Kevin Sethre, Staff Writer
The Augsburg men’s basketball team saw their season come to an end after a 76-68 loss to St. Olaf in the MIAC Playoff Quarterfinals.
The Auggies led 38-34 at the half, but the Oles opened the second half with a 21-4 run over an 8:34 period to take a 13-point lead. While Augsburg started shooting better and was able to cut the deficit to three points multiple times in the final minutes, St. Olaf held on and pulled away with some clutch free throws at the end.
It was a tail of two halves for both teams on the night. The Oles were held to 37.5 percent shooting from the field and 21.4 percent from three in the first half, but they caught fire and shot 51.5 percent and 44.4 percent, respectively, in the second. Meanwhile, the Auggies started out hot. They made 53.8 percent of field goals and 41.7 percent of three-pointers before cooling down after the break and shooting only 37.9 percent and 16.7 percent, respectively.
Playing in his final game for Augsburg, Booker Coplin led the team with 22 points, 11 rebounds and five assists. On Tuesday, he won the MIAC Player of the Year for the second year in a row after leading the conference in field goals, three-point field goals, free throws and points. He will leave as one of the best to ever do it in an Auggie uniform.
There were several other seniors on this team that have had an impact on the program. Henry Mulligan started 55 games in his Auggie career and was one of the team’s top scorers and three point shooters. Isaiah Robinson started five games in the 2019-20 season, including two against St. Olaf. Aaron Ertz played in 54 games and started one in his junior season. Martin Mitchell started 17 games during his senior season and was a great three-point shooter, making 41.5 percent over his four seasons at Augsburg. Carter Duncan ripped down a phenomenal 84 offensive rebounds and 207 total rebounds during his Auggie career.
The Auggies will have to replace many key pieces of their rotation next season with the departure of this senior class, but have proven in the past that they can retool and make deep postseason runs.