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November 15, 2008

2008-09 Season - Balanced scoring can't lift women's basketball team to victory

GRINNELL, Iowa – A balanced scoring attack nearly provided Augustana with the lift it needed in the opening game of the 2008-09 women’s basketball season. Four players scored in double figures but it was not enough as the Vikings fell to Coe by a score of 72-66 in the Grinnell Tournament in Grinnell, Iowa.


Freshman Natalie Runge (St. Dominic HS, O’Fallon, Missouri) led the team in scoring with 19 points in her collegiate debut. She hit seven of 13 from the floor and was five of six from the free throw line. Fellow freshman Lani Kasten (Forreston HS, German Valley, Ill.) scored 13, sophomore Jeanelle Strohmaier (Genoa-Kingston HS, Genoa, Ill.) had 12 and junior Kristen Fox (Ottawa Marquette HS, Ottawa, Ill.) dropped in 11.


The Vikings led by as many as eight points (32-24 with 4:34 left) in the first half and eventually took a 33-30 lead into the locker-room at intermission. However, Coe opened the second half with a 9-0 run to take 39-33 lead at the 16:04 mark and Augustana could never get back on top. With 6:04 left the Kohawks led by nine (58-49) but a free throw and a basket by Runge coupled with a pair of charity tosses by Kasten chopped the advantage to four (58-54) with 5:07 to play. The Vikings would get it to within four points on two more occasions but could not get any closer.


Coe showed the same kind of offensive balance as Augustana did. Kayla Waskow led the Kohawks with 15 points but Kayla Lincoln (13), Brittany Norris (12) and Sarah Anciaux (11) all finished the game in double figures.


After shooting .407 (11-27) from the floor in the first half, the Vikings sizzled the nets in the second at a .520 (13-25) clip to finish the game shooting .462. They hit 17 of 20 (.850) from the free throw line with Kasten leading the way by making seven of eight. Runge was five of six and Strohmaier connected on all four of her attempts. The leading rebounder for Augustana was Fox, who hauled in seven.