It has been an emotional rollercoaster for the RDC Queens at the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association Women’s Volleyball Championships.
The Queens lost a heartbreaking five-set match to open the tournament Thursday in Quebec and had to dig deep on Day 2 to move on.
In Friday’s bronze quarter-final match, the Queens were pushed to the brink by Lynx d’Edouard-Montpetit and needed some late heroics to find a five-set victory (24-26, 25-22, 21-25, 25-18, 15-9).
Head coach Talbot Walton said his group once again may not have had their best, but showed the necessary resiliency needed to close the match out.
The Queens were down two sets to one and it was the fourth where they in a way, refused to lose.
“That was an important game with our backs against the wall, being down two sets to one and not really having played a set that we really played well– consistent Queens volleyball style. It was good to see us respond in that fourth set and find that energy level and level of play and compete we’re familiar with,” Walton said.
“Obviously winning the game is important, but from a developmental piece and the weekend, trying to get better every day, it was a big factor for us to get that win.”
Trailing 8-7 in the final set, the Queens rallied behind some strong serving from Edyn Aasman and pulled away with a 15-9 win to close out the win.
“She came in and did a really good job of serving and passing the ball for us. Really opened up the big gap. We’d get a couple point lead and then we’d give it back. Never thought we were in a consistent state, but in that fourth and fifth set, it felt a little bit closer to that level we’re looking for,” Walton said.
Emma Holmes was player of match for the Queens, she finished with a match-high 14 kills, nine digs and two aces. Tess Pearman chipped in 10 kills, middle Ali Greenshields had seven and Erin Nuefeldt added five.
“Once we got going in the fourth set when Erin came back in, I thought she hit some big-time balls and that gave us some juice again. We were just lacking on that left side of the court and she provided enough of a spark. Then holmes got on a run and scored a bunch of points,” Walton said.
The Queens will play in bronze semi-final Friday morning and with a win, they’ll have a chance to play for bronze. Although that’s not the ultimate reason they traveled to Quebec, it would be a well-earned bronze if they were to make it that far.
“Definitely, that is in our minds for sure. We haven’t been the best on day 1 or day 2, but in reality, we’ve put ourselves in a spot on day 3, if we play our level of volleyball, we’ve got a really good chance to be a medalist for sure. As long as we’re good on day 3, we’ll be a happy team for sure,” Walton said.