The Gustavus men’s basketball team was unable to hit the key shots down the stretch, while Zach Johnson knocked down several key shots for Carleton as the Knights slipped past the Gusties 74-66 on Gus Young Court in St. Peter, Minn. Andrew Doble led Gustavus with 12 points. Gustavus finished the regular season at 18-7 overall and 14-6 in the MIAC.
The Gusties jumped out to an early first half lead, but Carleton tied the score at 13-13 and took its first lead at 15-13 at the 10:59 mark. The Gusties would battle back to tie the score once late in the second half, but the Knights would not relinquish the lead once they had claimed it at 15-13. Carleton built its lead to as many as 10 points three times in the first 20 minutes, however the Gusties cut the lead to two at 34-32 with 1:20 remaining in the half. Carleton took a four-point 38-34 lead into the locker room at the intermission.
In the second half, Carleton maintained a five to eight point lead throughout the first 10 minutes of play, however the Gusties used a 5-0 run to tie the score at 53-53 with 8:56 left on the clock. The Knights countered with an 8-0 run to take a 61-53 lead at the 5:53 mark, but then the Gusties used a 7-0 run to cut the lead to one point at 63-62 with 2:51 left to play. With Carleton leading 67-64 and 1:41 on the clock, it appeared that Gustavus was going to force the Knights to give ball over on a shot-clock violation, however Zach Johnson tossed up a fade away jumper from 25 feet away that found its way into the hoop as the shot clock expired. Instead of the Gusties having the ball and trailing by three, they trailed by six with one minute to play. Gustavus was forced to foul to try to get back into the game and the Knights made enough of their free throw opportunities to claim the 74-66 victory.
With the win, Carleton (18-7, 13-7) secured a third place finish in the MIAC regular season standings and the #3 seed in the MIAC Playoffs. Gustavus will be the #2 seed in the MIAC Post-Season Tournament.
Zach Johnson led Carleton with 32 points, while Bryan Rosett added 13 for the Knights. Carleton shot 57.8 percent from the field in the game (26-45) including 68.2 percent in the first half (15-22).
Doble with 12 and Tyler Kaus with 11 were the only two players in double figures for Gustavus. The Gusties shot a mediocre 43.3 percent from the field (26-60) in the game.