In a game you heard on AM 1480 KAUS, the Austin Packers girls basketball team, the No. 3 seed in the Section 1AAA tournament and the No. 15 team in the state in Class AAA in the latest poll from the Minnesota Basketball News hosted sixth-seeded Kasson-Mantorville in the section quarterfinals at Ove Berven Gym Wednesday evening, and a 3-pointer from 8th grade guard Quinn Osgood :07 seconds into the game wound up giving the Packers a lead they would not relinquish as they downed the Komets 77-59.
Osgood drained another 3-pointer shortly thereafter, senior guard Cassidy Shute swished two 3’s and sophomore guard Ajiem Agwa added one of her own as Austin hit their first five 3-point field goals in the game and six out of their first seven to jump out to a 16-6 lead with 14:27 left in the first half. Kasson-Mantorville, led by guard Keigan Cummings, who scored 14 of her 21 points in the first half rallied back with a 8-0 run to cut Austin’s lead to 16-14, but the Packers countered with a 14-4 run of their own to take a 30-18 lead. The Komets narrowed the gap to 32-27 with a 9-2 run with 4:00 left to play in the half, but the Packers again had an answer with a 9-3 run to close out the first half with a 41-30 lead.
Austin would not let Kasson-Mantorville make another run to put themselves back in the game in the second half as a steal by Cassidy Shute, one of 18 Komet turnovers in the game, and a put-back basket from Agwa in transition boosted Austin’s lead to 53-37, and a 16-7 run overall to open the half gave the Packers a 20-point lead at 57-37 on their way to the 18-point win.
Agwa led Austin in scoring Wednesday night with 25 points, senior forward Olivia Walsh scored 14 of her 22 points in the second half, Quinn Osgood wound up with four of the Packers’ 13 3-point field goals in the game on her way to 21 points, and Shute drained three 3-pointers in the game for nine points.
With the win, Austin is now 19-8 on the season, and the Packers will travel to Big 9 Conference rival Red Wing for the Section 1AAA semifinals Saturday night, with tip-off at 7 p.m. The No. 2 seeded Wingers decked seventh-seeded Albert Lea 81-39 Wednesday night. The other semifinal Saturday night will pit top-seeded Stewartville, who won their 22nd game in a row Wednesday night 72-26 over No. 8 seed Faribault hosting No. 4 seed Byron, as the Bears downed fifth-seeded Winona 73-62.