Queen's Sports Mailbag

Journal Sports answers your questions

Sukhpreet Singh is second in the OUA with 22.6 points per game.
Sukhpreet Singh is second in the OUA with 22.6 points per game.
Credit: 
Journal File Photo

With a second-place finish in the OUA this year, we believe men’s volleyball is poised to make the deepest run in the post-season.

In their last 10 games, the men’s volleyball team sits at 7-3, winning nine of their last 11 sets. Despite a poor match up against McMaster this year — the second best team in Canada — the Gaels boast one of the most well-rounded squads.

Led offensively by Marko Dakic, who is fifth in the OUA in kills and third in hitting percentage, the Gaels have become one of the most efficient attacking teams. They aren’t too bad at defence either, with Ivo Dramov ranked fifth in the OUA in digs per set, and Scott Brunet leading the front line of defence with over one block per set.

Overall, their deep roster and their all-around play gives the team the best chance of coming out on top.

 

At the beginning of the year, if you were to say men’s basketball would be three games above .500, with only two games left in the season, many would have doubted you. 

After losing their star player from last year, Greg Faulkner — 19.8 points, 6.8 rebounds per game — the team was left with major gaps on offence. Not to mention that the team was in the bottom half in most defensive categories, leaving observers to wonder what would be done with the Gaels basketball program. 

But in his fifth year at the helm, Coach Stephan Barrie finally has the team playing his kind of basketball, starting with Sukhpreet Singh.

The fourth-year guard is second in the OUA in points per game (22.6), shooting an efficient 47 per cent from the field. 

Combined with a more complete team effort on the defensive end — the Gaels only allow 74 points per game, six less than last year — Queen’s is poised to survive and advance in the OUA playoffs.

Nick Faris, “Where does “Gaels” rank among OUA team names?”

Gee-Gee’s, Paladins, and Lancers are all silly names. Varsity Blues is lazy, while Lions, Mustangs, Badgers, Golden Hawks, etc., aren’t particularly inspired, as they’re mostly just animals. 

The Voyageurs and Thunderwolves get points for being most creative. Which probably places the Gaels somewhere around third and fifth place, though removing “Golden” from most of the branding knocks Queen’s down a few spots.

Commenter Malcolm Butler-X-Gladwell, “If you theoretically matched up the best Queen’s football team of all time against the worst NFL team of all time, how much would the Lions win by?”

Probably at least 100. The CIS has some quality talent, but at the end of the day, NFL players are professionals for a reason. End of story.

There are many barriers to having stronger interest in hockey at Queen’s, but I’m not sure the Frontenacs are one of them. 

Rink location has always been an issue, with the Memorial Centre a 20-minute walk from campus. From my own experience, Queen’s students aren’t usually the ones filling up the K-Rock Centre. Instead, it’s mostly locals. And many other cities in the OUA  have universities and OHL hockey teams, so it’s not exactly a unique situation.

Starting in 22 of the Gaels 24 games this year, Caitlyn Lahonen of women’s hockey has been a constant thorn in the sides of teams across the OUA — boasting the most saves in the league (601), as well as the second best save percentage and wins. 

Whether it was her 32 saves in the 2-1 win against Toronto on the road or 36-save shutout win against Laurentian, Lahonen has been pivotal to the women’s hockey team finishing third in the OUA. 

For their team to continue their hot play into the post season — with four wins in their last five games — Lahonen will have to be at her best. 

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