The Gustavus Adolphus men’s basketball team shot 61.5% from the field and held a 2-to-1 advantage in rebounds en route to a 80-57 win over Concordia Monday in St. Peter. Andrew Doble (Jr., Sarasota, Fla./Cardinal Mooney) led four Gusties in double-figures with 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting off the bench.
With the exception of a tie at 2-2 in the first minute of the first half, the Gusties led from start to finish. Gustavus jumped out to an 11-2 lead and the Cobbers were never within five points the rest of the way. It was not for lack of effort, though. Every shot seemed like it had a chance to go in, even a 12-foot floater from Mike DesLauriers (Minnetonka, Minn./Benilde-St. Margaret) as time expired in the first half that gave Gustavus a 12-point lead at halftime.
Both teams shot over 60% from the field in the first half, with Gustavus holding a 64.5% to 63.6% advantage, but the Gusties were able to build and maintain their lead on the strength of a 16-4 rebounding advantage. Gustavus’ strength on the boards during the first 20 minutes, which included a 7-0 advantage on the offensive end, translated into an 11-0 advantage in second-chance points. During a ten-minute stretch midway through the first half, the teams combined to hit 17 of 23 shots from the field, including seven in a row at one point.
Jay Stien (Sr., Arlington, Minn./Sibley East) came out on fire to start the second half, scoring the first eight Gustavus points of the half on three jumpers and a pair of free throws to put the Gusties up 54-40 with 17:26 remaining in the game. Luke Linz sank the second of two free throws to make the score 54-41, but Phil Sowden (Sr., Brooklyn Park, Minn./Park Center) answered with a jumper from along the key to restore the lead to 15 points.
A layup by Lenz momentarily brought the lead back to 13 at 56-43 with 15:25 to play, but the Gusties went on a 20-5 run over the next ten minutes to extend their lead to 28 points (76-48) with 5:23 to play. Concordia scored nine of the game’s last 13 points, but the game was well out of reach.
Gustavus finished the game hitting 61.5% (32-52) of its shots from the field, while Concordia’s hot streak cooled a bit in the second half with their shooting percentage dipping to 52.2% (24-46) overall. The Gusties also finished the game with a 30-15 rebounding advantage.
Luke Linz led the Cobbers with 15 points on 7-of-12 shooting, while James Baldwin hit six of eight shots from the field for 12 points. Doble finished with 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting to lead Gustavus, while Jay Stien and Trevor Wittwer (Jr., Redwood Falls, Minn./Redwood Valley) each chipped in with 12 points apiece. Stien and Wittwer also finished as the game’s top two rebounders with eight and seven, respectively. Sowden added 11 points and a game-high five assists, moving into 19th place on Gustavus’ career scoring list with 1079 points, passing Bill Laumann (1177 points; 1962-66).
Gustavus’ win, combined with Bethel’s 85-76 win over St. Olaf, leaves the Gusties and Royals tied for third place in the MIAC standings at 10-6 with four league games remaining each. The Gusties (12-9, 10-6 MIAC) host league-leader St. Thomas (20-2, 16-1 MIAC) Wednesday at Gus Young Court.