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Augustana Observer

Viking Basketball holds out Calvin

Seniors, Pierson Wofford (left) and Roman Youngblut (right) scream in happiness after their big win Senior, Micah Martin, for the Augustana Men’s Basketball team goes up for the backwards grab in their game against the Calvin Knights on November 16, 2019 in the Roy J. Carver Center for Physical Education. The Vikings won the game 70-67.

Saturday night, the Augustana Vikings took on the Calvin Knights in a non-conference matchup that ended in a 70-67 win for the Vikings.
The non-conference matchup started out with the Vikings down in the early going as Calvin took a lead. Calvin’s Isaiah McLaughlin drained multiple three-pointers in the early going to jumpstart the Calvin offense, but the Vikings didn’t let that stop them. 
“[Calvin’s] a very good offensive rebounding team. They’re not very skilled, but what they do is they crash the glass hard and they fight a lot, so our main goal was to go out there and match their energy and intensity,” senior Pierson Wofford said.
Towards the middle of the first half with the help of junior Jacob Pauly, sophomore Justin Bottorff and senior Micah Martin, the Vikings made a comeback and tightened the score to 21-21. 
As the half continued, the packed house at the Carver Center witnessed back-and-forth play as the Vikings went on to take a 36-34 lead into the half.
The Vikings leading scorer after one half of play was Martin who turned in a 13-point performance in the first half. 
“Just being out here able to compete with my really good friends just makes me want to compete even harder every single game,” said Martin.
Coming out of the locker room after half time. Calvin struck first, taking an early second half lead on Augustana. The teams continued to battle, keeping the score tight in the early going of the second half. 
In the middle of the half, Calvin had the lead 52-48, but the Vikings pushed back with Jarrett Tribble stealing the ball and dunking. Then Jack McDonald assisted on Martin dunk giving the Vikings the advantage.
“[The hardest part was] just trying to stay energized the entire time. I was playing a lot of minutes and it was really hard to keep my mind on and focused,” Martin said.
This game, Martin had his career high of 24 points.
“Micah had a hell of a game 24 in 10. That’s incredible numbers for him, and just like that, everybody steps up and does their job,” Wofford said.
Although the Vikings never gave up the lead after taking it with around five minutes left, the last two minutes proved to be eventful. A Bottorff scored gave the Vikings a 67-61 advantage. Calvin picked it up, however, and brought the score within two with 12 seconds left in the game. After an Augustana foul, Calvin had a chance for some free throws but came up empty. 
Tribble came down with the rebound and was fouled with two seconds left in the game, and made one of two free throws to put the game away at a final score of 70-67.
Wofford who finished the day with 18 points, credited the Vikings’ attitude for the victory. 
“Just our relentlessness you know we were down four a couple of times during the game but we just kept fighting,” Wofford said.

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Viking Basketball holds out Calvin