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Bulldogs nip Auburn in the end

Sara Rhine

ESTERO, Fla. — The Drake women’s basketball team saw a six-point lead slip away in the final two minutes but got two clutch free throws from Sara Rhine with seven seconds left for an 83-82 victory over Auburn in Sunday’s fifth-place game of the Gulf Coast Showcase.

Drake (6-2) led 81-75 after Becca Hittner’s 3-pointer dropped with 2:18 left to play, but Daisa Alexander scored the next seven points for Auburn (3-4) to put the Tigers up 82-81 with 15 seconds remaining.

Out of a timeout, Hittner missed on a 3-point attempt but Rhine pulled down the offensive rebound before being fouled. She made both freebies with seven seconds left on the clock, and Auburn came up empty on two shots inside the last four seconds.

Rhine finished with a team-leading 22 points for the Bulldogs, going 8-of-12 from the field and 6-of-6 at the free-throw line. Kierra Collier and Maggie Negaard both had 15 points and Hittner added 10 points in the win.

Alexander and Lauren Hansen both scored 24 points to lead Auburn, and Unique Thompson had a double-double of 12 points and 11 rebounds. Hansen shot 7-for-14 from 3-point range as the Tigers made 13 treys in all.

Drake returns home for Thursday’s 11 a.m. game against Waldorf University in its annual “Pack the Knapp” game.

DRAKE 83, AUBURN 82

At Estero, Fla.

DRAKE (6-2) — Rhine 8-12 6-6 22, Collier 7-9 0-0 15, Hittner 3-12 3-4 10, Monahan 0-3 0-0 0, Rose 3-6 3-3 9, Bair 0-0 0-0 0, Burich 2-4 0-0 4, Wooldridge 2-3 0-0 5, Fuller 0-0 0-0 0, Gueldner 1-4 0-0 3, Negaard 6-8 0-0 15. TOTALS 32-61 12-13 83.

AUBURN (3-4) — Thompson 5-9 2-3 12, White 2-2 2-2 6, Alexander 7-17 6-6 24, Hansen 8-15 1-2 24, Moore 2-10 0-0 5, Howard 1-4 0-1 2, Kelly 0-0 0-0 0, Hughes 2-3 0-0 5, Robinson-Nwagwu 1-2 0-0 2, Wells 0-0 2-2 2. TOTALS 28-62 13-16 82.

Drake 26 18 18 21 — 83

Auburn 18 24 24 16 — 82

3-Point Goals–Drake 7-25 (Rhine 0-1, Collier 1-3, Hittner 1-7, Monahan 0-2, Rose 0-2, Wooldridge 1-1, Gueldner 1-4, Negaard 3-5), Auburn 13-29 (Alexander 4-9, Hansen 7-14, Moore 1-4, Howard 0-1, Hughes 1-1). Assists–Drake 20 (Rose 8), Auburn 15 (Alexander 4). Fouled Out–None. Rebounds–Drake 24 (Burich 7), Auburn 29 (Thompson 11). Total Fouls–Drake 15, Auburn 14. A–457.