New objectives

Rebuilding Gaels team sits third in OUA

Setter Matt Bonshor (3) recorded 29 assists last Friday against RMC, while middle Scott Brunet (11) had six kills.
Setter Matt Bonshor (3) recorded 29 assists last Friday against RMC, while middle Scott Brunet (11) had six kills.

The Gaels have exceeded expectations through the first half of the season. Short-term success has suddenly changed the team’s long-term perspective.

The Gaels swept the RMC Paladins 3-0 last Friday, wrapping up their ninth of 18 season games.

The team has registered a 6-3 record, which puts them in third place going into the holiday break.

“Probably the biggest barrier we’ve had to overcome has been our youth,” said second-year middle Scott Brunet. “We learned a lot from the beginning, so we can improve on just little things.”

The Gaels 17-player roster consists of 12 players in their second year or below, and only five upper-year students.

“It’s a pretty young group in terms of CIS experience and playing together,” said Gaels head coach Brenda Willis.

The team’s initial long-term goals were to develop their youth, their depth and to hopefully make the playoffs.

“Our goals are long term,” said Willis. “Our job is just to get a little better at everything every day.”

The Gaels are now looking ahead to a seven-week break from OUA competition, during which the team is set to attend several training sessions.

“Based on the first half, I would say we have to be a better team out of the middle,” Willis said. “We [also] need to improve on our attack efficiency.”

The team will compete in the York Excalibur tournament from Jan. 2-4.

Willis said she sees the tournament as the launching pad for the second half of the season.

With nine games remaining, the Gaels will resume OUA play on Jan. 12 against the Guelph Gryphons (2-7).

The team’s new objective is to remain in the OUA’s top three, according to Willis.

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