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#20 Augustana Stays Perfect



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ST. PAUL, Minn. - Drew Behrens hit a school -record five field goals and scored 16 of Augustana's points to lead the Vikings to a 22-16 victory over Concordia University, St. Paul in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference football Saturday afternoon in St. Paul, Minn.

Augustana stays perfect and moves to 5-0 (4-0 NSIC), while CU drops to 3-2 (2-2 NSIC).

The 5-0 start is the best for a Viking football team since 1942 when Augustana put together an 8-0 campaign.

Behrens hit field goals from 46, 30, 20, 33, and 32 yards. The previous school record was set by Adam Brinkman, who connected on four field goals against South Dakota State on Oct. 19, 2002. He also broke the school record for field goals attempted (5) and points scored by kicking (16). Brinkman also previously held the record for field goals attempted in a game and points scored by kicking, having tried five field goals and scored 15 points in that same game against SDSU in 2002. Brinkman also scored 15 points with his leg against Northern State on Aug. 30, 2001.

Joe Clark recorded his first 100-plus yard rushing outing of the season, finishing with 134 yards on 22 carries.

Josh Hanson, who entered the game as the NSIC's leading passer, completed 10 of 26 passes for 119 yards and one touchdown.

The Vikings were without the play of senior wide receiver  Tyler Schulte, who sat out Saturdy with an injury.  Schulte headed into the contest leading NCAA Division II receiving yards per game.

The receiving corps got a lift from Jordan Marshall, who caught four passes for 51 yards and one touchdown--all career highs.

The Augustana defense was anchored by a 10-tackle performance from Chris Janisch.  The Vikings also got interceptions from Dan O'Keefe and Andrew Keel.  The pick from O'Keefe was his fifth of the season.

It was the leg of Behrens that got the Viking on the board first. On Augustana’s first possession, the Vikings set up the junior from 46 yards out, and he connected for a career-long field goal to move his squad ahead 3-0.

The Golden Bears, though, immediately answered with a seven-play, 80-yard drive that was finished by a Spencer Ohm to Charles Gilbert 55-yard touchdown strike.

Augustana again looked to Behrens for its next score—this one a 30-yard field goal to cap a 58-yard march. Clark covered the bulk of that drive as he netted 30 yards both receiving and rushing.

O’Keefe, who has been haunting opposing quarterbacks all season, picked off his fifth pass of the season on the ensuing CU offensive series.

The Vikings failed to turn the interception into a productive offensive series of their own, putting together a three-and-out after a pair of incomplete passes.

CU found itself in Vikings territory on the resulting series, but the Augustana defense made a pair of big stops on its own 46-yard line. Facing a third-and-one, CU was stuffed twice by the Vikings and returned the ball to Augustana for what would turn into a touchdown drive.

That drive was kept alive by Clark, who turned a fourth-and-two scenario at the Golden Bear 46-yard line into a 41-yard run. Three plays later, a scrambling Hanson found Jordan Marshall in the back of the endzone for the junior’s first career touchdown.

With 2 minutes, 42 seconds to work with, the Golden Bears covered 80 yards and tied the game with a Ohm to Hayden Vavra 3-yard touchdown pass. Steven King missed the point after to keep the game knotted at 13-13.

After a scoreless third quarter, Behrens gave the Vikings their first lead of the game when he connected on his third field goal of the contest—this one a 20-yard connection—to conclude a 73-yard drive. It was Behrens’ second field goal attempt of the second half as he missed from 34 yards out in the third quarter.

Behrens extended the Augustana lead to six with another field goal with just over eight minutes left in the contest. His try from 33 yards was perfect and gave the Vikings a 19-13 advantage.

Nursing a six-point advantage, Keel picked off Ohm’s pass and returned it one yard to the midfield and gave the Vikings a huge possession with 7:36 left in the game.

For the sixth time in the game, the Vikings leaned on Behrens to produce. And he did just that, connecting from 27 yards to extend Augustana’s lead to 22-13.

The Golden Bears had themselves a two possession game and proceeded to march down the field and drill a 27-yard field goal, setting up an onside kick. The Vikings, however, pounced on it on the CU 41-yard line.

A conservative Augustasna offense rushed three times before Behrens placed a punt to the CU 6-yard line. The Golden Bears managed a 15 yard return and went to work with 37 seconds left. But a sack by Diego Oquendo and three incomplete passes from Ohm sealed the win for the Vikings.

For the first time since the Vikings opened the season at home against St. Coud State, Augustana allowed more than 300 yards of total offense.  The Golden Bears accumulated 358 yards of total offense, with 129 coming on the ground. The ground attack by CU was a season high for rushing yards allowed for the Vikings.

Ohm finished 19 of 30 for 229 yards and two touchdowns for CU.  Gilbert caught six passes for 124 yards and one score.  Al Quaye paced the Golden Bear defense with 12 tackles.

Augustana returns home next Saturday to face Northern State in a "Viking Days" battle.  Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.

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