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ISSUE 117 VOL 6 PUBLISHED 10/31/2003

Volleyball’s season ends in loss to Knights

By Julie Gunderson
Sports Editor

Friday, October 31, 2003

The St. Olaf volleyball team riding a three-game winning streak into Wednesday night’s matchup against Carleton feel short to the Knights losing 0-3. The Oles’ defeat to their cross-town rivals was even more bitter for the team, as the loss puts an end to their postseason hopes.

The Oles end their season with a 5-6 record in the MIAC and a 14-17 mark overall. The team’s sub-500 record came as somewhat of a disappointment after the Oles 2002 campaign which saw them finish 9-2 and second in the MIAC.

The Oles had to battle back from its rocky start this season when it opened up MIAC play with three consecutive losse. Just a couple of weeks ago the team found themselves with a 2-5 conference record.

The girls’ enthusiasm for the game, however, contributed to their ability to bounce back.

“We’re a very young team and we’re still learning more about ourselves,” Danica Finseth ’06 said. “Our team has seen many lineup changes as we’ve tried to figure out the best ways to motivate ourselves and make things click.”

The team’s turnaround began on Oct. 17 when the Oles upset St. Thomas 3-1. This performace was followed by another 3-2 victory against Hamline. The team capped off the stretch by sweeping St. Kate’s 3-0.

“We were really focusing on aggressive serving, service receiving, and communication,” Audrey Volstad ’07 said. “Everyone was playing for each other and having fun. This team just loves to compete and go for everything.”

A competitive and fun-loving attitude is what sparked the team’s chemistry.

“There is nothing better than being surrounded by a dozen other people who love the game just as much as you do every day, whether at practice or at a game,” Finseth said.

Although there won’t be any more practices or games this season for the Oles and the team will be forced to say goodbye to senior co-captains Andrea Cuff and Andrea Drapcho, all may not be lost. The teams strong finish bodes well for next season.

“We’ve made big steps to where we want to be come next season,” Finseth said.

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