2003 Volleyball Preview

Posted on August 27th, 2003 by

After missing the 2002 MIAC Playoffs by the narrowest of margins on the final day of the regular season, the Gustavus volleyball team returns with its sights set clearly on qualifying for postseason play in 2003. The Gusties return all six starters including second team all-conference setter Rachel Batalden (junior), second team all-conference outside hitter Jessica Schaetzke (senior), middle hitters Anne Osthus (sophomore) and Nicole Nesseth (senior), rightside hitter Tara Houlihan (sophomore) and defensive specialist Jennifer Tischer (junior). Schaetzke led the Gusties in kills with 346. She finished the season ranked eighth in the MIAC in kills per game with an average of 3.36. Batalden led the team in set assists with 919 and games played with 87. She finished the season ranked fourth in the MIAC in assists per game at 11.0 and 42nd in Division III at 10.56 per game.
In addition, the team returns veteran defensive specialist Pat Lawton (senior), outside hitter Sheila Rodel (junior) and defensive specialist Sue Dailey (junior). All three played regularly last season and will provide excellent depth this year. Sophomore Kristi Forsythe, who played on the junior varsity squad last season, has looked very good in the preseason and looks ready to contribute regularly as an outside hitter. Two newcomers also appear ready to contribute including first year setter Rachelle Jakobs (Montevideo, Minn.) and first year middle hitter Jami Moseng (Montevideo, Minn.).
Consistency will be the key to how far this year’s squad will go. Last season, the Gusties started the year 6-9 before winning seven of their next eight matches to finish with a mark of 13-13 overall and 6-5 in the MIAC (Seventh). One more victory would have put the team in the six-team MIAC Playoffs. Head coach Kari Eckheart commented, “This group was really disappointed by missing the playoffs last year and it has motivated them to get better in the off-season. ” Eckheart feels that this team has a good mix of veterans and youth with several of the newcomers pushing the veterans for playing time. She added, “Our offense should be solid with the return of the majority of our front line as well as all-conference setter Rachel Batalden. My concern is our passing and defense. We will need several of our veteran back row players to step up and fill the spot vacated by Steph Siekman if we expect to reach our goals of finishing in the top four in the league and qualifying for the playoffs.”

2002 Statistics

General Information
Name: Gustavus Adolphus College
Location: St. Peter, Minn.
Founded: 1862
Enrollment: 2,540
Nickname: Golden Gusties
School Colors: Black and Gold
Home Facilities: Gus Young Court in Lund Arena
Affiliation: NCAA Div. III
President: Jim Peterson
Athletic Director: Al Molde
Athletic Phone: (507) 933-7617

First year of volleyball: 1969
NCAA Tournament Appearances: 3
Last NCAA Tournament / Result: 1986 / Defeated St. Benedict, Lost to Elmurst

Sports Information
Sports Info Director: Tim Kennedy
Work Phone: (507) 933-7647
Email: timgasid@gustavus.edu
Assistant Sports Info Director: Nick Huber
SID Fax: (507) 933-8412
Web site: http://www.gustavus.edu/oncampus/athletics/vb/

Coaching Staff
Head Coach: Kari Eckheart
Alma Mater / Year: Iowa State / 1995
Year at Gustavus: Seventh
Head Coach’s office phone: (507) 933-7632
Assistant Coaches: Mickey Haller, Shanda Ness

Player Information

Key Returnees
Rachel Batladen, JR, S, Lamberton, MN (All-MIAC, 3rd-year starter as JR, 919 assists)
Jessica Schaetzke, SR, OH, New Ulm, MN (All-Conference, 346 kills, 29 blocks)
Nicole Nesseth, SR, MH, Windom, MN (216 kills, 60 blocks)
Tara Houlihan, SO, OH, Sioux Falls, SD (319 digs, 211 kills, 39 service aces)

All Returning Letterwinners
Rachel Batalden (JR, S, 5-7, Lamberton, MN)
Anna Claussen (SR, RH, 5-9, Benson, MN)
Sue Dailey (JR, S/DS, 5-3, Owatonna, MN)
Tara Houlihan (SO, OH, 5-8, Sioux Falls, SD)
Pat Lawton (SR, DS, 5-6, Mahtomedi, MN)
Nicole Nesseth (SR, MH, 5-10, Windom, MN)
Anne Osthus (SO, MH, 5-10, Olivia, MN)
Sheila Rodel (JR, RH, 5-10, Bird Island, MN)
Jessica Schaetzke (SR, OH, 5-10. New Ulm, MN)

Letterwinners Lost
Stephanie Siekman
Kristin Kachelmyer

Key Newcomers
Katie Hendrickson (FY, RH, 5-9, Lennox, SD)
Rachelle Jakobs (FY, S, 5-5, Montevideo, MN)
Kristin Kaplan (FY, MH, 5-11, Owatonna, MN)
Brianna Monahan (FY, MH, 6-0, Hutchinson, MN)
Jami Moseng (FY, MH, 5-10, Montevideo, MN)
Christy Pakola (FY, OH, 5-10, Willmar, MN)
Jessica Plemel (FY, OH, 5-9, Owatonna, MN)

Letterwinners returning: Total: 9
Letterwinners lost: Total: 2
Starters Returning: 6
Starters Lost: 0

2003 Schedule
8/29-30 @ Haverford Invite
9/5-6 Gustavus Classic
9/9 UM-Morris
9/12-13 @ Hamline Tournament
9/17 @ Bethel
9/19 Macalester
9/24 St. Olaf
9/27 St. Thomas
9/30 North Central
10/1 @ St. Catherine
10/7 @ Martin Luther
10/10 @ Carleton
10/15 Augsburg
10/17 @ Concordia
10/18 @ St. Benedict
10/22 Hamline
10/25 Gustavus Triangular
10/29 St. Mary’s

2002 Results
8/30 Washington University L 0-3
8/30 Colorado College L 0-3
8/31 Central L 0-3
8/31 Whitworth L 0-3
9/6 UPPER IOWA W 3-0
9/7 VITERBO W 3-0
9/13 Luther W 3-0
9/14 St. Catherine W 3-0
9/14 Northwestern L 1-3
9/25 St. Olaf L 1-3
9/27 St. Thomas L 0-3
9/28 Hamline W 3-0
10/2 AUGSBURG W 3-0
10/9 CARLETON W 3-1
10/11 CONCORDIA W 3-1
10/12 ST. BENEDICT W 3-1
10/15 North Central W 3-0
10/16 St. Catherine W 3-0
10/23 Bethel L 0-3
10/26 UW-STOUT L 0-3
10/30 St. Mary’s L 2-3


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