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Gust leaving Tigers to coach Minn. Crookston

After six years of heading the Dakota Wesleyan University baseball program, Steve Gust will take his expertise elsewhere.

Gust accepted the head coaching position at the University of Minnesota Crookston, an NCAA Division II school that competes in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.

“The more years I’ve been at DWU, the more I’ve fallen in love with the school and community,” Gust said Tuesday. “The decision was based upon my family. I have family in the area and it’s time to be around them.”

In six seasons with DWU, Gust went 154-157, including a 27-24 record in his final season. The Tigers were the fifth seed in the Great Plains Athletic Conference postseason tournament this year and finished second after falling to Midland University in the championship.

In his first two seasons, Gust won 30 or more games and led his Tiger squad to a 35-18 record in 2009, a GPAC tournament title and the program’s first-ever appearance in the opening round of the NAIA World Series.

Gust coached 48 all-GPAC players, including one pitcher of the year and one player of the year.

"The one thing I’m most proud of is I think we got the program to where it needs to be,” Gust said. “I think we have quality kids in our program, not only good baseball players but good people.”

Crookston went 1-47 overall and 0-36 in the NSIC this season and Gust is looking forward to building his program.

“It’s an opportunity that I’m excited about,” Gust said. “It’s not going to be easy, but I’m really looking forward to what we can do there.”

Brooke Cersosimo
Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.