Queen’s Women’s Hockey blanks York Lions

Special teams and goaltender guide Gaels to 4-0 victory

Image by: Herbert Wang
The Gaels celebrate their win.

The Queen’s Women’s Hockey team defeated the York Lions 4-0 on Saturday at the Memorial Centre.

During the first period, the Gaels strong offensive play put the Lion’s goalie to work right into the first intermission. The Lions came out to a flying start in the second period but couldn’t capitalize on an early power play as Queen’s goalie Vanessa Campeau made some incredible saves.

Alyson Reeves scored the first goal of the game for Queen’s with a quick snapshot from the hashmark. Less than a minute later, Charlotte Melindy scored to give the Gaels a 2-0 lead.

During the third period, Quinn Jonston and Alex Maw scored for Queen’s, securing the Women’s fourth win of the season.

The Gaels scored three of their four goals on the power play, and goaltender Vanessa Campeau made an impressive 40 saves.

Queen’s forward Maw is returning to the team for her fifth season and spoke to loving “the competitiveness” of the game in a recent press release.

It’s been a competitive season for the 4-4 Gaels so far; they responded well after dropping a tough game to the Toronto Varsity Blues the night before.

“We were down four to nothing late in the game, and [we] actually mounted a pretty significant comeback,” Head Coach Matt Holmberg said in an interview with The Journal.

In discussing the comeback that almost was in their 5-4 loss, Holmberg believes this defeat fueled Queen’s hunger for a win against the York Lions.

“Those last five minutes, I think, went a long way to spring boarding our success on Saturday.”

Holmberg has worked with the Queen’s women’s hockey team for 16 seasons—this is his 13th season as the head coach.

Holmberg is known for guiding Queen’s to their best season in team history in 2012-13 when they won the OUA Championship win and finished with an overall record of 26-8.

“I’ve always made it my number one priority to work on and cultivate a championship culture,” Holmberg said. “[I’m] proud of where the culture is presently, but I always feel like there is some room to grow.”

Holmberg said his team has excellent chemistry this year, and it’s clear the players work hard for each other. After coaching for nearly two decades, he understands how a good team atmosphere can foreshadow success.

“When I can look back and think of the best teams that we’ve had on the ice, it’s usually been the ones that have gotten along the best off the ice as well.”

Holmberg explained how the “team around the team” has improved significantly since his first season coaching at the university. Players have a lot more access to support and resources, and the coaching staff has made offensive play a priority this year.

“We decided in the spring to radically change our systems, with an effort to start generating more offense,” Holmberg said.

“This is a pretty significant change, and you can see it in the practices and on the ice as well.”

The Gaels and their high-powered offense will challenge the Ontario Tech Ridgebacks on Friday Nov. 18 in Oshawa.

Tags

home, Vanessa Campeau, win, women's hockey

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