Tyler Kaus hit a running layup with :01 left to help Gustavus rally from a 15-point second half deficit and defeat St. Thomas 59-58 at Gus Young Court in St. Peter, Minn. The Gusties used an 18-0 run over a seven minute stretch in the second half to rally from a 13-point deficit (48-35 at 12:27) to a five-point lead (53-48 at 5:52). Tyler Kaus led the comeback with eight points including two long three-point baskets. Gustavus wing Trevor Wittwer led all scorers with 24 points, while Tyler Kaus contributed a season high 14. The Gusties improve to 9-3 overall and 5-2 in the MIAC, while St. Thomas falls to 10-3 overall and 6-2 in the MIAC.
Gustavus scored the first four points of the game, but St. Thomas countered with a 9-0 run to take a 9-4 lead and the Tommies would trail by no fewer than five points the rest of the half. The Tommies biggest lead of the first half was 10 points at 23-13 with 8:48 on the clock. The Gusties’ Sam Paulson banked in a leaner just before halftime (:03 left) to allow Gustavus to pull within eight points at the intermission 31-23. Trevor Wittwer scored 10 points in the first half for the Gusties, while Joe Scott led the Tommies with eight points.
St. Thomas outscored Gustavus 9-2 in the first three minutes of the second half to extend its lead to 15 points at 40-25 with 16:53 left to play. Teddie Archer nailed a pull-up three pointer at the 12:27 mark to give St. Thomas a 13-point lead at 48-35. The Tommies would not score for the next seven minutes as Gustavus went on an 18-0 run to take a five-point lead at 53-48 with 5:52 left in regulation play.
During the 18-0 run, the Gusties were 7-of-7 from the field and 2-of-2 from the free throw line. Tyler Kaus scored eight points during the rally including two long three-point baskets.
St. Thomas broke the drought at the 5:21 mark when Al McCoy made one-of-two free throws to make the score 53-49. Gustavus led 57-52 with 3:57 to play when Lonnie Robinson knocked in a trey to cut the Gustie lead to two at 57-55. Neither team would score for the next two minutes and then Teddy Archer hit another three to give the Tommies a one-point lead at 58-57 with 1:03 on the clock. Both teams missed scoring opportunities in the final minute and then Gustavus fouled Archer with :11 left which put him at the line shooting one free throw with the bonus. Archer missed the first free throw and Gustavus got the rebound. Tyler Kaus got the outlet pass and pushed the ball up the right side of the floor. He saw that the right side of the lane was open so he drove past a Tommie defender and sent up a high arching layup that nestled into the net to give Gustavus a one-point lead (59-58) with :01.3 seconds left on the clock. St. Thomas called a timeout to set up a last second play, but the full court in-bounds pass was knocked away by Trevor Wittwer and the Gusties escaped with an important win over the league leading Tommies.
Trevor Wittwer turned in an outstanding performance for Gustavus scoring 24 points on 8-of-14 shooting from the field and 8-of-10 shooting from the free throw line. He also grabbed three rebounds, dished out three assists, blocked four shots and registered a steal. Tyler Kaus finished with 14 points in one of the finest performances of his career. He was 6-of-7 from the field including 2-of-2 from behind the arc.
Joe Scott led St. Thomas with 16 points, while Teddy Archer contributed 12 points.
Both Gustavus and St. Thomas return to league play next Wednesday night at the Gusties travel to St. Paul to face Hamline, while the Tommies return home to host Concordia.