Both basketball teams lose on Shoot for the Cure weekend
On Feb. 13, the Stingers basketball teams played their final home games of the year against their cross-town rivals, the McGill Martlets and the McGill Redmen. The Martlets defeated the women’s team 77-64, while the men’s team had their seven game winning streak snapped and lost to the Redmen 53-44.
The Stingers women’s basketball team had a slow start to their game as they were down 8-0 early after McGill hit two early three-pointers. Stingers forward Richelle Gregoire scored the Stingers first basket of the game with a three-pointer and ended the quarter with five more points. The first quarter ended with the Stingers trailing 22-14.
Once again, the Martlets started the second quarter on a hot streak as they scored six unanswered points to begin the quarter. The Stingers were able to make a comeback late when they went on a 7-2 run. Despite that, the Stingers were down 36-25 at halftime.
The Martlets scored five unanswered points to start the third quarter. The Stingers got their first points of the second half off of a pair of free-throws by shooting guard Marie-Eve Martin. The Stingers brought the Martlets lead down to eight points but that was a close as they would come in the quarter. The third quarter ended with a score of 56-42 in favour of the Martlets.
The Martlets started the fourth quarter with a bang as guard Gladys Hakizimana hit her first of two threes in the quarter. Gregoire of the Stingers hit back-to-back threes early in the quarter to make it a ten point lead in favour of the Martlets. This would be the closest they would come to tying the game.
“We gave away too many points in the first quarter and spotted them 11 points in the first half,“ said Stingers coach Tenicha Gittens. “McGill needed to come here and play like the championship team that they were and they did.”
On the men’s side the Redmen scored the game’s first five points which included a three-pointer by guard Vincent Dufort. The Stingers started the game slow as they only had six points in the quarter which included a three-pointer by forward Jean-Daniel Mathieu. The Redmen led 17-6 after the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Stingers woke up and took advantaged of some Redmen turnovers. The quarter was slow for the first two minutes as neither team was able to hit a shot. After a free-throw by Stingers forward Schneiders Suffrard, the Stingers went on a 5-0 run to cut the Redmen lead to five points. With three minutes left in the quarter, the Stingers cut the lead to just one after a three-pointer by point guard Ricardo Monge. The second quarter ended with the Stingers trailing 24-22.
The Redmen got the first points of the third quarter on a basket by forward Francois Bourque. Stingers forward Michael Fosu scored four straight points to start the quarter, which gave the team their first lead. The Redmen then came back and took a 39-34 lead heading into the final quarter.
The Stingers started the fourth quarter with some clutch three-pointers by forward Ken Beaulieu which would help diminish the Redmen lead to just one point. That was the closest the Stingers came to tying the match.
“Our defense was good as usual, we held McGill to only 53 points. Probably the least amount of points we’ve given up all year,” said Stingers coach Rastko Popovic. “But when you shoot 22 per cent from the field and miss 11 free-throws it’s pretty much impossible to win.”
Saturday’s games took place during the Stingers’ “Shoot for the Cure Weekend.” According to the CIS website, “Shoot for the Cure” is an initiative which began in 2007 that helps to raise money and bring awareness to breast cancer. All 47 CIS schools with a basketball program take part in it. An estimated $886,000 has been raised over the last nine years of the initiative.
“It is a good fundraiser for a good cause, cancer is something that is present all over the world, it hurts a lot of people so we are happy to support it, anyway we can,” said Popovic.
“As the Stingers, we represent the community, we represent people, we are lucky to have the opportunity so it’s just small gesture that can go a long way,’’ said Monge.
The Stingers basketball teams will play their second to last away games of the season against Bishop’s University on Feb. 20.