St. Peter, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus volleyball team will travel to Northfield, Minn. on Wednesday for an MIAC contest against St. Olaf College set to begin at 7:00 p.m. At 7-9 overall and 2-2 in the MIAC, the Gusties enter Wednesday’s match coming off a 3-1 win over Macalester on Saturday at Gus Young Court. St. Olaf heads into the match at 6-10 overall and 1-3 in the MIAC after suffering a 3-0 loss to St. Thomas on Saturday at home in the Skoglund Center.
The St. Olaf Sports Information Department will provide live video for Wednesday’s match.
Last Time Out – The Gustavus volleyball team got back on the winning track and snapped a two-match losing-skid with a 3-1 win over Macalester College at Gus Young Court on Saturday aternoon. Three Gusties finished with double-figure kills and three more finished with double-figure digs in one of the team’s best all-around performances of the season.
Leading what was a balanced offensive attack was Sarah Schuetz (So., Eagan, Minn.) and Kelle Nett (So., Spring Valley, Ill.) who both hit the floor with 11 kills. Schuetz, whose kill total was a season-best, hit at a rate of .304, while Nett posted an attack percentage of .194. Also tallying double-figure kills was Emily Gilman (Maple Grove, Minn.) with a season-best 10 along with a .333 hitting percentage. Gustavus posted a team attack rate .228, going over the .200-mark for the first time in two matches.
The defense also had one of its best outings of the year by registering 73 digs, which is the team’s second-best performance to date. Becca Woodstra (So., Maple Grove, Minn.) led the effort with a season-high 17 digs to go with nine kills. Paige Breneman (Jr., Sherburn, Minn.) and Haley Zweber (Fy., Rosemount, Minn.) rounded out the team’s defensive showing with 16 and 12 digs, respectively.
The Series – Wednesday’s match will serve as the 60th meeting between Gustavus and St. Olaf on the volleyball court. The Oles hold the advantage in the all-time series with a record of 34-24-1. In their meeting last season in Northfield, the Oles walked off the court with an exciting 3-2 victory. After St. Olaf took the opening set 25-22, Gustavus answered with a 25-22 win in set two. The Oles grabbed a 2-1 lead with a 25-18 win in the third, yet the Gusties were able to tie the match with a 25-20 win in the fourth. St. Olaf prevailed in the fifth, scoring three straight points to win the frame 15-13.
Switching Up The O – Looking to shake things up and snap a two-match dry-spell, Head Coach Rachelle Sherden changed her offensive strategy against Macalester on Saturday afternoon. Sherden went to a 6-2 offense and used both Taylor Meurer (Jr., Nicollet, Minn.) and Kendra Weege (Jr., Watertown, Minn.) to set. The move paid off and Gustavus tallied its third-best kill total of the year with 56 and its second-best assist total with 51. Meurer and Weege both accounted for 21 of the team’s assists in the match.
Scouting The Oles – The St. Olaf volleyball team has run into a string of bad fortune as of late, entering Wednesday’s contest in the midst of a three-match losing-streak. After suffering a pair of losses on their home court to Augsburg (3-0) on Wednesday and St. Thomas (3-0) on Saturday, the Oles will look to right the ship and cap a three-match home-stretch with a victory against Gustavus.
In their past two losses, the Oles have posted attack percentages of under the .100 mark. So far this season, St. Olaf ranks 11th in the league in hitting percentage (.171) and 10th in kills per set (11.09).
Leading the offense with 183 total kills (5th/MIAC) is Kelly Heissel. Heissel averages 3.52 kills per set (4th/MIAC) with a .162 attack percentage. Behind her sits Maggie Prunty who has 127 kills (2.31 kps) and a team-best attack rate of .279.
St. Olaf heads into the match with four players who have recorded over 100 digs on the year. Abby Slack leads the group with 194 digs overall, ranking her 12th in the league. Following Slack is Megan Bauer with 130, Prunty with 122, and Keissel with 108.
The Oles have deviated little from their primary setter, Kersten Bork. Bork has shelled out a total of 507 assists (5th/MIAC) for an average of 9.75 assists per set (4th/MIAC).