It’s pretty uncommon for coaches to throw their lines in the blender after a win, but that’s exactly what Marc-André Élement did Friday night.
Hey, whatever works.
The Stingers came out looking great in the first period, moving their feet and battling hard. They were ready for this one.
The Université de Québec à Trois-Rivières (UQTR) looked good as well – like the 7th ranked team in Canada. However, that didn’t last very long. Just over two minutes into the game, Colin Grannary was sprung on a breakaway by who else than Tyler Hylland, and it was quickly 1-0 for the Stingers.
Near the end of the period, with the Stingers not spending much time in the Patriotes’ zone, Jean-Philippe Beaulieu sent a behind the back pass to Chase Harwell and it was 2-0 for the Stingers.
Defensively, they did not give UQTR any room to work with. It was all a part of the game plan, says Élement.
“We kept everything on the outside,” said Élement, “I’ll be honest with you, we played a boring game, but that’s what you need to do when you have key injuries in your line up.”
Five minutes into the second period, Loik Léveillé of the Patriotes wired a wrister past Marc-Antoine Turcotte.
2-1. Here we go, we have a game on our hands… or so we thought.
That’s all the Patriotes would get as the rest of the game was the Tyler Hylland show. The Stingers responded with two goals off the stick of Hylland. Hylland, with his three-point performance, poll vaulted himself into a five-way tie for the OUA scoring lead.
But the game didn’t end there, as William Leclerc would also get into the action and net his first goal of the season.
Leclerc was slotted on a line with Harwell and Beaulieu, who have struggled offensively this season, but that trio was one of the Stingers’ best of the night.
We haven’t been [scoring] but we’ve been playing really well,” said Harwell. “It felt really good. This game was a big statement to the league. We could play, and [everyone knows it now].”
With the Stingers’ victory, they are now only one point back of the Patriotes for second place in the OUA East division.
Tonight they face a tough test as they are on the road against the third nationally ranked Carleton Ravens
Photos by Laurence B.D.