Concordia lose to their cross-town rivals, McGill, on Saturday, 2-1
The Concordia Stingers women’s hockey team suffered a 2-1 loss at home against the McGill Martlets on Nov. 19. This is the second 2-1 loss the Martlets have handed the Stingers this season.
“It’s just another game,” said Stingers captain Tracy-Ann Lavigne. “We know that we have plenty more games against them, and we know we can get them.”
The game started off with bad discipline on behalf of the Stingers, as they were awarded three penalties in the opening period. However, the Martlets were unable to capitalize on those opportunities. Stingers goaltender Katherine Purchase was a major part of the team’s penalty kill and had to make big saves. The Martlets outshot the Stingers 10-2 in the first period.
Stingers head coach Julie Chu was happy with both her team’s penalty kill and her goalie’s play.
“We had a tough start with a few penalties early on, which gave [McGill] a bit of momentum. But we did a good job of killing those off,” Chu said. “Purchase played amazing in goal. She made some really big saves early on.”
The Stingers were able to gain momentum early in the second period with some power plays. They moved the puck well, but ultimately couldn’t beat Martlets goalie Tricia Deguire.
Concordia got into more penalty trouble early in the second period. They killed off a five-on-three and held McGill off the scoresheet after five power play attempts.
“McGill has a great power play,” Chu said. “They challenged us to really read the play and make some big stops.”
Midway through the second period, the Martlets opened the scoring after a weird play centre ice, where a Stinger player lost her stick and had it kicked away by a Martlet forward. Players are not allowed to interfere with equipment like that, however, no penalty was called. On the ensuing play, Martlets forward Nicole Howlett took a pass from forward Jade Downie and sent a wrist shot past Purchase to make the score 1-0.
The rest of the second period was a dogfight, with both teams demonstrating tons of speed. The Martlets had multiple rushes turned away by Purchase. The Stingers created chances by using speed to get to the net and created opportunities from rebounds.
For Lavigne, their play was a reflection of the team’s character.
“Our mentality is to never stop,” Lavigne said. “We just keep going.”
Late in the second period, the Martlets doubled their lead to 2-0. Purchase stopped a shot by McGill forward Mélodie Daoust, however, McGill forward Marie-Philip Lavoie was in front of the net to put in the rebound.
Before the period was over, the Martlets earned two penalties almost consecutively. The Stingers did not score in those final 30 seconds of the period during the power play, but were optimistic at intermission.
“It’s easy after 2-0 to get down,” Chu said. “They were excited about getting out into the third and to get a chance to continue chipping away.”
The Stingers started the third period on a five-on-three power play and made it count. Stingers defenceman Caroll-Anne Gagné one-timed a pass from forward Claudia Dubois, but her shot sailed just wide of the net. The puck then bounced to the front of the net after hitting the boards and Stingers forward Keriann Schofield was in the perfect spot to score, making it 2-1.
The Stingers continued to dominate, outshooting the Martlets 11-2 in the third, but fell just short of tying up the game.
Despite the loss, Chu liked what she saw from her team’s effort in the final period.
“I thought our girls got better as the game went on,” Chu said. “That third period, we were pounding them pretty hard and had a lot of good opportunities to score.”
The Stingers will now play the Ottawa Gee-Gees away from home on Nov. 27 at 2 p.m.