The Gustavus volleyball team defeated Bethel University 3-0 (30-25, 30-19, 30-22) in St. Peter on Wednesday night. The victory broke a string of nine consecutive losses to the Royals dating back to 1995. The Gusties improved to 8-3 overall and 1-0 in the MIAC, while Bethel fell to 3-8 overall and 0-1 in MIAC play. Andrea Kron and Tara Houlihan led the Gustavus attack with 14 kills each.
The match started slowly for Gustavus, as Coach Kari Eckheart’s squad trailed 9-3 in the first game before rallying to tie the match at 16-16. The Gusties took the lead for good at 19-18 before eventually claiming game one at 30-25.
The second game started identically to game one as Bethel pulled out to a 7-3 lead. However, the Gustavus attack caught fire, scoring 12 of the next 17 points to take a 15-12 lead. The Gusties never looked back in claiming the 30-19 win.
In game three, the Gusties changed the trend of the first two games jumping out to a 6-3 lead. However, the end result was the same as Coach Kari Eckheart’s squad completed the three-game sweep by winning game three 30-22.
Besides leading the Gusties in kills, junior Tara Houlihan contributed 13 digs and recorded all three game-winning kills in the match. Senior libero Sue Dailey led the defense by tallying 18 digs.
Bethel was led offensively by Lisa Otto and Kari Eakins with eight kills each. Royal’s setter Katie Snyder recorded 30 assists on the night.
Wednesday night’s win marks the sixth straight win for the Gusties. Gustavus will head to the Carleton Classic this Friday and Saturday before resuming conference play next Wednesday at St. Olaf.