In a game you heard on AM 1480 KAUS, the Austin Packers boys basketball team was looking to get back on the winning track versus Big 9 Conference foe Faribault at Packer Gym Tuesday evening, and in a game that saw the Packers rally back from a 19-point deficit in the first half to take a 1-point lead with 11:51 left in the game, it was the Falcons who had the last answer as they used a game-ending 13-2 run in the final 1:35 to win 74-63.
Austin jumped out to a 6-3 lead early in the first half, but the Falcons, keyed by the play of guards Rashid Ibrahim and Mohammed Madey and 6’9″ sophomore forward Ryan Kreager, who scored 13 of his 19 points in the first half went on a 12-0 run to take a 15-7 lead. The Falcons pushed their lead to as large as 19 at 30-11 before the Packers answered with a 13-4 run of their own to cut the lead to 34-24 at the halftime break.
Austin kept their momentum from late in the first half going forward into the second stanza as they started the half on a 20-9 run to take a 44-43 lead on a 3-pointer from Peyton Ransom with 11:51 to go. The game then see-sawed back and forth until late in the half when a 3-point play from sophomore guard Cole Hebrink drew the Packers even at 61-61, but it was the Falcons suddenly seizing back the mometum, starting with a two-handed dunk from Ryan Kreager with 1:35 to go to put Faribault in front, 63-61. After an Austin turnover, Mohammed Madey, who scored 18 of his 23 points in the second half was fouled driving to the basket and made one of two free throws to give the Falcons a 64-61 lead, and he then made the play of the game as he stole the ball on Austin’s next possession and finished the play with a two-handed dunk at the other end to make the score 66-61. A layup from Rashid Ibrahim, who wound up with 19 points made the score 68-61, and the Falcons went on to outscore the Packers 13-2 in the last 1:35 to pick up the victory.
Austin had three players in double figures Tuesday evening, led by Peyton Ransom, who finished with 18 points, Cole Hebrink scored 12 of his 16 points in the second half, Isaac Osgood drained four of Austin’s eight second half 3-pointers on his way to 14 points, Jackson Clausman and Banyaan Omot each scored five points, and Dakota Retterath tallied four points.
With the loss, the Packers are now 1-3 overall and 1-3 in the Big 9 Conference, and Austin will play their first non-conference game Thursday night as they play host to Section 1AAA rival Byron, with the varsity tip-off scheduled for 7:30 p.m.