Teyghan Hovland tallied 19 points and pulled in 7 rebounds, Agwa Nywesh added 13 points and Okey Okey chipped in with 12 points off the bench as the Ausitn Packers boys basketball team opened the 2019-2020 campaign with a 62-58 win over Rochester Century in front of a large crowd at Packer Gym.
The Packers jumped out to a 13-8 lead in the first half, only to see the Panthers reel off a 14-0 run to take what would wind up being their biggest lead of the game at nine points 22-13. The Packers, however ended the half on a 13-4 run to tie the game at 26 at the half.
In the second half, the Packers pulled out of a 32-all tie with a 9-0 run to take their biggest lead of the night at nine points 41-32, but Century started to light things up from beyond the 3-point arc by hitting eight of them for the half, led by Stephen Olander, who drilled four 3’s alone to finish as the high scorer for the Panthers with 19 points. The 3-point barrage keyed a 14-2 run to push Century in front 46-43, and the two teams battled back and forth to a 52-all tie when Hovland wound up putting the Packers in the lead for good by hitting a 3 of his own from the left corner to give Austin a 55-52 lead. He also added a layup with under 2:00 to go to give the Packers a 57-54 lead, plus Hovland found Okey for a layup and a 59-54 lead with :46 to go. Nywesh clinched the game for Austin by hitting 3 of 4 from the line in a one-in-one situation in the closing seconds.
Austin was also led by Victor Idris, a sophomore seeing his first varsity action with 7 points, 8 rebounds and 4 assists, and Ogur Gari also added 7 points while Ethan Owens and Pierre Lilly each added two points for the 1-0 Packers, who were 10-12 from the line, but were forced into 21 turnovers by an agressive Century squad defensivley.
The Packers are back in action Friday night at home versus Winona in another Big 9 Conference matchup, with a start time of 7:30. You’ll hear the game on AM 1480 KAUS, also via the world-wide web at myaustinminnesota.com, and the I Heart Radio app.