Concordia’s women’s basketball team lost to Laval while the men won
The Concordia Stingers women’s basketball team lost to the Université de Laval Rouge et Or on Thursday night by a score of 83-77 in overtime. Meanwhile, the men’s team took home a victory against the Rouge et Or, this time by a score of 68-54.
The Stingers had a chance to defeat the number-one-ranked team in the country in the closing seconds of the fourth quarter but failed to get any quality shots. Both teams went scoreless for a full two minutes before heading into overtime, where the Rouge et Or defeated the Stingers 83-77.
On Thursday night, there were six lead changes in the fourth quarter and the overtime quarter was close, until Laval jumped out to a 74-68 lead that Concordia just wasn’t able to come back from.
The game did not start well for the Stingers as the Rouge et Or dominated in terms of rebounds, and jumped out to a 19-12 lead in the first quarter. Then, in the second quarter, the Rouge et Or got more quality shooting from their players, which gave them a 40-30 lead at halftime.
In the third quarter, the Stingers mounted a comeback thanks to some Rouge et Or turnovers. At one point, Laval committed five of their 21 turnovers, which lead to easy baskets for the Stingers. However, the Stingers only managed to score 28 points off of the 21 turnovers.
“It doesn’t even matter what the score is. We gotta execute at all times,” said Stingers head coach Tenicha Gittens. “When we do, we always get good looks. It’s just a matter of knocking those shots and making those layups.”
Despite the loss, the Stingers had every opportunity to score, yet the team only made 31.9 per cent of their shots. Meanwhile, the Rouge et Or were able to rely on their shooters to make big plays.
With the score 57-56 for the Rouge et Or entering the fourth quarter, everything seemed to indicate that it was going to come down to the final shot—and it did. With just under three minutes to go, Stingers guard Marilyse Roy-Viau made two of her game-high eight free throws to tie the game at 66.
The Stingers had four players with double-digit points but no one was more important than Roy-Viau, who was involved in every aspect of the game.
For Gittens, there were plenty of positives to take away from the game against Laval.
“We just got to build on that [game], take from that and not lay down.” Gittens said. “It’s going to be hard as hell next time. Laval thinks that the game was way too close so they’re going to come and knock our heads off.”
The Stingers led the entire game en route to a 68-54 win. Most notably, Stingers forward Schneiders Suffrard had his biggest game of the season, scoring 21 points.
The first quarter displayed tough and gritty play from the Stingers, which gave them a 12-9 lead after the first quarter. In the second quarter, both teams picked up the pace. Despite having the lead at halftime, Stingers head coach Rastko Popovic felt the team could have played better.
“In the first half, the reason why it was a two-point game is because we didn’t score enough points,” Popovic said. “If we score 44, 22 in each quarter, I tell our guys if we can score like that and get to 80 points, nobody is beating us the way we defend.”
The Stingers responded well coming into the third quarter and raised their level of aggression. The quarter started with an acrobatic layup by Stingers guard Ken Beaulieu, then a three-pointer by Suffrard on the ensuing possession. Later in the quarter, Beaulieu made some impressive dunks and gave the Stingers a 45-35 lead.
In the fourth quarter, Laval tried to claw their way back into the game but were stymied by the Stingers’ defence.
With four minutes left in the game, Beaulieu put the game away for the Stingers with a slam dunk that increased their lead 58-48. Beaulieu finished the game with a double-double.
“That’s two double-doubles in a row. He’s finally starting to peek and play,” Popovic said. “When he gets those dunks and when he’s playing in passing lanes and rebounding like that, he just changes our team. He was first team all-star last year. He’s our best player. He does so many good things out here.”
Both the men’s and women’s teams will play the Rouge et Or on Feb. 4 at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. in Quebec City.