Huskies start fast to bring down Packers

Published 9:24 pm Friday, December 17, 2021

A second half surge wasn’t enough for the Austin boys basketball team as it lost to Owatonna 62-52 in Packer Gym Friday night.

Manny Guy hit a pair of free throws to bring the Packers within 58-52 with 1:53 left in the game, but the Huskies put it away when Connor Ginskey scored on an eight-foot runner to make it 60-52 with 1:20 left.

“We put up a fight inside in the second half, but we just had a bad first half and it’s hard to overcome against a good team,” Austin head coach Kris Fadness said.  

Austin was sluggish for most of the first half, but it opened with a lot of fire in the second frame as it scored 12 straight points over the first six minutes to pull within 41-35 after Kaden Murely knocked down a three with 13:54 left in the game.

The Huskies were able to settle down and control the pace the rest of the way as Nick Williams and Brayden Williams hit back-to-back threes to make it 54-41 with seven minutes left in the game.

The Packers (2-2 overall) hung with the Huskies for the first eight minutes of the contest as Jack Lang hit a three-pointer to put Austin up 14-13, but Owatonna made a quick resurgence as the Huskies put together an 11-point spurt to take a double digit lead. Brayden Williams hit a pair of threes during the rally for the Huskies.

Owatonna led by as many as 20 in the first half.

“The first half was a disaster,” Fadness said. “We just didn’t play well. We were 3-of-15 from the three point line and we were 7-of-11 on twos. We came out and we just jacked three after three and we missed them all. They were all quick, early in the possession and we didn’t give a chance to let our defense rest.”

Owatonna’s 6-foot, 8-inch center Evan Dushek dominated the paint throughout the night as he scored 15 of his 19 in the first half. Brayden Williams finished with 24 points.

Victor Idris finished with nine points, 11 rebounds and five assists for Austin.

Austin’s only lead of the night came when Gage Manahan hit a three to put the Packers up 5-4 early on. Manahan finished with 20 points and three steals.

Owatonna 41  21  —  62

Austin 23  29  —  52

Austin scoring: Gage Manahan, 20; Kaden Murley, 12; Victor Idris, 9; Manny Guy, 5; Jack Lang, 3; Cham Okey, 3; free throws: 50 percent (6-for-12); rebounds: 26 (Idris, 10); turnovers: 12