ST. PETER, Minn. – Seniors Jessa Youso (Virginia, Minn./Virginia) and Sarah Nielsen (Altoona, Wis./Altoona) paced the Knights with 13 kills each as the Carleton College volleyball team prevailed in a five-set match played at Gustavus Adolphus College. The Knights (12-4, 2-2 MIAC) have now won six of their last seven matches.
"What a great win for us tonight!” commented head coach Heidi Jaynes. “We served tough and out-dug them tonight which really picked us up when other parts of our game were struggling. I loved the team's positive and determined attitude tonight. They had confidence in each other and really worked together."
Carleton led much of the opening set, but the Gusties (7-9, 1-3 MIAC) used a four-point burst to knot the game at 19-19. Nielsen stopped the bleeding with a kill, and the Knights went on to win the, 25-23, on a Youso kill.
The second set began more evenly, the two teams basically trading points up until 11-11. The Gusties took control of the game at this point, knocking out a 9-3 run, which featured three aces. Gustavus went on to win the set and even the match by a 25-18 score.
After dropping the first point of the third set, the Knights took over by winning eight consecutive points, four of them by Nielsen. Carleton never looked back, hitting .545 as the Knights won the game by a whopping 25-9 margin.
Momentum shifted back to the hosts in the fourth set as the Gusties used a 12-4 run to erase an early deficit and exert control. Gustavus forced the match to go the distance with a 25-14 decision.
In the final and deciding set, the Knights jumped out to an early four-point advantage. Both teams played with serious intensity in the coming points, and after Carleton reached match point at 14-9, the Gusties extended the match by scoring the next three points. The Knights eventually closed out the set and the match on a Nielsen kill.
Carleton served up 11 aces on the night and added nine block, including a pair late in the fifth set. Camille Benson (Fy./Savage, Minn./Burnsville) led both teams with 24 digs. Ashley Shin (Fy./Stanford, Calif./Palo Alto) totaled 15 digs and Chloe Nelson (Jr./Madison, Wis./West) also brought up 12 balls, contributing to Carleton’s total of 80. Karen Halls (So./Edina, Minn./Edina) led the Knights in blocks with three. Alicia Flatt (So./Walnut Creek, Calif./Carondelet) filled up the stat sheet with a solid all-around performance that included 40 assists, 14 digs, two aces, and two kills.
Hoping to continue their winning ways, the Knights travel to St. Paul, Minn. to face Hamline University on Friday, Sept. 28.