The Gustavus volleyball team kept their hopes for a berth in the MIAC Playoffs alive Wednesday night with a 3-1 victory over Macalester in St. Peter.
The Gusties played with the lead throughout much of game one. Following a tie at 14-14, Gustavus outscored the Scots, 8-3, and took a 22-17 lead. The Gusties would maintain the lead, taking game one by a score of 30-25.
Gustavus jumped out to a 14-7 lead in game two, but saw the Scots surge back to tie the score at 20-20. The teams would trade the lead back and forth before a kill by Gustavus’ Jessica Plemel tied the score for the final time at 28-28. A kill by Sonia Muzikarova would give the Scots the serve and a 29-28 lead. A kill by Lauren Eberhart would allow Macalester to tie the match at one game apiece with the 30-28 victory. Gustavus out-hit the Scots in game two, .340 to .280, but gave up serve four times on service errors.
The Scots would use the momentum gained from the game two victory to take an 18-9 lead in game three. During that stretch, Eberhart picked up three service aces, including two in a row following a Gustavus timeout. The Gusties would slowly chip away at the lead, taking eight of the final nine points to win game three, 30-27.
Gustavus took control of game four early, jumping out to a 20-11 lead. The Scots could get no closer than nine points down the stretch, though, eventually falling by a 30-20 score. In game four, the Gusties registered a .340 attack percentage, committing only two attack errors.
Muzikarova led all players with 20 kills, while Eberhart added 18 for the Scots. Becca Thompson (Jr., Mankato, Minn.) and Jennifer Thelemann (Soph., Le Sueur, Minn.) led five Gusties in double-figures with 17 kills apiece. Junior Jessica Plemel (Owatonna, Minn.) added 13 kills and a team-high 24 digs for Gustavus.
The Gusties improved to 13-11 overall and 4-6 in the MIAC with the win, while the Scots dropped to 10-16, 3-6 in the MIAC. Gustavus is idle until next Wednesday when they close out the regular season with a home match against Saint Mary’s. The Scots finish out their regular season schedule with road matches against Augsburg (Friday) and Bethel (Wednesday).