Volleyball Sweeps Bethany in Home Opener

Posted on September 1st, 2021 by

Sydney Olson keeps a volley alive against Bethany Lutheran. (photo courtesy of David Faulkner, SPX Sports)


SAINT PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus volleyball used a strong attack Wednesday night to shut out Bethany in a 3-0 sweep. With the win, the Gusties improve to 1-0 overall while the Vikings fall to 0-1.

“I thought we did a really nice job of coming in with a lot of intention, focus and discipline,” said Head Coach Rachelle Sherden. “Our out of system was strong, we stayed calm, and our attackers played smart as we mixed up the offense. This gave our attackers a lot of options, especially with one on one blocks. Our serve did a great job of getting them out of the system and leveraging our defense to set up.”

The Gusties came out prepared in the first set jumping out early to take a 11-5 lead and going on a seven point run. Bethany tacked on three more points, but Gustavus would win convincingly 25-8 in the first set with a notable 1.00 side out percentage.

Looking to keep the momentum going, the Gusties put up a 10 point run immediately into the second set and continued to take over. The Vikings responded with four points until Gustavus went up 15-5. Bethany rallied to another four point run before being halted with a trio of kills from Kate Holtan (Sr., Rochester), Sarah Elliott ( Jr., Lombard, Ill.), and Sydney Olson (Jr., Willmar) making the final kill in the 25-11 finish.

Set three proved to be the most challenging for Gustavus with Bethany being on top of a 6-2 lead until Hailey Embacher (Sr., Mankato) took over with serving advantages to bring the game to a 7-7 tie. The set remained tied until two game changing kills from Holtan for the Gusties to bring the score in their favor with a 15-12 lead. The Vikings put up a strong defense until the Gold and Black locked up a final six point run in the 25-14 final set.

Marlee Turn (So., Kennedy) led the team with 12 kills, hitting .571 in the process, while Holtan added 10. Kasie Tweet (So., Adrian) quarterbacked the offense with 27 assists. Embacher was the only member of the Black and Gold with double-digit digs as she had 14, while eight other Gusties recorded at least one.

“We’re going to get back into the gym tomorrow to continue what we’ve been doing in preseason,” said Sherden. “We’re preparing on more of the things that we can control, because we don’t have a lot of film on the teams that we face next. Once we get back in and grinding tomorrow and Friday, we’ll leave ready to go. “

The Gusties will be back in action on Friday when they travel to Waverly for a 5 p.m. opening contest against Wartburg in the Sugar Loaf tournament.


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