The Queens College women’s volleyball team’s 3-9 conference record ensures another losing season. Starting Tuesday at NYIT, the team needs to win their final five games to even have a shot at the East Coast Conference playoffs this year.
But don’t tell team captain and senior Suzanne Byrne they can’t make it, even despite the recent challenges raised by Hurricane Sandy.
“I absolutely hate losing, which is what our season has mainly been comprised of,” Byrne said. “But the girls are all really great and have been working really hard so hopefully we will get results in the last part of the season.”
Byrne leads the team in numerous categories season: 596 total attacks, 28 service aces and 274 digs (averaging 3.35 digs per set).
These impressive numbers, however, are just a glimpse of Byrne’s leadership role within the team and athletics department. Byrne also holds the secretarial position in the Student Athletic Advisory Committee and is also a member of the Student Athlete Mentors.
Because of Hurricane Sandy, the team now faces disrupting changes in their game schedule. Their games against LIU Post and Dowling, two important conference games, have been postponed with an unknown makeup date.
The volleyball squad struggled for practice time and space due to the recent storm and the college’s role as an evacuation center for those affected by Hurricane Sandy. Byrne expressed concerns about the effects of this change in routine for the team.
“We had practice at 5:30 a.m. this morning in Brooklyn and have a practice tomorrow and Sunday and are not sure when we are going to practice again after that,” said Byrne on Friday.
These alterations have an especial affect on Byrne and fellow senior, Erin Eckes. Now, the girls are forced to celebrate their “Senior Game,” a match that traditionally celebrates seniors on their home court, at NYIT.
“It is great that we are still having one, but it is not as special as we both had hoped it would be with a home crowd present,” Byrne explained.
The effects of Hurricane Sandy also forced Byrne to play her last game of competitive volleyball without the presence of her family.
“My whole family had flights to come out this week but my parents’ flight was cancelled because of the storm, and my sister is here now, but our games were postponed so it’s a bit upsetting because I was really looking forward to having them all see me play again,” said the 21-year-old from Richmond, British Columbia.
Byrne describes her experience as a Lady Knight as memorable and as a positive learning experience. She is hopeful the team can achieve their goal of overcoming their losing record and making the conference playoffs.