Volleyball Beats Hamline in Straight Sets

Posted on September 12th, 2018 by

Nora Holtan hammers down one of her nine kills. (photo courtesy of David Faulkner, SPX Sports)

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SAINT PETER, Minn. – The No. 9 Gustavus volleyball team Wednesday began conference play with a straight-set victory over Hamline. The Gusties won by scores of 25-15, 25-14, and 25-23 to improve to 8-1 overall and 1-0 in the MIAC.

“We’ve been working really hard on maintaining our focus, and that can be hard when you consider it being the home opener in front of a big crowd,” Head Coach Rachelle Sherden said. “We did that really well in the first two sets and let up just a little in the third. But credit to Hamline, they started blocking well and were super scrappy.”

Nora Holtan (Sr., Rochester, Minn.) proved why she’s the reigning two-time MIAC MVP by making her presence felt all over the court. She led the team in assists (28) and digs (11), and was one kill shy of a triple-double. Holtan had just one attack error in 13 attempts for a blistering .615 hitting percentage. Lauren Hanson (Sr., Redwood Falls, Minn.) posted a team-best 11 kills and hit at a .304 clip.

The Gusties took the first point of the opening frame and never trailed. Hamline tied the score twice early on, but a 9-2 run midway through created enough separation. The Pipers claimed the first point in the second before a 4-1 rally by the home squad gave it a lead it would not relinquish.

Hamline did not go quietly in the third, keeping the margin within three points throughout and tying the score at 22-22. Gustavus was able to claim three of the final four points to complete the sweep.

The Gusties tallied five services aces and hit .220 percent on the attack.

“I thought our serving was really strong,” Sherden said. “It makes it so much easier for us when we get any team out of system. Our passing was outstanding as well. Nora did a really good job of keeping the defense guessing by spreading the offense and being aggressive herself.”

Gustavus next competes in UW-Eau Claire’s Sandy Schumacher Memorial Tournament Friday and Saturday. The Gusties start with host UW-Eau Claire at 7 p.m. Friday.

 

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