Packer girls fall to Spartans

Published 11:40 pm Friday, February 1, 2013

Austin's Taylor Lady takes the ball inside against Rochester Mayo's Rachael Doll during the first half Friday night in Austin. -- Eric Johnson/

The Packer girls basketball team went down swinging, but they couldn’t keep up with Rochester Mayo in a 65-53 loss in Ove Berven Gym Friday night.

Austin's Alex Hansen drives the baseline during the first half Friday night in Packer Gym.

The Spartans (11-10 overall, 10-3 Big Nine) led 57-39 with 7:30 left in the game, but Austin made things interesting when Jenna Svoboda scored six straight points to pull her team within 60-51 with 2:15 left in the game.

The Packers (8-11 overall, 5-8 Big Nine) had two chances to pull even closer, but they committed two straight turnovers and Mayo closed the game out at the line.

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“I was pleased with the way we fought, battled and scratched to get back within nine,” Austin assistant coach Jeff Hovland said. “We had some chances and the ball didn’t bounce our way, but I like how we played.”

Svoboda finished with 20 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two steals for Austin and Mer Gach added 11 points.

“We switched it up on offense and spread it out a little in the second half,” Hovland said. “That was on the fly, and for the girls to pick that up and execute it was good to see.”Mayo ran most of its offense through their center Rachel Doll, who had 20 points. Doll also helped set up her teammates as the Spartans hit plenty of outside shots at key times.

Austin Steph Justice pulls up in the lane during the first half against Rochester Mayo Friday night in Ove Berven Gym.

“You pick your poison a little bit. When she’s posting up and you key on her, other kids hit some shots,” Hovland said.

Even with the loss, Austin has won seven of its last nine games as it heads down the second half of the Big Nine schedule.

“We’ve got some big games coming up against teams we can beat,” Hovland said. “We’re playing good basketball, it just sometimes come down to getting a shot here or there to fall.”

Austin pulled to within 25-22 on a Steph Justice jump shot late in the second half, but Mayo closed the frame on a 10-2 run.

Mayo 35 30 — 65

Austin 24 29 — 53

Austin scoring: Jenna Svoboda, 20; Mer Gach, 11; Alex Hansen, 8; Steph Justice, 5; Merideth Fritz, 5; Shayley Vesel, 2; Gabby Wagner, 2; free throws: 79 percent (15-for-19); rebounds: 25 (Svoboda, 8); turnovers: 19