Gee-Gees seeded seventh at nationals
Photo credit: Marta Kierkus
The Gee-Gees women’s volleyball team missed out on the gold medal in a heartbreaking final match against the University of Toronto Varsity Blues.The Gees took home the silver medal at the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) championship final on Feb. 21.
They won their opening quarterfinal game against the Ryerson Rams 3-0 and secured their spot in the finals by beating the hosting Guelph Gryphons 3-1 in the semis. Then the squad lost 3-2 to the Varsity Blues to finish in second place The Gee-Gees were the only team who had beaten Toronto in the OUA regular season.
“The regular season destroys their unbeatable image,” said third-year middle Sophie Chenail.
Ottawa led for the beginning of the first set, taking advantage of Toronto’s mistakes at the net. But it was Toronto’s attackers that made the difference in the long run, which the Gee-Gees couldn’t respond to consistently. Ottawa went on to win the next two sets, only to fall to Toronto in the final two.
“The start of the fourth set was crucial for them in response,” said head coach Lionel Woods.
Left side Myriam English led Ottawa with 19.5 points, while Toronto’s Charlotte Sider scored 19. Both players were named OUA East first team all-stars. Gee-Gees setter Kira Tome was also named the player of the match.
“It could have turned out differently,” said Chenail. “We didn’t receive as well as we had in previous games. Another problem was the serving, which was not as aggressive as usual.”
Obviously, it’s never easy to lose, but little mistakes aside, Chenail said she feels the team had a good game and fought well. Toronto is currently ranked third in the nation, while the U of O is seated at seventh.
Both the Gee-Gees and Varsity Blues will continue on to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) championships Feb. 23 to March 1, hosted by the U of T. Woods said he thought both teams played up to their ability during the OUA final, but said he’s excited for a shot at redemption at the CIS tournament.
“I’m thrilled that we both get to go to nationals,” said Woods. “We get to wake up in the morning with a new goal, which is the first round at nationals.” Ottawa will begin by playing the number two University of Alberta Pandas in the quarterfinal game Thursday Feb. 24 at 8 p.m. Catch the action at cis-sic.tv.