Concordia’s men’s basketball team took on cross-town rivals the McGill Redmen on Saturday, taking a close last minute win with a score of 69-64.
The Stingers took an early lead with three quick points from Evens Laroche and a free throw by Vali Lazarescu. Five minutes in to the game Decee Krah nailed a three-pointer, speeding the game up. McGill fought back with two three-pointers in a row, giving them a lead of 9-7. Lazarescu hit a jumper, tying the game at 9-9. The first period ended with a tip off by Laroche and a basket from McGill making it an even 11-11.
The second period started with more points on both sides, including a nice jumper by Laroche, tying the game back up at 13-13. Jean-AndrÃ© Moussignac helped the Stingers grab the lead by sinking another three pointer. Sebastien Martin and Krah worked a great give and go play, allowing Martin to get a lay-up, keeping the lead and bringing the new score to 18-15.
The Stingers lead didn’t last very long, as McGill sank another three pointer to tie the game, and stepped up again to score a beautiful basket that even Stingers fans felt forced to clap. The rest of the period consisted of back and forth baskets and another three pointer by Moussignac, ending the first half in a tie at 26-26.
The second half of the game started with a basket by Stingers forward Kafil Eyitayo and a good rebound by Lazarescu. A foul on Concordia allowed Lazarescu to sink a basket making the score 30-26. McGill rebounded soon after, getting two quick baskets in a row, tying the game again at 30-30.
With only five minutes left in the third period, Laroche gave his team the lead but McGill quickly evened it out. Stingers forward James Clark scored on a beautiful play, and put his team back in the lead.
A foul on Laroche gave him the chance to hold on to the lead with two free throws. He netted one, holding the three-point lead. McGill scored again, but thanks to the free throw, Stingers kept a feeble lead by one point.
Krah advanced the score by swooshing a three pointer, and thanks to two baskets from Clark, a slam dunk by Laroche and Lazarescu’s first three pointer of the game, Concordia sealed the lead.
Of course, this couldn’t have been done without a strong defensive effort by the Stingers throughout the entire game.
McGill started off the final period with a couple of strong entries to the basket. Clark tried to play a hard defence, but it was no match for the Redmen offence, leaving them trailing by only two points. Krah stepped up and sank another three pointer only to have McGill respond with not just another three pointer, but two free throws – tying the game at 50-50 with six minutes left.
Two McGill turnovers allowed forward Laroche to gain possession of the ball, and one more McGill gaffe helped Concordia take a solid six point lead. But ever persistent McGill re-gained possession of the ball and sank two more quick three-pointers tying it at 56-56 with four minutes left in the game.
With the Stingers’ backs against the wall, point guard Hamza Ruhezamihigo nailed a three pointer. With less than two minutes left, Laroche intercepted the ball and it bounced to Krah who sank it without hesitation. Ruhezamihigo then netted a three-pointer and Lazarescu forced a foul and sunk the two free throws making the score 66-58. McGill sank a final three-pointer and Laroche was fouled three time in a row; he made three of the six points giving the Stingers the final five point lead, ending the game in victory at 69-64.