After losing on Friday night to the last-placed Carleton Ravens, you might think the Stingers women’s hockey team’s morale would be down.
The Stingers rebounded from Friday’s loss to beat the fifth-ranked McGill Martlets 2-1 at McGill’s McConnell Arena thanks to goals from rookies Emmy Fecteau and Léonie Philbert.
Fecteau opened the scoring on the first shot of the game when she walked into the Martlets zone and ripped a wrister from the slot past McGill goalie Tricia Deguire. Léonie doubled the Stingers lead after burying a rebound short side on a first period power play. Deguire would finish the game with 24 saves.
“We were bummed after [Friday’s] game,” said head coach Julie Chu after the win. “No one likes to lose. In the locker room, they were taking it hard, but we said ‘it’s okay, taste the bitterness and bottle it up, and don’t let it discourage you, let it fuel [you].’It was awesome to see how our team came out in the first period.”
From there, things got a little tougher.
McGill came flying out of the gate in the second period, outshooting the Stingers 18-10. Stingers goalie Alice Philbert, after being given a rest on Friday, was forced to make some key saves, including a stretching toe save on a McGill 2-on-1. Alice would finish the game with 31 stops, and improve to 8-0 on the season. Alice currently leads the RSEQ with a 1.55 GAA and is second in save percentage with a .940 (Deguire leads the division with a .941).
The Stingers had to rely on their goaltending, shot blocking, and a quick stick check here and there to keep McGill from tying the game during their second period onslaught.
“We survived the second period,” said Chu. “We’re not delusional. The first ten minutes of the second, McGill really did a good job buzzing in our defensive job and we didn’t do a good job tracking and winning our one-on-one battles. They were on our heels.”
Lea Dumais would cut into the Stingers lead with a deflection that snuck by Philbert halfway through the second period, but that would be McGill’s only goal as the Stingers would throw everything at the Martlets in the defensive end.
The Stingers wouldn’t be as dangerous as they were in the first period, but when it mattered, they managed to frustrate the Martlets. With only a few minutes left in the third period, the Stingers were able to control the puck down low in the Martlet zone, killing precious time.
“This team is awesome,” said Chu. “They find a way. We’re still figuring out what our character is as we go into new situations. I like what I saw today.”
The Stingers will play the Carleton Ravens in Ottawa on Dec. 1
- I complained on Nov. 1 that not enough arenas have distinct features after the Stingers played the Carabins at CEPSUM. Turns out I forgot about McGill’s McConnell Arena and the visiting team’s upstairs dressing room. Teams have to climb up and down stairs to get from the ice to the room. Incredible design.
Feature photo by Cecilia Piga. Graphic by Matthew Coyte.