The Waterville-Elysian-Morristown Buccaneers made history tonight by snapping what has to be one of the most dominant performances in Minnesota high school sports history.  The Faribault Bethlehem Academy volleyball team had a 137 Gopher Conference match winning streak going into the contest in Waterville.  That's about 18 years worth of dominance.  The last Gopher Conference team to defeat Bethlehem Academy was New RIchland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva in October of 2000 and that was the only conference loss that season for the Cardinals.

You know the saying, "All good things must come to an end." The Cardinals were not going to give up their streak without a fight.  BA won the first set 25-22 before the Buccaneers reeled off 25-20, 25-14, 25-21 wins in the Gopher Conference opener for both teams.  Class A #1 ranked Waterville-Elysian-Morristown didn't do themselves any favors with 11 service errors on the night.  They did have 10 aces led by MaeLea Harmon with 5 ace serves.  The Bucs had a team hitting percentage of .150.   Three players had double digit kills for them.  Alexis Morsching with 12, MaeLea Harmon 12 and Toryn Richards tallied 11.

Morgan Nusbaum and Harmon were perfect in set assists with 38 of the 41.  Nusbaum had 22 and Harmon 16.

It was defense, the phase of the game the Cardinals have excelled in for so many years that was the difference for WEM.  In the 4 set match they had 110 digs with 3 players over 20 each.  Libero Shelby Hermel had 25, Toryn Richards 22, Alexis Morsching 21.  Morgan Nusbaum and MaeLea Harmon had 19 and 15 respectively.

The Bucs are now 3-0 and Cardinals 0-4 on the season.

Waterville-Elysian-Morristown hosts their 40th annual Tournament this weekend.  There are 7 teams competing.  The Buccaneers open at 8:15 a.m. with Tri-City United, then play Nova Academy, St. Clair, Grand Meadow, Cleveland and Norwood-Young America.

Bethlehem Academy participates in the Shakopee Tournament beginning 9:00 a.m. with Eagan, Rochester Mayo, Willmar, East Ridge, Forest Lake and Shakopee participating.

The Cardinals enter this season with 18 straight Gopher Conference titles and 20 in the past 22 seasons.

Van Orsow Gym at Faribault Bethlehem Academy. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld
Van Orsow Gym at Faribault Bethlehem Academy. Photo by Gordy Kosfeld

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