For the second time in a row, Caroline Lemay and Sabrina Roy were named to the RSEQ All-Star team. Photo: Courtesy of Caroline Lemay.
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Despite losing season, Gee-Gees players saw personal bests

Last week, Sabrina Roy and Caroline Lemay were named to the All-Star team of the Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ), following their season with the Gee-Gees volleyball team. For both players, it was the second season in a row in which they were named All-Stars, after earning similar honours last season.

The two players were dominant with the University of Ottawa this year. Roy, whose play is focused on the defensive aspect, finished with a total of 369 digs and 4.56 digs per set, leading both the team and the RSEQ, and among the best in the U Sports. Lemay, who mostly plays on the left side of the court, finished second in the total points category with a total of 255, just 13 short of the team lead, held by Kaly Soro.

Overall, however, it was a weak season for the team, as the Gees finished with only four wins in the 20 games they played, good for last out of the six teams in the RSEQ, missing the playoffs for the second straight year.

It was their second season in that division, after previously playing in the Ontario University Athletics league. “The hardest part of the season for us was to be able to compete against outstanding players of the division and teams among the country’s best,” said Lemay.

“I think we had some very bad games, but I think we also had some much better games where we were able to keep the opponents tight, where we gave our team a chance and stayed in the game, notably against the Montreal Carabins, the best team in the RSEQ,” Roy noted.

According to Lemay, “We never really stopped practicing since the end of the season … We are already looking forward for next season. We don’t want to lose our pace, our work ethic. We are looking mostly at the system we will be using for next year, the role of each of us will have, and what we can do specifically to improve.”

The team was able to develop their game together this season, learning their strengths and weaknesses, as Roy points out. “Older players from last year will also be with us this summer to help us coordinate our practices, and that will help us for sure.”.

In the coming year, the Gee-Gees will have to watch out for the Carabins. “Playing against Quebec-based teams gave us a chance to be better and elevate our level of game. Playing against each of them on a regular basis helps us knowing their style of game, and we can work from there,” said Lemay.

Roy believes the Gees played better games against better, high-ranked teams, while their less successful games came against weaker teams. “It will be an interesting fact to keep in mind for next season.”

Roy and Lemay are both in their fourth year and are eligible to come back next season. “I might be back, depending on my application status for next year,” Roy said. Lemay confirmed she will be back next year.

“We didn’t have a big team,” Lemay admitted, looking back at the roster. “Much of the players were quite young; we had four players in fourth or fifth year, and the rest were in second or third year. I hope we can work hard in finding some more experience players to join the team for next year.”

Knowing what they need to work on, every player will have a strong season of training to get ready for the court in September.