Volleyball Defeats No. 10 Aurora and North Central (Ill.) to Finish Weekend 4-0

Posted on August 31st, 2019 by

ELMHURST, Ill. – After slow starts to both matches on Friday, the Gustavus volleyball team responded with two strong performances Saturday defeating No. 10 Aurora 3-0 and North Central (Ill.) 3-1 improving to 4-0 on the season.

On the weekend, Head Coach Rachelle Sherden said, “I thought overall it was a good start. There’s a lot to build from and I’m excited about the potential of this team. They are a fierce group with solid fundamentals and eagerness to learn. We look forward to getting back after it in the gym next week. The chemistry is strong and at moments it seems like they have been playing together a lot longer than a couple weeks.”

Gustavus 3 – 0 Aurora

The young Gustavus squad started their morning off on the right foot, taking down No. 10 Aurora 3-0. After slow starts to their first set yesterday, the Gusties jumped out early taking the first set 25-15. The set was highlighted when Gustavus led 19-14 before Rhyan Herrmann (Fy., Brownton, Minn.) tallied three-straight service aces to all but put the set away.

Set number two was a much more back and forth battle with six lead changes. With the Gusties trailing 19-17, Hailey Embacher (Jr., Mankato, Minn.) put up two service aces of her own to even things up before a Kaikea Welsh (So., Kansas City, Mo.) kill gave the Gusties the lead. The Spartans would even things up at 22 but the Gusties would nab three of the last four points with kills to take the set.

The service ace once again proved well for Gustavus in set three, with the Gusties trailing 11-9, they used three service aces, as well as five kills as part of a 9-2 run to go up 18-13. The two teams then traded points to make the score 23-19 before a Sarah Elliott (Fy., Lombard, Ill.) kill and a Kate Holtan (Jr., Rochester, Minn.) ace ended the match.

In total in the match, the Gusties notched 13 service aces. Kate Holtan and Sarah Elliott each totaled 10 kills in the match with Kaylyn Johnston (Fy., Urbana, Ill.) dishing out 22 assists. Welsh was apart of five blocks on the defense while Embacher had 14 digs.

Gustavus 3 – 1 North Central (Ill.)

The Gusties rode their momentum from match one into match two. After droping the first two points, the Gusties ran off 11 straight points on a long service from Holtan to take control of the match early. North Central fought back with a six point run of their own in the set but Gustavus shut the door on any comeback chance as the Cardinals never cut the lead lower than five and the Gusties took it 25-18.

A slow start in set two saw North Central go up 10-6 early, but the Gusties went on a 17-5 run to go up 23-15. The Cardinals would respond, bring the score as close as 24-21, but a Holtan kill ended the set.

Set three was back and forth with neither team taking more than a four point lead throughout. With the Gusties holding a 22-19 lead, North Central would score six of the next seven points to take the set and bring the match to 2-1.

Set four was another back-and-forth battle with the Gusties closing out the set on an 8-2 run to take the set 25-19 and seal the victory. The Gusties showed their depth in set number four with eight different players recording a kill.

Elliott and Herrmann led the charge with 10 kills apiece with Johnston notching 27 assists. Embacher led the team with 21 digs while Johnston also contributed 12.

The Gusties are back in action next weekend when they head to the Loras Invite in Dubuque, Iowa on Friday for matches at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. and Saturday with matches at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.


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