The Gustavus volleyball team battled #10 St. Thomas for four sets, but after the Gusties won the first set 28-26, the Tommies won the next three sets by the scores of 25-21, 25-23, 25-20 and claimed the match 3-1. The Gusties made things interesting with impressive play at the net, and some solid back row defense, but when the Tommies needed to close out points at the end of a set, they found a way. The result was not what Gustavus was hoping for, but left cause for optimism as this young team has played three nationally ranked conference opponents (#22 Concordia, #16 St. Ben’s, and #10 St. Thomas) very competitively over the past week posting a record of 1-2.
The Tommies jumped out to a 10-3 lead in the first set, and that seven-point lead, was the biggest lead held by either team at any point in the match. Trailing 17-11, the Gusties outscored the Tommies 7-3 to pull within two at 20-18. St. Thomas had set points at 24-23 and 25-24, but Gustavus tied the set at 26-26 and then Janey Helland registered back-to-back kills that allowed the Gusties to win the first set 28-26.
In the second set, the score was tied 18-18, but the Tommies countered with a 7-3 run to win the set by a score of 25-21. In the third set, the score was tied 22-22 and then St. Thomas three of the next four points to post the 25-23 win and take a 2-1 advantage in sets. In the fourth set, the score was tied at 16-16, but the Tommies used a 4-0 run to take a 20-16 lead and never looked back on their way to winning the set 25-20 and the match 3-1.
Gustavus was led on the attack by Angela Ahrendt with 13 kills and Meghan Gehring with 11. Malea Noennig contributed 41 assists and Nicki Ainsworth compiled 15 digs.
Gustavus will close out its season at home on Saturday with a match against Saint Mary’s at 3:00 pm.