Austin grad starting strong for Riverland women’s basketball team

Published 12:18 am Friday, November 27, 2009

An Austin grad has started her college basketball career with a bigger role than she ended her high school career with — and she’s fitting in just fine.

After operating as a a secondary scoring option at Austin High School last season, Riverland freshman Krista Viehauser has become the Blue Devils go-to scorer this season. She averaged 10.6 points and 6.7 rebounds per game her senior year of high school and she is already putting up 22 points and seven rebounds per game at RCC.

“She’s flown under the radar and I don’t think she’s been given enough credit for how many things she does well and for the strength and the speed that she has,” RCC head coach Suzy Hebrink said. “She’ll just continue to get better and we look forward to watching her improve.”

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Viehauser has already scored 30 points in game, which is something she never did in high school, and she’s leading the Blue Devils (2-3 overall) in scoring. She was surprised by her quick start, but she’s starting to grow more comfortable as the main option at RCC.

“I was really surprised (with my fast start), but my dad told me I shouldn’t have been,” she said. “Now I have more confidence then I did at high school.”

Viehauser, who works on her game year round, brings a solid combination of quickness to go along with her 5-11 size. She is the focal point of Riverland’s offense in the paint, she can hit the three-pointer and she crashes the boards regularly.

About the only thing she hasn’t done is become a big vocal leader, but that goes along with her personality. Hebrink said Viehauser leads in her own way.

“Krista’s quiet, there’s no doubt about that,” Hebrink said. “She sets a good example and she works hard everyday in practice. What she’s not saying, she’s doing.”

Viehauser decided to come to Riverland when Hebrink approached her before the high school season last year. Knowing that RCC was her best chance to keep playing basketball, she didn’t hesitate to join the Blue Devils.

“I still wanted to play basketball, so I figured why not?” Viehauser said.

Now Viehauser is hoping to improve enough to the point where she can play for another two years at a four-year school when she finishes her career at RCC.

Hebrink thinks that’s a definite possibility down the road.

“Krista’s been able to move right in with the best defenders guarding her,” Hebrink said. “She’ll definitely be able to improve and react to the defense even better. She’s already pretty savvy with the ball and she can score.”

Viehauser said she took note of Austin grads Brooke Monson and Anna Hebrink who played at RCC and have now signed on with Division II schools to play basketball. She’s hoping to play at another level like them and she’s learning a lot from Hebrink as a coach.

“She’s a good coach and she gets you to want to do what you should do, while still being a friend you can talk to,” Viehauser said.

The Blue Devils will travel to Crossroads Nov. 30. They will host Central Lakes Friday, Dec. 4 at 6 p.m. and host Fon da Lac Saturday, Dec. 5 at 1 p.m.