Spartans Fall To Gusties In NCAA First Round

Aurora University competed in the program's first NCAA Women's Volleyball Tournament.
Aurora University competed in the program's first NCAA Women's Volleyball Tournament.

Courtesy of Aurora University

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- For the time ever the Aurora University women's volleyball team played in the NCAA Division III Women's Volleyball Championship Tournament when it took on Gustavus Adolphus College on Thursday afternoon at the University of Northwestern-St. Paul.

THE BASICS
FINAL SCORE: #2 Gustavus Adolphus College 3, #7 Aurora University 1 (23-25, 25-15, 27-25, 25-15)
LOCATION: St. Paul, Minnesota - University of Northwestern
RECORDS: Aurora University 26-8; Gustavus Adolphus College 24-6

FOR THE SPARTANS
- Katie Vondra had a double-double with 21 kills and 13 digs. The 21 kills was a game-high.
- Emily Lines had 32 assists and eight digs.
- Ava Pauly had nine kills.
- Julia Wood had 20 digs and five assists.

HOW IT HAPPENED
- AU went back and forth with Gustavus in the opening set and built a late 23-17 lead with freshman Lindsey Simpson at the service line.
- The Spartans had to withstand a furious rally attempt from Gustavus but held on to win 25-23.
- The 1-0 set lead gave AU the first NCAA set win in program history and also marked the second time in the 12-year history of the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference that a NACC women's volleyball program won an NCAA set.
- The second set opened up just like the opening set played out, with AU and Gustavus battling point for point. With the set tied 8-8, AU had six hitting errors and one blocking error down the stretch in aiding Gustavus to a 25-15 set win.
- In the third set, AU found themselves trailing 11-7 before Head Coach James Seitelman called a timeout. The Spartans battled and eventually took a lead at 20-18.
- AU led 24-21 but Gustavus had their NCAA experience show as they scored six of the final seven points in the set and won 27-25.
- With the shock of the third set defeat carrying over, AU fell behind 12-4 in the fourth set. AU got the score to 17-11 but went on to fall 25-15.

UP NEXT
The 2017 Aurora University Spartan women's volleyball team set program history in becoming the first Spartan women's program to reach the NCAA Division III Tournament and then won the opening set of the match to win their first set ever in NCAA play.