Queens rustle up Wild Rose gold

The RDC Queens final starting lineup has yet to be set, but it’s getting closer.

RDC Queens Danielle Newton and Jaclyn Neufeld block a shot by a Lakeland Rustler during the gold medal game of the Wild Rose Classic on Sunday. The Queens won the match 2-0.

Queens 2 Rustlers 0

The RDC Queens final starting lineup has yet to be set, but it’s getting closer.

The Queens put together a starting six — seven if you count libero Tarah Truant — that the Lakeland College Rustlers couldn’t handle in the final of the annual Service Plus Inns Wild Rose Classic Sunday afternoon.

The Queens rolled to a 25-16, 25-11 victory.

“We’re not completely there yet in terms of a starting lineup, but today was another step forward from yesterday,” said Queens head coach Talbot Walton, who had a veteran lineup on the floor with only middle blocker Danielle Newton of Lindsay Thurber the only rookie.

“There’s some things we can do better, but it’s coming. I’m happy with our middles and our outside hitters did a good job all weekend.”

Because they have a veteran lineup Walton expects things to come together quicker than normal.

“We have a veteran group who have the ability to adjust quickly and take care of the little things. We shouldn’t be struggling to do those things.”

Earlier the Queens beat the RDC Alumni 25-18, 25-19 in the semifinal while Lakeland downed The King’s University College 18-25, 25-23, 15-13.

The Queens were never really pushed in the final.

“We played intelligent volleyball and served well, which allowed us to defend well.”

Walton especially enjoyed the meeting with the Alumni.

“It was an emotional game. The Alumni always have a bunch of all-stars and it’s always fun meeting them. We have a good tradition here at the college and facing the older players is a big part of that.

“It was also a good measuring stick. We once again served well and were able to keep them off-balance.”

Queens veteran setter Quinn Schulzke was pleased with what she saw so far this season and believes the Queens could be even better than last year when they won the Alberta Colleges Women’s Volleyball League title.

“I believe so,” she said. “We have a veteran team, plus we added some excellent new players, including Danielle (Newton). She’s going to be a big asset for us.”

Schulzke believes the Queens are close to where they want to be at this time of the season.

“The (University of) Regina tournament really helped us,” she said. “It was great competition and we learned a lot. It showed this weekend as we were a step ahead of most of the teams here as they were in their first tournament of the season.”

The fact the Queens have a veteran lineup should give them an edge early in the season.

“The big challenge for us is to make sure we don’t stay at this level. We just can’t, we need to continue to improve,” Schulzke added.

drode@bprda.wpengine.com

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