Queen’s Women’s Volleyball upsets Mustangs in OUA quarterfinals

Gaels advance to OUA semifinals after 3-0 sweep

Image supplied by: Supplied by A&R
The Gaels are one step closer to the Quigley Cup.

This weekend, Western learned they can’t count Queen’s out.

Heading into this weekend’s OUA quarterfinal Women’s Volleyball game, the teams were separated by a large gap in the OUA rankings, with the Gaels in the ninth seed and the Mustangs in the second. Despite this gap, the Gaels pulled out an incredible win and crushed the Mustangs in straight sets.

Middle Amanda Siksna spoke with The Journal about the preparation this upset required.

“All season we’ve been working on a bunch of little technical things,” she said.

“Leading up to [the game] we really focused on game planning and watching videos, so kudos to the coaches because that really worked out.”

The Gaels took the first point of the first set with a big block from Siksna and Hannah Duchesneau, starting a pattern of a strong defensive presence at the net. The team—who normally averages two blocks per set—achieved an impressive 13 in three sets, nine of which were credited to Siksna.

Queen’s pulled ahead by four early in the set, leading the Mustangs coach to call a timeout. Unfortunately for Queen’s, the timeout was effective and the Mustangs pulled ahead 18-14.

However, the Mustangs advantage didn’t last long as the Gaels rallied together, set up some amazing plays, and took the set 25-23.

“I think our team chemistry just really shone through on that and it was something special,” Siksna said of the first set.

“I think we really stuck together which is a good thing. We were a solid unit on and off the court.”

The Gael’s continued their drive into the second set, demonstrating amazing hustle on defense as they made the Mustangs work hard for every point.

The set proved to be a marathon in which both teams went point for point until Western pulled ahead by five points. Queen’s fought back with big kills—many credited to outside Mary Stewart—and ultimately prevailed 25-22.

After the second set, the Gaels had established a pattern of not giving up.

Stewart played an integral role throughout the game, accruing an impressive 11 kills, 10 digs, and five blocks to give the Gaels 14 points.

Western seemed frazzled as they started the third set, and Queen’s capitalized. They continued their dominant presence at the net with effective blocks and strong kills just as they had all game as their travelling fans propelled them to victory.

“The energy was felt through everybody, even the fans that came out to support us,” Siksna.

“We didn’t have home court advantage, but it still felt amazing to play. It wasn’t an everyone was against us kind of thing. It was a really good atmosphere and it definitely felt good to beat them.”

Queen’s lead the in points entire third set and clinched the win 25-21.

Siksna—who leads the OUA in blocks per set—was named Queen’s Athlete of the Week in recognition of the role she played in Saturdays win.

“It’s definitely a big honor,” she said.

“There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with that and I’m definitely grateful for that opportunity. I have been working pretty hard this past year so it’s a good recognition, but there’s still work to be done so I got to keep that in mind. The seasons not over yet—playoffs are just the start.”

According to Siksna, the Gaels still “have work do to” as they prepare for their semifinal game against Waterloo this weekend.

“It’s another away game, but we just got to bring the same amount of passion, intensity, and resiliency that we did this past weekend and really implement what we’ve been working on all season. [We] just [need] stick to Queen’s Women’s Volleyball.”

The Gaels continue their journey to the Quigley Cup this Saturday at 4 p.m. in their semifinal game against Waterloo. The match is available to stream on OUA.tv.


Mustangs, playoffs, sweep, upset, Volleyball

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