The Augustana defense set up two late touchdowns deep in St Cloud State territory to lead the Vikings to a 32-23 season-opening victory over the Huskies Saturday afternoon in a non-conference game at Kirekby-Over Stadium.
Mike Aldrich becomes the fifth head coach in Augustana football history to win his first game.
The Viking defense came up with two big plays late in the game–both which gave and extended the Augustana lead. Trailing 23-17, Augustana capitalized on a bad snap on a SCSU punt, taking over on the 2-yard line with 5:18 remaining. That set up a Joe Clark touchdown. On the Huskies’ next series, a Dan O’Keefe interception set up another Clark score and made it a two-possession game at 32-23.
Ryan Isaacson led the tenacious defensive unit for the Vikings, finishing with a eight tackles and recording his first career sack late in the game on SCSU’s final drive.
O’Keefe’s eight tackles tied a career high for the senior. His interception with just over two minutes left in the game set up the score that would put the Vikings up by a decisive eight points.
Sophomore quarterback Josh Hanson put together a solid outing in his second career start. He connected on 9 of 19 passes for 256 yards and two touchdowns.
Tyler Schulte was his favorite target, snagging six balls for 196 yards and both touchdowns.
Clark rushed 22 times for 70 yards and two touchdowns.