Concordia’s women’s basketball team couldn’t beat the pesky Martlets squad
After upsetting the third-ranked team in the country—the Laval Rouge et Or—in the semi-finals, the Concordia Stingers women’s basketball team was defeated in the conference championship by the McGill Martlets, 63-51. The Martlets were crowned champions for the sixth season in a row.
When asked whether or not the hard-fought game against Laval affected the Stingers’ energy, head coach Tenicha Gittens gave an emphatic “no.”
“We had a day in between [each game],” Gittens said, adding the team had no reason to be fatigued going into the championship game.
The Martlets were simply the more efficient and more composed team, lead by their star player, centre Alex Kiss-Rusk.
“[My shots] started going in,” Kiss-Rusk said. “We didn’t really change much in the second half. They started falling for me. I kept taking ‘em.”
Kiss-Rusk made her mark on the game, especially in the final quarter when the championship was on the line. With about two minutes left in the fourth quarter, she made a shot just as the Stingers were closing in on the Martlets. The basket gave her team a six-point lead.
However, the game would not have been so close for so long, if it weren’t for the efforts of Concordia’s star player, Richelle Grégoire.
In her last collegiate game, she was the only Stinger to score from the field in the first half. She shot a respectable six for 11 and picked up 16 points. The rest of her teammates went ice cold as they failed to get a basket on 17 attempts from the field.
Gregoire praised her teammates and coach Gittens for being a part of “the most fun” team she played with during her five-year stint at Concordia.
It was also the final game for Stingers guard Marilyse Roy-Viau, who has been a big leader for the team, providing them with the knowledge she’s picked up over her five seasons. She shared the same sentiments as her veteran teammate.
“This team right there is one of the best teams I have ever had,” Roy-Viau said. “The coaching staff is also the best I have ever had.”
Commonly referred to as “Ric” (Gregoire) and “Red” (Roy-Viau), the duo have left a lasting impression on the team.
Despite the loss, Roy-Viau knows the Stingers will be good for years to come.
“They are going to compete next year,” Roy-Viau said. “Whatever they have right now is the core, and they are just going to build on that and be in the finals again.”
One surprise from this season was the emergence of Stingers guard Jazlin Barker, who took on a bigger role and increased her production as the season went on. She vowed to keep it up next season.
“I am going to come out stronger from the start. I will train harder,” Barker said.