NORTHFIELD, Minn. -- Despite three players with double-digit scoring performances, including senior Taylor Hanson’s (St. Paul, Minn./Minnehaha Academy) game-high 23 points to match with his seven rebounds, the Carleton College men’s basketball team’s second-half comeback fell just short, 62-57, against the visitors from Gustavus Adolphus College.
Plagued by turnovers and missed opportunities, the Knights (9-12, 7-9 MIAC) trailed 32-19 at intermission as the visiting Gusties (14-8, 11-6 MIAC) shot 54 percent in the first half.
Carleton, however, started the second half on an impressive 11-0 run over the opening five minutes of the second half. The Knight defense kept Gustavus scoreless over the first nine possessions of the half. Meanwhile, Carleton finally started to get some shots to fall, hitting on four-of their first-seven attempts from the field in the period, including a big three-pointer from Peter Bakker-Arkema (Fy./Ann Arbor, Mich./Skyline), who scored 12 on the afternoon. The run concluded with four consecutive points by Tianen Chen (Fy./Germantown Hills, Ill./Metamora Twp), bringing the Knights within 32-30 with 15:21 remaining.
The teams exchanged mini-runs, and it was still a two-point game after Bakker-Arkema converted a free-throw with 2:45 to play. But unfortunately for the home squad, that was as close as they were able to get.
Gustavus’ Brian Jacobs knocked down a huge three-pointer to respond to the Knights’ narrowing of the advantage, and after a pair of Hanson free-throws, Jacobs hit a tough baseline jumper to secure a five-point lead with just 1:29 stlll to play. The visitors knocked down enough attempts from the charity stripe down the stretch to hold on for a 62-57 win.
After getting off to extremely hot starts in back-to-back victories, the Knights shot just 35 percent from the field in the opening period with nine turnovers, creating the double-digit halftime deficit that proved too difficult to overcome.
Shane McSparron (Jr./Apple Valley, Minn./Eastview) was the third Knight id double figures, going 5-of-9 from the field for 12 points.
Martin Feddersen paced the Gusties with 17 points, five assists, and four steals. Jordan Dick contributed 14 points, and Jacobs added 13 points.
The Knights will look to put the loss behind them quickly as they travel to Concordia-Moorhead to face the Cobbers on Monday, Feb. 10. Live audio of both ends of the women’s/men’s doubleheader will be available on KDHL 920AM and Knights Online.