Athletes of the Week

Eilish McConville (Women's soccer) and Robert Kitz (Men's cross-country)

Eilish McConville, women's soccer

The women’s soccer team recently returned from the Canadian championships in Victoria, where they fell 3-1 to UBC in the final and brought home the silver medal.

The Gaels had swept through the Ontario playoffs, and earned a place at nationals with a decisive 3-0 win over Western–arguably their best game of the season.

Eilish McConville, the CIS Outstanding Player of the Year, paced the Queen’s attack. She led the nation scoring, finishing with 26 regular season and playoff goals. McConville closed out her illustrious career with 55 goals in 46 matches.

She was quick to brush aside the accolades.

“Everything that you get as an individual is just icing on the cake if the team does well,” she said.

Renée MacLellan, who scored the team’s only goal in the final, and Janine Clark joined McConville as OUA first-team all-stars; Andrea Pigozzo was named to the second team. Jennifer Pentesco said the Gaels’ accomplishments are especially impressive considering the number of injuries the team has had to sustain.

McConville added, “We had a lot of people late in the season replacing people that got injured, and they really stepped up their game.” Returning players are already looking forward to next year.

Pentesco acknowledged that the team is losing several key players, including McConville, but she believes the returning players will be able to fill in the gaps.

MacLellan said winning nationals will still be their focus next season.

“We hope to qualify for nationals next year and try to do even better.”

Robert Kitz, men's cross-country

The Queen’s cross-country team recently wrapped up its season with a tenth-place finish at the Canadian championships at Université Laval last weekend. Leading the way was Robert Kitz, who finished 25th in the 10-kilometre race, finishing with a time of 34:02.

But having won two OUA races earlier in the season, Kitz said he was expecting more from himself.

“I was pretty disappointed with my result,” he said. “I went into it looking for at least a top-10 finish, and obviously that didn’t happen.” Having placed in the top four in four of its five races this year, the men’s team was disappointed with its 10th-place showing at nationals.

“The team as a whole wasn’t too pleased with the way things went,” Kitz said. “It looked like we were going to be one of the top teams going into the competition.” But the underachievement at nationals doesn’t diminish Kitz’s outstanding individual performance throughout the fall, which included a first place finish at the Western Invitational, running ten kilometers in 32:55. He also placed first at the Queen’s Invitational at Fort Henry Hill and seventeenth in a field of more than 300 runners at the Paul Short Invitational in Pennsylvania, competing against several prominent American schools. Kitz highlighted his Western performance as his best run of the season, and said he was also proud of the whole team’s season.

“I think overall we had a really good fall. Although it was disappointing at the end, everyone had come together and was running well.” Despite all of his success throughout the fall, the run at Laval still weighs on Kitz’s mind. He said his goal for next season is simple.

“To come back and settle the score.”

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