The Gustavus men’s basketball team moved to 4-0 in MIAC play with a thrilling 77-72 overtime win over Augsburg College on Wednesday night in Minneapolis, Minn. A pair of free throws by Phil Wirtjes with :11 seconds to play in regulation tied the game at 61-61, heading into overtime. The Gusties cruised in the overtime period, taking an eight point lead with 16 seconds left to play, and holding on for the win. Seth Anderson led all scorers in the game with 18 points, as Ryan McPartland was the second leading scorer with 17 points.
Gustavus was in control for the opening ten minutes of the first half, going 7-18 from the floor and 4-6 from behind the arch. However, Augsburg closed the gap with a 15-6 run to send the game into halftime with the Gusties leading by one point 24-23. Jesse Van Sickle and Anderson each scored six points as Van Sickle went 2-2 from three-point range and Anderson shot 3-4 from the floor in the half. The Gusties shot 33.1% (10-30) from the floor in the half, as Augsburg shot 32.1% (9-28).
The two teams would go back and forth for opening 13:00 minutes of the second half. The Auggies led by as much as seven points with 5:38 left to play, as they were led by David Olson, who scored 10 points on 4-5 shooting in the half. Gustavus would go on an 8-1 run with under five minutes to play to tie the game at 55-55 with 2:56 remaining on the clock. A pair of free throws by Brett Sorenson gave Augsburg another four point lead, yet Gustavus would respond with four unanswered points to send the game into overtime. Ryan McPartland had a big second half and overtime, as he scored 15 points, shooting 7-8 from the field.
Five different Gustavus players scored in overtime as the Gusties built an eight point lead with 1:16 left to play in the game. Augsburg would threaten with less than 20 seconds to play, bringing the game to within three points, yet two free throws by Phil Wirtjes would cement the five-point Gustavus victory.
Gustavus shot 50.9% (28-55) from the field in the game as Augsburg shot 41.3% (26-63). Gustavus has now won four straight games against conference opponents, two of which have come in overtime. Other Gustavus leading scorers were Phil Wirtjes and Jesse Van Sickle who had 13 and 10 points, respectively.
The Gusties now have an overall record of 5-1, as Augsburg drops to 4-2 overall and 1-2 in the MIAC. Gustavus will host Bethany Lutheran College on Saturday at 3:00pm in St. Peter, Minn.