The Concordia Stingers men’s basketball team won their seventh straight victory Friday night with a 64-57 win over the Laval Rouge et Or.
Down by three at halftime, Laval pulled even with 15 minutes left in the second half. Their comeback fell short though as the Stingers went on a 17-6 run to open up a 60-49 lead late in the game. Instrumental in the run was Dwayne Buckley, who scored 10 consecutive points and had two of his three steals in that span. He ended the game leading all Stingers with 19 points.
“It was a rough game, a tough game. We had to play hard defensively and we created easy baskets,” Buckley said. “That’s the kind of team we are. We’re a team that goes up and down the court.”
The Stingers Ben McCarthy added 11 points and 16 rebounds. It was a the six-foot-ten centre’s three-point play that started the Stingers run in the second half. McCarthy is in his first year with the Stingers but in his final year of CIS eligibility. He spent four years with the St. Mary’s Huskies.
Concordia trailed early in the first half but kept the Rouge et Or in check for the rest of the game, forcing Laval to play Stingers basketball. Jean-Phillipe Morin led the Rouge et Or with 21 points and nine rebounds in a losing cause.
The big win comes a week after a surprisingly tough game against the UQAM Citadins that came down to the final possession.
“Last week was a wakeup call,” Buckley said. “Every team needs one and I think it was good for us and hopefully we’ll keep on rolling.”
The Stingers have a four-point lead over the Laval Rouge et Or, who moved into second place after beating Bishop’s on Saturday. The McGill Redmen upset the Gaiters on Friday. Laval has played 13 games, one more than the Stingers and Gaiters.
Concordia has four games remaining in the regular season, each against one of their conference rivals. The Stingers have to win just two of those games to guarantee themselves top spot in the QUBL. A loss by Bishop’s and Laval coupled with one Stingers win will give Concordia top spot for the second consecutive season.
The Stingers have a two-game weekend next week as they take on Bishop’s in Lennoxville on Friday and then face McGill at home on Saturday. Tip-off is at 4 p.m.