Men’s rugby first in East

Queen’s victory over Brock secures first place in division with one game left

Gaels’ fullback Colin Alexander breaks through the Brock lines for the first try of Friday’s game
Gaels’ fullback Colin Alexander breaks through the Brock lines for the first try of Friday’s game
Supplied Photo by Ethan Pancer

The Gaels hosted the Brock Badgers at Kingston Field on Oct. 10 in a game that would determine who took top spot in the OUA East. Though it was an evenly matched affair, Queen’s managed to get the upper hand on the Badgers to win 34-20, securing them first place in their division and boosting their confidence for the upcoming playoffs.

Queen’s head coach Peter Huigenbos said he was happy with his team’s performance, but it wasn’t as commanding a win as the score might suggest.

“We worked all week at focusing on outworking Brock around the park for 80 minutes. Apart from a few hiccups, our boys feel good about their effort today,” he said. “Though the score was 34-20, it was a close fight to the end.”

Scoring tries for the Gaels were Colin Alexander, Graham Watt, Graeme Dibden, Alistair Clark and Scott Kyle, with Chris Barrett and Zach Pancer converting tries and taking penalties.

In last year’s OUA final, the Badgers beat the Gaels 22-6, which Huigenbos said added to Queen’s drive to win this time around.

“There’s a lot of motivation,” he said. “We didn’t want to lose on our home field. We had a score to settle with Brock.” As for elements to improve on for the last regular season game against the Royal Military College Paladins and the upcoming playoffs, Huigenbos said the team needed to work on holding the ball

in contact.

“The biggest thing that hurt us today was keeping the ball after contact,” he said. “Thankfully our defence was solid today, but we definitely have work to do.”

Fullback Colin Alexander said the Gaels backs stuck with their game plan, but there’s still work to be done before the playoffs.

“We were trying to keep the ball in the middle of the field,” he said. “The back three crashed up the middle well so I think we played well today. Scoring early, it was a dream start. We wanted to get them on the hind foot right away and we did. … We did a lot of things well, but did some poorly, too. We need to keep our heads and make the right decisions.”

Gaels’ captain and flanker Alistair Clark said the Gaels’ intensity was largely a product of their preparation for the game.

“We knew they were going to be a good team. Coming out with the intensity to score first was good. We had mental lapses but we knew the whole time that it was our game to lose, so we stuck to the game plan.”

Clark said he felt the team needs to keep their focus for upcoming games in order to be successful in the playoffs.

“We have RMC then a quarterfinal game,” he said. “We need to keep the same focus that we have against big teams against RMC and into the playoffs, so when we run into another big team we’ll be better than we are now.”

The Gaels kick off against the Paladins tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Kingston Field.

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