MEQUON, Wis. – It was a struggle all game on Saturday afternoon, but a missed layup and a late turnover by Aurora University allowed Concordia University Wisconsin to escape with a 58-55 home Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference victory.
The Falcons led by a point, 56-55, with less than 20 seconds to play and had the shot clock running down before they committed what could have been a devastating turnover inside the R. John Buuck Field House. AU stole a pass at the free throw line and connected down court on an outlet pass for a fastbreak layup, which was missed.
Senior Camille Parsons (Urbana, Ill.) gathered the missed attempt and sank a pair of free throws after getting fouled. The Spartans had one last opportunity to steal the league matchup, but a fumbled pass ended their chances.
The win gave CUW their fifth-straight victory to begin the 2013-14 campagin, which happens to the best start in head coach Stacey Brunner-Jones' era.
CUW (5-0, 2-0 NACC) led by double-figures midway through the first half and was up by 16 points with just under four minutes to play before halftime. It could have blown the game wide open, but was hampered by a 17-of-31 (54.8 percent) effort at the free throw line.
Senior Katie Luethe (Oshkosh, Wis.) led the Falcons with 11 points, to go along with six rebounds, three steals and two assists. Senior Anna Butler (Kewaskum, Wis.) had 10 points, seven rebounds, three steals and two assists. Sophomore Megan Coenen (Megan Coenen) added nine points and nine rebounds.
Shay Jenkins paced the Spartans with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting. Shannon Koski added 15 points and seven rebounds, while Bethan Dorrington finished with 11 points.
The Spartans (1-4, 0-1 NACC) made the game's opening field goal and led for the first one minute and 53 seconds, but the Falcons took over from then on. CUW answered with a 16-6 scoring over the next six and a half minutes of action.
After a short response by AU the lead swelled to a game-high 16 points with 3:45 remaining in the first half. The Falcons took a 37-25 lead into the locker room and held an 18-6 advantage in points off turnovers.
CUW's lead slowly dwindled until AU's Shay Jenkins sank a pair of free throws to give them a one-point lead with 1:59 left in the game. The Falcons ended the game with a 27-15 difference in points off turnovers, to go along with a 13-0 lead in bench scoring.
CUW returns to the court on Wednesday for a 7 p.m. home NACC contest against Edgewood College.