Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Big Game 2-4-12: #2 vs. #3

It wasn't #1 vs. #2 but it was the next thing: #2 vs. #3. It had MIAC championship playoffs written all over it. It was 2nd place St. Thomas at 3rd place Augsburg. And the Tommies almost blew a 17-point lead before beating the Auggies 75-72.

Augsburg out-shot St. Thomas 51 percent to 44 and 89 percent to 74 from the FT line. But the Tommies won the possession game and got off 10 more shots.

Noah Kaiser scored 24 for St. Thomas, including the pair of FT that made it 75-72 with :20 remaining. Andy Grzesiak-Grimm scored 20 with 8 boards for Augsburg.

The Tommies scored 14 straight points to break out of a 26-all tie late in the 1st half, and they never trailed thereafter. It was 40-29 at the end of the 1st half, 53-36 early in the 2nd, and still 61-50 midway through. But the Auggies were within 1 at 73-72 with :39 left on a jumper by Andy Siedlitz. That's when Kaiser made his game-winning FT.

Gustavus is 12-3, St. Thomas is 12-4, St. Olaf is 11-5 and Augsburg is 10-6.

Player of the Day

Bobby Fong of St. Olaf scored 36 points in a 74-57 win over Bethel that kept the Oles in 3rd place in the MIAC.

Coach of the Day

The Minnesota Timberwolves defeated Kevin McHale's Houston Rockets 100-91 to get to .500 (12-12) for the 1st time in 5 years. Ricky Rubio is a big part of the turnaround, but I remain convinced that Rick Adelman is an even bigger reason for the Wolves high caliber of play this year. This guy can coach.

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