The Gustavus women’s volleyball team improved its record to 7-3 on the season with a 3-1 win over Martin Luther College at home on Monday night. The Gusties lost game one 25-30, but then rallied to win the next three games (30-23, 30-18, 30-22) to win the match. Jennifer Thelemann led the Gustavus attack with 19 kills.
In game one, Gustavus held an early 5-4 lead, but then Martin Luther four straights points to take an 8-4 lead. The Knights would not relinquish the lead the rest of the game. The Gusties rallied late and pulled within one at 23-22, but Martin Luther reeled off three straight points to take a 26-22 lead and then held on to take game one 30-25.
In game two, the Gusties jumped out to an 8-3 lead and never looked back as they evened the match with a 30-23 win. Martin Luther closed the lead to three at 18-15, however Gustavus countered four straight points to extend the lead to six at 21-15. The Knights could get no closer than five points the rest of the way.
In game three, Gustavus got off to a slow start and trailed 11-8, however the Gusties scored 12 of the next 14 points to take a commanding 23-13 lead. Martin Luther would get no closer than 10 points the rest of the way as Gustavus claimed game three 30-18.
In game four, the Gusties closed out the match by outscoring the Knights 30-22. The early part of the final game was very close and the score was tied at 18-18. Gustavus surged ahead with four consecutive points to take a 22-18 lead. The Gusties extended their lead to 26-22 and then scored the final four points to win game four 30-22 and the match 3-1.
Four Gustavus players recorded double digit digs including Bridget Burtzel (Jr., Cold Spring, Minn.) with 15, Emily Klein (So., Red Wing, Minn.) with 14, and Jessica Plemel (Jr., Owatonna, Minn.) and Jessi Weber (Fy., Osceola, Wis.) with 11 each. Plemel turned in a strong all-around performance with 11 digs, 6 kills, 8 service aces, and 5 total blocks.
Two players registered double digit kills including Jennifer Thelemann (Jr., LeSueur, Minn.) with 19 and Andrea Kron (Jr., Cold Spring, Minn.) with 16.
As a team, the Gusties recorded a season-high 16 service aces.
Senior middle hitter Becca Thompson (Sr., Mankato, Minn./West) reached a milestone in the contest as she recorded eight kills pushing her career kill total to 506. Thompson becomes the 30th player in the history of the Gustavus women’s volleyball program to compile 500 career kills.
The Gusties will open MIAC play on Wednesday when they host Hamline at Gus Young Court. The match will start at 7:00 pm.