The Gustavus Adolphus men’s basketball team fell to Carthage College 63-58 in a non-conference game Sunday afternoon in St. Peter. The Gusties had a 37-18 rebounding advantage during the game, but committed 20 turnovers (7 in the second half) to Carthage’s 12.
After missing their first two field goal attempts of the game, the Gusties’ shooting hit a hot streak. Gustavus hit its next 12 shots to take a 27-12 lead with 7:20 to play in the first half. Phil Sowden (Sr., Brooklyn Park, Minn.) scored nine points for Gustavus during the stretch, followed by Andrew Doble (Jr., Sarasota, Fla.) with eight and Trevor Wittwer (Jr., Redwood Falls, Minn.) with seven. The run would not last, though, as the Gusties missed their next seven field goal attempts to give the Red Men the opening they needed. A pair of Sean Fendley jumpers, follwed by a three-pointer by Bill Shemerdiak and two lay-ups by Neb Franciskovic cut the Gustie lead to four points at 27-23 before Wittwer was able to make good on a lay-up of his own for Gustavus. with 47 seconds remaining in the half. Trey Bowens sank a pair of free throws with nine seconds left on the clock and finished out the period by creating a turnover and sinking a lay-up as time expired, leaving the Gusties with a slim 29-27 lead at halftime.
Six-foot-seven post player Brian Schlemm gave the Red Men a 30-29 lead early in the second half with a three-pointer, but Gustavus responded with six straight points to lead 35-30 with 17:14 remaining in the game. A three-pointer by Shemerdiak gave Carthage a 37-36 lead with 14:20 to play, capping a 7-1 Red Man run. Gustavus took the lead back only shortly on a pair of Tyler Kramer (Sr., Hayfield, Minn.) free throws, but lay-ups by Sean Fendley and Billy Jacklin gave Carthage a three-point advantage.
Kane Sivesind (Jr., Madison, Wis.) tied the game at 41-41 on a three-pointer with 10:13 to play, but Carthage’s Navarro Thompson responded with a three-pointer of his own on the Red Men’s next trip down the court, giving Carthage a 44-41 lead. The Carthage lead fluxuated between one and five points for the next several minutes before Sowden tied the game at 56-56 on a lay-up with 2:43 left on the clock. After Brian Schlemm gave the Red Men the lead back at 59-56 on a free throw and a jumper, Doble cut the lead back to a single point with a lay-up with 0:18 to play. A pair of Joe Higgins free throws extended the Carthage lead back to three with 0:13 on the clock, leaving Gustavus one final chance to tie the game, but much like he did at the end of the first half, Carthage’s Trey Bowens created a turnover near midcourt and converted an easy lay-up in the final seconds to give the Red Men the five-point victory, 63-58.
Doble led all players with 21 points and 10 rebounds off the Gustavus bench, hitting 10 of 14 shots from the field. Sowden added 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting, while Wittwer added 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting and tallied seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block. Sivesind (seven points) and Kramer (three points) were the only other Gusties to find the scoring column. Schlemm led the Red Men with 15 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field, followed by Bill Shemerdiak with 12 points on four three-pointers. Sean Fendley added nine points, while Billy Jacklin came down with a team-high seven rebounds in 28 minutes of work.
Gustavus finished the game hitting 50.0 percent of their shots (24-48), a slightly better percentage than Carthage’s 48.9 percent (23-47). The Red Men did have an advantage from behind the three-point line. After not attempting a three-pointer in their season-opening win over Grinnell, Carthage made six of 14 attempts from long distance, including five of nine in the second half. By contrast, the Gusties were 2-of-11 for the game.
Gustavus (1-2) opens MIAC play Wednesday, Nov. 29 by hosting Macalester. Carthage (2-0) plays at Carroll (Wis.) Tuesday evening, Nov. 28.