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"Key to the City" Belongs to the Coo'

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Augustana (3-5 NSIC, 1-3 NSIC South) scored on its possession of double overtime but had its extra point blocked and No. 23 University of Sioux Falls (7-1 NSIC, 3-1 NSIC South) scored on its final possession of the second overtime and nailed the extra point to sneak out of Kirkeby-Over Stadium with a 32-31 in front of a record 7,120 fans on Saturday.

The two teams met for the first time in 26 years with the last meeting on Sept. 4, 1986 at Howard Wood Field. The victory marks the first ever for Sioux Falls over Augustana.

Augustana scored with 30 seconds left in the game to tie the game at 25 and send it to overtime. USF took one shot down field on its next possession before taking a knee to send it into overtime.

In the first overtime the Cougars struck for a 23-yard pass on their first play. On the next play Augustana's Austin Luecke intercepted his third pass of the season to set up the Viking offense. All the Vikings had to do was score to take home the “Key to the City.” The Cougars blocked the 38-yard field goal attempt by Drew Behrens to send it in to a second overtime.

The Vikings started with the ball in the second overtime and scored in just three plays. Dajon Newell rushed twice for 21 yards before Josh Hanson took a four-yard dash in for the score. For the second time in the game USF blocked an extra point and the Vikings held a 31-25 lead with USF taking over on offense.

The Cougars scored on a nine yard pass from Taylor Perkins to Carrington Hanna to tie the game at 31. Braden Wieking hit the extra point and the Cougars snuck out of Kirkeby-Over Stadium with a 32-31 win.

Augustana finished the game with 470 yards of total offense, including 193 yards rushing. Hanson finished the game 25 of 42 passing for 277 yards and two scores.

USF finished the game with 347 yards of total offense throwing for 238 yards. Perkins finished the game 21 of 30 passing with an interception and a touchdown pass.

Dajon Newell led all rushers with 93 yards on 17 carries, averaging 5.5 yards per rush. CJ Ham finished with 64 yards on the ground and a score. Ben Parsley caught his team-leading eighth touchdown of the season and finished with 87 yards.

Jeremiah Oates led the Cougars with 129 receiving yards. Hanna finished with seven catches and 80 yards with a score.

Augustana freshman Adam Juhl led the Vikings with a career-high 11 tackles, including eight solo stops. Austin Luecke finished with seven tackles and intercepted his third pass of the season. Augustana finished with four sacks in the game, the most since Nov. 12, 2011 against Upper Iowa.

Both teams sustained long drives on their first possessions of the game. The Vikings went 45 yards on 12 plays and failed to score before the Cougars drove 80 yards on 15 plays to score the game's first points and take a 7-0 lead.

Augustana moved the ball down the field quickly on its first drive of the game but saw its drive stall after getting into Cougar territory. Hanson extended the drive early facing third down and 12 hitting Jorgensen for an 18-yard completion.

Perkins was 5 of 8 for 50 yards on USF's first possession and the Cougars scored the game's first touchdown on a two-yard run by Porter.

After an incomplete pass on first down at USF's 20 the Vikings lost 10 yards on its next two plays and were set up to kick a 47-yard field goal. Augustana faked the field goal and pooched a punt that went out of bounds at the USF 20.

Three drives later, USF took a 14-0 lead when Perkins dashed into the end zone on a nine-yard scoring play. Earlier in the drive, Perkins hit Jeremiah Oates with a big 36-yard reception down the sideline to move into Augustana territory. Three plays later the Cougars found the end zone on Perkins' nine-yard score.

The Vikings picked up a first down on its next drive but was forced to punt. Drew Behrens helped the Vikings get on the board for the first time of the game with a 63-yard punt that pinned USF at its own 12-yard line.

Brandon Mohr, making his first career start at defensive end, sacked Perkins for a loss of eight yards backing USF up to its own four yard line. Jake Lee came up with a sack on the very next play in the end zone resulting in a safety to make the score 14-2 in favor of the Vikings. 

Augustana cut into USF's lead right before halftime when Parsley caught a jump ball in the corner of the end zone with 30 seconds left in the half. The extra point was blocked and the two teams went in to the locker room with USF leading 14-8.

Augustana rushed for 125 yards in the first half, led by Newell who dashed for 69 yards. CJ Ham ran seven times for 35 yards in the half. USF led the passing game in the first half with 107 yards through the air. Hanson passed for 87 yards, 59 of which went to Parsley.

Parsley had a 41-yard reception three plays before he caught his team-leading eighth touchdown pass of the season. Six of Parsley's eight touchdown catches have been of 14 yards or less. 

USF started off the second half with the ball and drove the length of the field but saw its drive stall after a holding penalty on first down at Augustana's six yard-line. The Cougars' would settle for a 22-yard field goal by Braden Wieking to push their lead to 17-8.

The Vikings answered with an impressive 8-play 82-yard scoring drive that took 3:44 off the clock to come within two at 17-15. After a 19-yard rush by Ham, Hanson went deep to Parsley in the end zone and the Cougars were called for pass interference setting up the Vikings at the USF 20.

Four plays later, Ham rumbled into the end zone for six-yard touchdown, his second of the season.

The Viking defense forced a three-and-out on USF's next drive setting up another long drive by the Augustana offense. Hanson led the Vikings on a 13-play 52-yard drive that took up just under six minutes of game clock that ended with a 38-yard field goal by Drew Behrens that put Augustana up 18-17 with 30 seconds left in the third quarter.

The two teams both punted on their next possessions in drives that both took up just under well over three minutes. Sioux Falls then put together a nine-play 73-yard drive that ended in a 12-yard rushing touchdown by Jordan Taylor. The Cougars converted a two-point conversion to go up 25-18 with 3:59 left to play in the game.

Augustana moved right down the field while converting twice on third down and once on fourth down to extend the drive. Augustana faced fourth down and five at the USF seven-yard line and Hanson found Isaac Jorgensen wide open in the flat and he walked into the end zone to set up the game-tying extra point. Behrens put it through the uprights to tie the game at 25.

Double overtime would then decide the first-ever “Key to the City” winner.

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