Volleyball Claims MIAC Title Outright, Tops Hamline In Four Sets

Posted on October 28th, 2015 by

Alyssa Taylor connects for one of her 12 kills against Hamline. (photo courtesy of Nick Campbell, Gustavus sports information)


ST. PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus volleyball team claimed the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference regular season championship outright Wednesday night as it defeated Hamline University in four sets 25-19, 25-27, 25-19 and 25-23. The conference title is Gustavus’ first since 1986 and fifth overall. The Gusties also extended their program record win streak to 24 matches and now own a 24-2 overall record with a 10-0 mark in the MIAC.

“I don’t think that this accomplishment will hit me until later in the season because I am so focused already on what we are going to do in practice tomorrow,” Head Coach Rachelle Sherden said. “But it is a big deal and I am incredibly proud of the team. The support from the fans, all the parents and the staff here has been awesome. We want to keep this going as long as we possibly can and this team has such strong chemistry. Nothing is guaranteed after Saturday so we need to stay in the moment and enjoy our time together.”

The Gusties also honored their four seniors before the game and each of them contributed to the victory.

“It’s hard to even put it in words,” Sherden said of what the seniors bring to the team. “They have been through a lot the last three seasons, it’s been up and down. After last season they made the decision they were going to go out with a bang and they have been the best leaders that we could ever have for this team. They are walking the talk and have done such a great job.”

Taylor Trautman (Jr., Hutchinson, Minn.) led the Gustie offense with a career-high 18 kills on 31 attempts and three errors for an attack percentage of .484. Trautman also tallied 10 digs for a double-double. Alyssa Taylor (Sr., Trimont, Minn.) and Becca Woodstra (Sr., Minnetonka, Minn.) also reached double digit kills with 12 and 10, respectively. Nora Holtan (Fy., Rochester, Minn.) recorded her 11th double-double of the season with a match-high 43 assists along with 13 digs. Brittany Luethmers (Fy., Prior Lake, Minn.) led the defense with 19 digs.

Hamline was not fazed by the prospect of facing the top team in the conference and started the first set with a 5-1 lead, which it didn’t let go of until the Gusties crawled back midway through the frame to take a 15-13 advantage. The Pipers regained the lead twice at 17-16 and 18-17, but Gustavus closed out the set on an 8-2 run for the win.

The two squads battled back and forth to start the second set with a 10-10 tie. Gustavus then scored five consecutive points and made it all the way to set-point with a 24-20 lead, but the Pipers would not go quietly and ended up going on a 7-1 run for the comeback win.

Gustavus reversed the momentum early in the third set, jumping out to a 7-2 lead to force a Hamline timeout. The Pipers would get within three points at 17-14, but that was the closest margin as the Gusties won by six points.

Hamline held the advantage early in the fourth set at 5-3, but the Gusties took six of the next seven points for a 9-6 lead. The Pipers regained the lead five different times in the next 18 volleys, but the final lead change was in favor of the Gusties as they went ahead 18-17 and never looked back. Trautman put an emphatic stamp on the victory with a pair of hard-hitting kills to end the match.

“Any team in the MIAC is always going to play tough, especially now that we may have a target on our back,” Sherden said. “I thought that our girls were a little bit flat but ended up pulling it out in the end.”

Gustavus closes out the regular season at 3 p.m. Saturday against Saint Mary’s (19-8, 8-2 MIAC).



  1. gretchen koehler says:

    Such an awesome season keep on rolling and buzzing

  2. Bill says:

    Congrats to the Gustie v-ball team on a great conference win…keep it rolling!!! Go Gusties