Warriors rally against royalty, win streak hits seven

Playing their second game on a back-to-back Feb. 6, the men&rsquo;s volleyball team secured their seventh consecutive win after a strong outing against the third-ranked team in the province, Queen&rsquo;s Gaels. Since the Warriors were playing their final home game of the season, the team was treated to packed bleachers.</p>

The first set saw an endless exchange of points from the two teams. There were a few kills coming from Waterloo’s Braden Cok and Aidan Simone, as well as Queen’s Scott Brunet, Chris Brunet, and Mike Tomlinson. The Gaels played well near the end of the set and got the close 25-23 first set win.

The following set saw similar action from both teams with the highlight being a four-point run near the closing moments of the second set. Waterloo’s Gibson Graham made some big plays during their longest scoring spell, including the end of the set where he made a couple of tips that got them the 28-26 second set victory.

With momentum on their side, the Warriors were uplifted by the roar of the crowd and played another strong set. Although it was tightly contested for most of the set, Graham kept putting up perfect assists for both Cok and Simone. In the set alone, Cok and Simone recorded 15 kills. The Gaels had no response to their opposition’s brilliant attack, thus Waterloo went up 2-1 after a 25-21 third set win.

With the energy they had from closing the third set, the Warriors continued to play amazing offence. The flurry of kills coming from Cok and Simone did not die down, which at one point gave them their biggest lead of the game, 21-13. Under the pressure the Gaels faced from the Warriors’ stellar performance in the set, and the slur of miscues their players had, setter Ivo Dramov’s frustration boiled over and he was issued a yellow card by the referee. The Warriors held control of the lead with their big crowd behind them, and they closed out the game with an impressive 25-17 fourth set win.

The 3-1 win over the Queen’s Gaels came only one day after the Warriors defeated the RMC Paladins in PAC. It was a weekend sweep of the visiting teams from Kingston.

The Warriors’ top players came up big for them on both occasions. Cok recorded 42 kills over the weekend, while his teammate Simone recorded 39.

With their last two wins, the Warriors now sit at sixth place in the OUA standings with a 9-7 record.

Simone, displaying his superior all-around skillset over the weekend, was not only named the Warriors Male Athlete of the Week, but was also named the OUA Male Athlete of the Week.

Riding this seven-game winning streak, the Warriors will look to continue their success as they head out to play Nipissing and York next weekend.