Bronze no cake walk for Gaels

The Gaels’ playoff season has been called ‘miraculous’. A winning streak that ended yesterday after beginning in January, a record of 5-1 after being scored on first and an improbable (and well publicized) six overtime marathon game that contributed to their first OUA title. The Gaels (and those who have watched them) know that they deserve to be here; they earned their berth and they’ve battled against the best for it.

The Gaels have faced tough competition on their run; defeating the Guelph Gryphons and the Laurier Golden Hawks, both nationally-ranked teams. The Alberta Pandas were defending CIS champions and the Gaels took them out in a shootout.

Intimidation and pressure won’t faze these Gaels. They believe in the power of their team.

Goaltender Mel Dodd-Moher has stood tall time and time again in net for the Gaels. Her play against the McGill Martlets proved that there was no luck in her success against OUA competition. Skill and confidence have proven her to be one of the best goaltenders of the tournament.
The strong presence of veteran line Liz Kench, Becky Conroy and Kelsey Thomson create an impact every time they’re on the ice. Whether it be with their talented stick-handling or their physical presence, this line asserts itself against any competition.

The McHaffie twins have been the most visible presence in the playoffs especially coming off the OUA postseason where they scored winning goals in the Laurier and Guelph series.

Although Queen’s defeated Laurier to advance to the OUA finals, the Gaels will not overlook the consistently powerful Golden Hawks team. Laurier swept the Gaels in their regular season series including a particularly painful 8-1 loss in January.

To put the Laurier team into perspective Justin Fauteux, Sports Editor at the Cord (Laurier’s student newspaper) wrote, “This season was a bit of a strange one for the Laurier Golden Hawks. For starters, they lost three games, which is more than they lost in the previous two seasons combined.” Adding to the strangeness, he said, was that Queen’s was able to sweep them in the postseason.

Laurier boasts one of the most impressive goaltenders in the country in Liz Knox. Reigning CIS player of the year, Knox has a 20-2 record with five shutouts to lead the OUA. The Gaels will have to work to create opportunities against her.

The Gaels will be in a battle for bronze Sunday against a talented Laurier squad. Their run is not miraculous and their underdog status has only acted as encouragement for the team. Queen’s will be on the ice tomorrow looking to prove themselves as they have time and time again this year.

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