Volleyball Begins Weekend With 3-0 Victory Over Concordia

Posted on October 24th, 2014 by

Taylor Trautman rips a spike through a block in Friday night's 3-0 victory over Concordia. Photo courtesy of CJ Siewert - Sport PiX.

St. Peter, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus volleyball team earned a crucial victory over Concordia College by way of a 3-0 sweep on Friday night at Gus Young Court. The Gusties cruised to the win via set scores of 25-17, 25-17, and 25-22 to improve to 11-11 overall and 5-3 in the MIAC. With the loss, Concordia drops to 10-11 overall and 3-5 in the MIAC

“Our game plan was to be proactive and get off to a fast start because that is something that we’ve struggled with,” said Head Coach Rachelle Sherden. “Ever since the Augsburg match this team has been on a mission at practice and that really showed tonight.”

After trading points early, Gustavus began to take over halfway through the opening set. With a 12-11 lead, the Gusties went on a 7-to-2 scoring run that saw them grab a 19-13 advantage. Gustavus didn’t look back from there, holding on for an eight-point win to grab a 1-0 win in the match.

The second set played out much like the first. After Concordia scored six straight points to take a 13-12 lead, Gustavus responded with an 8-to-2 run that pushed its lead to 20-15. Concordia cut the gap to 21-17, but the home club scored four straight points to put the set away and take a 2-0 lead in the match.

The two teams went back-and-forth for nearly the entire third set. With the score knotted at 22-22, which was the 15th time score was tied throughout the set, Gustavus buckled down. Using a pair of Cobber attack errors and a Taylor Trautman (So., Hutchinson, Minn.) kill, the Gusties were able to score three consecutive points and take the set 25-22.

Gustavus students were out in full force in honor of Senior Night at Gus Young Court.

Gustavus students were out in full force in honor of Senior Night at Gus Young Court.

“The girls know how important these matches are and it was great to see us take care of business and put tonight’s match away in three, especially late in the season like this,” said Sherden. “We came into tonight with the mentality of staying in the moment – focusing on each and every point and putting our best effort towards that point. They responded well to that and our energy was consistent throughout the night.”

Gustavus end the match with a total of 42 kills and posted a team attack percentage over the .300 mark in the first and second set to finish the contest at .299. Concordia recorded 32 kills and finished with an attack percentage of .135.

Leading the Gustie offense for the third straight match was Alyssa Taylor (Jr., Trimont, Minn.). Taylor hit the floor with 11 kills and made just one error in 19 attempts for a .526 attack rate.

“Alyssa just doesn’t make a lot of mistakes and a lot of that has to do with her attitude,” commented Sherden about her junior middle hitter. “She’s a go-getter who wants every ball. Even if the set isn’t there, which didn’t happen a lot tonight, she’s done a great job making smart decisions and getting the other team out of its system with where she places it. The more she has played with Marissa the more comfortable she is and those two are right now clicking at the perfect time of the season.”

Janessa Jahnke (So., Blue Earth, Minn.) matched Taylor’s kill total with 11 and finished with a hitting percentage of .391. Trautman and Becca Woodstra (Jr., Minnetonka, Minn.) were next in line with six kills each.

Feeding Gustavus’s attackers was rookie Marisa Morgan (Fy., Rockford, Ill.) who totaled 30 assists and also had five aces. Senior Kendra Weege (Watertown, Minn.) also made an impact at the serving line with a match-high five aces.

Even though Abby Leitch (Fy., Mankato, Minn.) stood out with a match-high 20 digs, the scoresheet displayed a balanced defensive effort by Gustavus. Paige Breneman (Sr., Sherburn, Minn.), Morgan, and Weege all added eight digs to Leitch’s total.

“Although tonight was a big win, tomorrow is a new day and there is still a lot of volleyball to be played in the MIAC,” concluded Sherden. “A lot of scenarios can play out, so we can’t be satisfied and have to once again come out hungry tomorrow. The girls will get in the ice bath, get off their legs and get some sleep because Saturday afternoon is going to come quick.”

The Gustavus volleyball team will be back on its home court for the final time this regular season when it plays host to the College of Saint Benedict at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 25.

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