Sunday night saw an upset as the 4-14 Laurier Golden Hawks knocked off the 13-4 Gaels in men’s volleyball. The loss dropped Queen’s back into a tie for second place in Ontario with the 13-5 Guelph Gryphons, who beat the Windsor Lancers in straight sets Sunday night.
Sunday’s game was rescheduled from Friday night due to the storms that struck the province that day. Head coach Brenda Willis said the rescheduling made things difficult for the Gaels.
“The weather put a real kink in our plans,” she said. “We had to get Laurier out of our heads and prepare for Waterloo.”
Willis said the Gaels were too confident going into the match against the Golden Hawks.
“There was a little bit of taking Laurier lightly.”
Laurier had no expectations going in, and thus were able to take more risks, Willis said.
“They played with reckless abandon.”
The Gaels started the weekend with a 20-25, 25-22, 25-23, 25-21 win over the 10-7 Waterloo Warriors Saturday night. Rookie outside hitter Joren Zeeman led the Gaels with 16 kills, while setter Devon Miller contributed a team-high 12 digs and 30 assists.
Willis said the Waterloo game wasn’t one of the Gaels’ best performances either.
A flu bug forced her to sit libero Stu Hamilton against Waterloo, Willis said.
“He couldn’t even stay standing up,” she said.
Things turned around Sunday night, however. Queen’s lost the first two sets to Laurier by scores of 25-20 and 27-25. They rebounded to win the third set 25-20, but lost the fourth 25-22.
Willis said Laurier had an exceptionally strong match.
“If they played like that all year, they’d definitely be in the playoffs,” she said, adding that the Gaels need to improve on four key elements of their game.
“We have to serve tougher, pass consistently, run the middle [attack] and defend their right-side attack,” she said.
Hamilton’s play was impressive considering he was still suffering from the flu, she said.
Zeeman led the team again with 14 kills, while outside hitter Jeff DeMeza chipped in 13. Hamilton played three sets and recorded eight digs.
DeMeza said he was disappointed with his play.
“It was probably my worst game of the season so far,” he said.
The team hosts 13-5 Guelph and the 18-0 McMaster Marauders in their final regular-season matches this coming weekend, a pair of games that will likely determine playoff seeding. Both out-of-town teams will also play the winless Royal Military College Paladins, so Queen’s would need to win both matches to secure the second spot and a corresponding first-round bye.
Willis said the game against Guelph is more important, because a win there would assure them of at least third place.
“Our focus will be solely on Guelph, because staying on the two-three side of the draw is important to avoid [McMaster] in the semis.” De Meza said it will be even more important for the team to improve their own play, though, regardless of the results.
“We’ve strung together two or three pretty shitty games here.”
All final editorial decisions are made by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and/or the Managing Editor. Authors should not be contacted, targeted, or harassed under any circumstances. If you have any grievances with this article, please direct your comments to email@example.com.