaining. However, the two points were the closest AU would get as Brayden Williams made a pair of free throws for BSU to seal the game at 89-85.

Bemidji State was aided by a season-best 16-made 3-point field goals while making them at a 53.3 percent clip. Augustana shot 47.1 percent from the field for the game while making nine 3-point baskets of its own.

Fink led AU with his second-straight 25-point game while also securing nine rebounds. Miller joined him in the 20s with 21 points while HInker totaled 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting.

Jadan Graves dished a season-best nine assists in the effort while posting just a single turnover.

The Vikings now travel to St. Cloud State and Minnesota Duluth next weekend. On Friday, the Vikings face the Huskies of SCSU at 5:30 p.m. The Bulldogs and Augustana tangle on Saturday at 3:30 p.m.