There was a time when Miranda Dawe wasn’t sure how long she’d be at RDC.
When she joined the Queens volleyball team prior to the 2013-14 season her plan was to work on a diploma and leave after two years.
But two national championships later all that changed.
“I fell in love with the girls … with the team, and the whole atmosphere here,” she said.
“As I went along, I knew I was valued here, and I have a few things physically that I’m dealing with that may not have been handled as good somewhere else.
“Besides this is like my family. I’m so close to the team and the fans. It’s comfortable here, and I’m glad I stayed.”
So are the Queens, the coaches, and fans.
Miranda turned into one of the premier outside hitters, and defenders, in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference, putting her name in the record book both at the team and ACAC levels.
Dawe heads into her final two regular season matches of her illustrious career this weekend at home against the Medicine Hat Rattlers, needing 12 kills to move into a third place tie all-time.
She’s also tied for second in team history in digs with Maddi Quinn with 860, 30 behind Krista Lougheed.
While she takes pride in her individual accomplishments, that’s not what’s front and centre.
“Sometimes I think of them, but I really don’t compare myself to anyone else. I set a standard for myself, and if I reach that I’m satisfied.”
Miranda would like nothing more than to move past former Kings University star Keri Alcorn into third place in the ACAC in kills, but she’ll have a couple other things on her mind this weekend.
While she has the ACAC, and hopefully the national, playoffs ahead, this will be her final two matches of her five-year career at RDC.
“I think of that in practice sometimes,” she said. “I’ll be doing a simple drill and I realize every contact matters. You don’t appreciate that until you get to this point in your career.”
When it’s all over Dawe will be able to look back with pride on what she accomplished individually and as a team. Two of the proudest moments came in her first two years when the Queens became the first team outside of Quebec to win back-to-back national titles on the women’s side.
“That’s something I’ll always remember. It really hit me the first year when we were celebrating and Talbot (head coach Talbot Walton) mentioned how special that year was and I realized how exciting it really was.”
Dawe played a major role in the Queens second national title as she made the stuff block that accounted for the gold medal winning point.
“I was in the right spot at the right time … it’s a big moment I’ll never forget.”
Dawe believes this year’s edition of the Queens has a legitimate shot at making the nationals.
“I do … we have the talent. We need to play as well as we know we can.”
Dawe isn’t the only one to be playing her final matches this weekend with middle Megan Schmidt and setter Chanelle Kayser finishing their careers. As well middle Hanna Delemont may also be moving on.
Kayser will leave RDC sitting second all-time in ACAC assists with over 2,000 while Schmidt has an outside chance of catching her assistant coach Mandy Carroll in blocks. Schmidt has 124 blocks, 10 behind Carroll.
Danny Rode is a retired Advocate reporter who can be recahed at firstname.lastname@example.org