The Concordia Stingers women’s hockey team went into their game against Ottawa last Saturday looking for their first win in 2010, but they ultimately left Ed Meagher Arena disappointed, losing a heartbreaker 5-3.Both teams had strong offensive efforts, but Ottawa’s ability to capitalize on Concordia’s mistakes gave them the edge.
The first period looked to be relatively calm on the scoreboard, but it was a different story on the ice. Both teams had excellent opportunities to score but the strong play of both goalies prevented either team from gaining an early advantage.
Early in the game both teams had trouble clearing the puck, and Concordia centre Mary Jane O’Shea repeatedly took advantage of that, nearly scoring three times after failed Ottawa clearing attempts.
Ottawa forward Erika Pouliot looked to have the first goal of the game when she took a pass from Fannie Desforges and used her stick to deflect it in. The visiting crowd roared when the red light ignited but the goal was immediately disallowed due to high sticking.
Pouliot got another chance just minutes later when, on a two on one, she took a beautiful pass from Alicia Bromberg and immediately ripped it pass the goalie to put the Gee-Gees up by one.
After the ensuing faceoff, the Stingers caught the Gee-Gees sleeping and Natalie May evened the score.
Both teams came out for the second period playing a lot more aggressively, and the Gee-Gees got a lead when a scrum formed in front of the Concordia net and Ashley Burril managed to slip it in.
The Stingers were quick to respond, when a wraparound by forward Emilie Bocchia left a huge rebound for Catherine Rancourt, who promptly lifted it high over the Gee-Gees goalie’s outstretched glove.
The GeeGees answered back just three minutes later when Kayla Hottot took advantage of a poor clearing attempt by a Stinger defenseman and made an outstanding move before sliding the puck through the goalie’s five hole.
Seconds later Gee-Gees defense Carly Porcellato got sent to the box for four minutes for going after a Concordia forward and slashing her.
On the ensuing penalty kill, Gee-Gees forward Taryn Browl tried to waste time by icing the puck. Instead of just staying in the defensive zone, she then hustled down the ice and after a bad clearing attempt by Stingers goalie Doyon-Lessard, she was able to come up with the puck and easily score in the wide open net.
“We’ve got to work on our puck movement on our end of the ice… we just turned the puck over a little bit too much in our end of the ice today and it came back to haunt us” admitted Concordia head coach Les Lawton after the game.
The Stingers pulled a bit closer early in the third when Emilie Bocchia skated behind the opposing net and found Rancourt open in front for her second goal of the day.
While the Stingers’ aggressive play on offense did lead to their three goals as well as a number of excellent scoring chances, the passiveness on defense led to yet another goal in the third period when Gee-Gees forward Cassanda Sparks pounced on a loose puck in the Concordia zone and scored the game’s final goal.
After the game, Coach Lawton mentioned that it’s tough to have to keep coming back, especially after some heartbreaking goals. “We’re a very delicate team in the sense that when things don’t go our way we have a tendency to really drop our heads.”
Still, he thought his team showed heart in refusing to give up, noting that they worked hard to come back from their deficits. “We did a better job in coming back today…we played hard for sixty minutes. We worked at it, worked at it, worked at it.”
Ottawa coach Miguel Filiatrault wasn’t completely happy with the way his team played, specifically in the first period, but admitted that a win is a win, noting that “All in all we’ll take the two points, we’ll run back home, and we’ll get ready for tomorrow.”
Coach Lawton also stressed that despite the loss, it was important to remain focused on prepared for their matchup the next day against UniversitÃ© de MontrÃ©al. “We’re a little disappointed but we’ll see if we can rebound tomorrow and come up with two big points.”
The Stingers ended up losing to UniversitÃ© de MontrÃ©al the next day by a score of 5-3. They travel to Ottawa next week to face Carleton and get another crack at Ottawa in their next home game at 5:30 on February 6th.