The Gustavus women’s basketball team defeated Carleton by the score of 71-61 on Saturday afternoon in Northfield, Minn. Molly Geske led the Gusties in scoring with a game-high 21 points, going 8-for-12 from the field. Molly Mathiowetz recorded her second double-double of the season with 13 points and 10 rebounds. With the victory, Gustavus improves to 13-8 overall and 12-6 in the MIAC, while Carleton falls to 5-15 overall and 4-13 in the MIAC.
Gustavus shot 43.8-percent (28-64) from the field, 40-percent (4-10) from three point range, and 68.8-percent (11-16) from the free throw line in the game. Carleton shot 48-percent (24-50) from the field, 33.3-percent (4-12) from three, and 90-percent (9-10) at the line. Gustavus outrebounded the Knights 38-to-27, including a season-high 19 boards on the offensive end.
A layup by Abby Rothenbuehler at the 14:09 mark of the first half sparked an 11-0 Gustavus scoring run that put the Gusties up 22-8 with just under nine minutes left in the half. The lead would be Gustavus’ largest of the game. The Knights battled back to bring the score to within three points (28-25) at halftime, following a 9-2 run in the final five minutes of the frame.
Carleton’s Emma Purfeerst led all scorers in the first half, going a perfect 6-for-6 from the field for 12 points. Geske led the Gusties with eight points, while Ava Perry went 2-for-2 from three point range to add six points. Carleton outshot Gustavus 42.9 to 40.6-percent from the floor in the opening half.
The Gusties would go up by 11 points (36-25) following a strong start to the second half in which they scored on four of their first five possessions. The Knights would not go quietly, using an 11-2 run to battle back and cut the lead to two at 38-36 with 13:38 left to play. Carleton was able to cut the Gustavus lead to two points on three occasions with under seven minutes to play, yet the Gusties ceased to let the Knights tie the game, scoring on the ensuing possession on all three occasions.
Carleton threatened one last time at the 3:32 mark when Jenny Ramey cut the lead to four (59-55) with a three pointer. Mathiowetz hit a layup and was fouled on the following possession, heading to the line and converting the three-point-play to put Gustavus back up 62-57. A three pointer by Kelsey Florian at 2:25 (65-57) all but sealed the deal, as Gustavus went 6-for-6 at the free throw line in the final 1:02.
Molly Geske and Colleen Ruane both scored in double-figures in the second half. Geske scored 13 points on 4-of-6 shooting, while Ruane turned in another strong second half performance with 10 points, going 5-for-7 from the floor. Ruane would also finish with a game-high five steals and a team-high four assists. Despite being outshot 54.5 to 46.9-percent in the second half, Gustavus won the turnover battle 5-to-12, committing just two in the final 10 minutes.
The Gustavus women’s basketball team will be off on Monday, but will be in action next on Wednesday, Feb. 9, against St. Catherine in St. Paul at 7:30 p.m.