The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference volleyball coaches recently released their 2006 Post-Season Awards and three Gustavus players were honored for their outsanding play over the past season. Junior Andrea Kron (Cold Spring, Minn.) and Jen Thelemann (Le Sueur, Minn.) were named to the all-conference team, while sophomore Emily Klein (Red Wing, Minn.) was named Co-Defensive Player of the Year.
Kron and Thelemann had breakout seasons for the Gusties as the dynamic duo combined for 801 kills on the season, which was more than any other outside hitting combination at Gustavus since Katie Olstad and Jen Churchich combined for 877 kills in 1993. Thelemann finished the season eighth in the MIAC in kills per game at 4.07 and Kron was right behind her in ninth place at 4.02 kills per game.
Kron, who became the 11th player at Gustavus to compile 1,000 career kills in the final regular season match at St. Mary’s, led the team in kills with 410. Her 410 kills is the fifth highest single season total in school history and the most since Liz Fell totalled 433 kills in 1995. The junior from ROCORI High School in Cold Spring, also led the team in kills per game at 3.94 and attack percentage at .259. She was named to the All-Tournament Team at the Pikes Peak Classic in early September. Kron was also named to the MIAC All-Sportsmanship team.
Thelemann finished second on the team in kills with 391 and second in total blocks with 87. She was also third on the team in service aces with 24. The junior from Le Sueur-Henderson High School currently ranks 17th on the all-time kill list at Gustavus with 776 kills. Thelemann was selected as the MIAC Hitter of the Week on October 4 and she was named to the All-Tournament Team at the Sugarloaf Classic in early September.
Klein, a sophomore libero from Red Wing, Minn., was a real key for the Gusties in the back row. The two-year starter shattered several significant school records including digs in a game with 46 against St. Ben’s, digs in a season with 648 (the previous mark of 630 was set by Linn Erickson in 1985), and she became the first player in Gustavus volleyball history to compile 1,000 digs in her first two seasons of competition. She currently ranks second in career kills with 1,067 and she needs 160 digs next season to become the all-time digs leader at Gustavus.
Gustavus finished in second place in the MIAC regular season standings with a record of 9-2. The Gusties earned the second seed in the MIAC Post-Season Tournament and received a first round bye. The team fell to St. Ben’s 3-1 in a semifinal match. Gustavus posted a record of 18-9 overall.