Blues overshadow blowout

Gaels have much to stew over after Thanksgiving defeat

First-year striker Brittany Almeida netted a hat-trick in Queen’s 9-0 rout of the Ryerson Rams last Sunday.
First-year striker Brittany Almeida netted a hat-trick in Queen’s 9-0 rout of the Ryerson Rams last Sunday.
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The Gaels are searching for a firmer grip on tight games.

Prior to a 9-0 win over the Ryerson Rams, Queen’s dropped a 3-1 decision to the Toronto Varsity Blues at West Campus on Saturday. The Gaels managed only three shots and scored their only goal off the boot of a Toronto defender.

Head coach Dave McDowell believes his squad was unprepared for the match.

“I thought Toronto came out and played very well. They had some disappointing results last weekend and came out physically and mentally prepared,” McDowell said. “I don’t think our team was completely prepared in the same manner and it showed.”

“We need to be better in many aspects of the game if we’re going to be successful.”

The Gaels’ offense struggled to create any sustained pressure, losing possession to the opposition before plays could develop.

McDowell stressed ball control as a facet of the game his team needs to improve.

“I would say we really struggled through our front-runners to keep the ball,” he said. “It’s something we’ve been working with, but it’s very difficult when you constantly lose the ball in the midfield third every time we play forward.”

Queen’s was unable to match Toronto’s physicality and suffered because of it. McDowell made notice of a mismatch on the Queen’s back end.

“Their three front runners were a bit of a matchup problem — [they] just knocked it forward and then did a good job of being more physical and making some better decisions than us,” McDowell said. “I thought they pushed us around a little bit.”

Striker Breanna Burton scored the Gaels’ lone goal in the 73rd minute to make it 2-1. The Blues responded quickly to seal the game 10 minutes later.

Burton echoed her coach’s sentiments about showing up ready to play.

“I don’t think we came out as prepared as we should have,” Burton said. “It was frustrating, but I don’t think we worked hard enough today.”

The Gaels are now 1-1-2 in games decided by two goals or less.

Sunday’s 9-0 result over Ryerson was an abrupt turnaround — a textbook display of Queen’s ability to play for 90 minutes.

Strikers Jackie Tessier and Brittany Almeida both scored hat-tricks. Burton notched a pair and first-year Monique Czaczkowski earned a goal.

The Gaels travel north to face the Nipissing Lakers on Saturday and the Laurentian Voyageurs on Sunday.

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