Men’s Basketball Unable To Hold Late Lead, Falls To UM-Morris 76-71 Posted on December 30th, 2017 by


ST. PETER, Minn. – Saturday’s men’s basketball non-conference tilt between Gustavus and Minnesota-Morris went down to the wire, but the home squad was unable to hold on to a late lead after making an 11-point comeback, losing 76-71. The Gusties led 71-70 with 2:15 to play in the game before the Cougars scored six unanswered points to close out the game. Gustavus moves to 6-4 overall, while UM-Morris improves to 4-7.

The Gusties started the game with a 13-8 lead after five minutes of play, but the Cougars responded with a 10-2 run to take the lead at the 10:21 mark. The two teams traded the lead four more times in the first half before the visitors finished the frame on a 13-3 run for a 38-30 advantage at the break.

UM-Morris had its largest lead of the game at 53-42 with 12:28 to play, but the Gusties would not lie down. With 8:07 on the clock, Zach Bloemker (Fy., Marshall, Minn.) hit a three to spark a 16-4 run, resulting in a 68-65 Gustie lead with 3:33 to play. The Cougars replied with five unanswered points to regain the lead before another three by Bloemker gave the Gusties a 71-70 lead with 2:15 to play. From that point on the Gusties missed their final five shots, while the Cougars made one shot from the floor and four free throws.

Gustavus shot 42.4 percent from the floor, while the Cougars shot 49.1 percent. There were 64 total three-pointers taken in the game with the Gusties going 13-for-33 and the Cougars 11-for-31.

Bloemker led the Gusties with a career-high 24 points, including 7-of-12 from beyond the arc. Vannis Smith (Crystal Lake, Ill.) and Jason Faul (Sr., Prior Lake, Minn.) added 13 and 12 points, respectively.

Gustavus returns to conference action at 7 p.m. Wednesday, hosting Carleton.


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