Men’s Basketball Wins Second Straight With 61-43 Victory Over Macalester

Posted on January 19th, 2015 by

Chris Narum sparked the Gusties with 10 points, including four off of his own steals, in a 61-43 victory over Macalester on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy of C.J. Siewert, SPX Sports)

ST. PETER, MINN. – After leading by only one point at halftime, the Gustavus Adolphus men’s basketball team went on a 31-7 second half run in its 61-43 victory over Macalester College on Monday at Gus Young Court. The win gives Gustavus a 6-3 record in conference play and puts them at 10-4 overall, while Macalester falls to 1-8 in the MIAC and 4-10 overall.

“Overall it was a strong effort for our team,” said head coach Mark Hanson. “The second half was much better for us. We moved the ball better and created better shots. I thought we stood and watched a little bit too much on offense in the first half. When we defended well, we made stops and when we made fundamental errors, they scored. I usually don’t like to think of things that simply, but that was the case tonight.”

The Gusties got out to a quick 5-0 lead, before the Scots raced to a 13-4 run to tie the game at 9-9 at the 14:09 mark and take a 13-9 lead 10 minutes into the game. The Scots’ pressure on the Gustavus post players forced the Gusties into eight first half turnovers and out of their typical inside play. Macalester led 17-11 with 8:02 remaining in the first half, before Gustavus was able to go on a 9-2 run that gave the home team the lead back at 20-19. The Scots would retake a 23-22 lead when Kareem Ismail scored two of his 10 first half points with 3:21 left to play in the opening frame. But Gustavus came back to take a narrow one point (28-27) advantage into halftime.

Following the break, Macalester briefly retook a one point lead (31-30) at 18:10, but Gustavus then went on a 31-7 run over the next 14 and a half minutes to take a 61-38 lead with 3:43 left to play. The run was capped by an Isaac Tapp (Sr. Stewartville, Minn.) steal and thunderous two-handed dunk that energized the Gustie bench and crowd.

“I think holding them to 16 second half points probably sounds more impressive then it actually might be, mainly because we allowed them to shoot 45 percent in the first half,” said Hanson. “We’ve talked about the need to play a full 40 minutes and again, I’m not sure that was the case tonight. Our energy was much better in the second half, and I think a lot of that is because our energy on offense was better. It’s amazing what a few made layups can do for your offense and they can really help overall confidence levels as well.”

The Gustie defense limited their opponent to 40 percent shooting or less for the fourth game in a row, as the Scots shot an even 40 percent in the game (16-of-40). Chad Poppen (Jr., St. Peter, Minn.) led the Gustie scoring attack with 12 points on 4-of-5 shooting, and Brody Ziegler (Jr., Mankato, Minn.) added eight points on 3-of-6 shooting and a team-leading nine rebounds. Chris Narum (Jr., Eagan, Minn.) also chipped in 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting and two steals. Gustavus dominated the boards, holding a 34-13 advantage.

Ismail led the Scots with 16 points on 7-for-13 shooting. He also had a team-high five rebounds.

Monday’s game was the last of a three-game home stand for Gustavus. The Gusties will now embark on a three-game road trip, with their next game taking place on Wednesday against Bethel University. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. in Arden Hills.

“Bethel is a very good team,” said Hanson. “They’re a tough team to guard because they’ve got quickness at pretty much every position, they’ve got one of the best overall players in the league and they just have a number of weapons. They play very fast and we’re going to need to be ready for a big challenge, especially with it being at their place.”

Gustavus 61, Macalester 43 (Box Score) | Photo Gallery



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