Last Sunday afternoon, the nationally fifth-ranked Concordia Stingers’ women’s hockey team hosted the sixth-ranked Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks at the Ed Meagher Arena.
The Stingers, looking to bounce back from their miserable 5-1 loss to the hands of the McGill Martlets, retaliated with a vengeance to win the game 6-3.
The Lady Bees scored four minutes into the first period when forward Leanne McPhee took advantage of the Hawk’s poor defence.
Both defenders got caught up in a scramble behind their own net, leaving McPhee alone with the puck in the low slot. McPhee made no mistake and wired a shot past Hawk’s goaltender Cindy Eadie, taking a 1-0 lead.
Laurier responded later in the period, scoring two goals within four minutes and snagging a 2-1 lead into the first intermission.
The Lady Bees came out flying in the second period, dominating the play and pinning Laurier in their defensive zone for the better part of 10 minutes. Concordia scored three unanswered power play goals in that time frame, taking a 4-2 lead.
Concordia forward Dominique Rancour scored the first of the three, when she put the puck top shelf off a point shot rebound at 6:29.
The second goal came three minutes later by forward Kendra Macdonald when she dug a puck out of a scramble in front of Laurier’s net and flipped it over a sprawled out Hawks goalie.
With 10 minutes still remaining on the clock, Rancour took a shot off linemate Marie-Claude Allard and dumped it into the net for her second goal of the game and earning her team’s 4-2 lead
From that point on, Concordia never lost the lead. Laurier added one goal in the third while the Lady Bees scored two others, including an open-net goal, to seal the win 6-3. For Concordia Head Coach Les Lawton, the win left him only semi-satisfied. “We weren’t as sharp as we could be today, we looked a little sluggish but we’re starting to see some good things from people,” Lawton said.
Reflecting on the overall picture, Coach Lawton said that he was happy with the improvement in his team’s play but there was still more work to be done.
“We’re still not where we want to be [at this point in the season] but we’re better than last week, which was the main goal we set earlier in the week,” he explained.
Team captain Allard, who led her team in points along with team-mate MacDonald, with a goal and two assists each, saw this game as an important one on a long road to a CIS championship. “We had a great week of practices,” Allard said.
“Basically we have two choices, we can write this year off as a bad year or commit to going all the way and win the championship, but if we want to get there it starts with games like today.”
She also praised her teammates for being able to put a tough loss behind them and replace the bitter feelings of a poor performance with hard work and positive attitudes.
“We really battled back from last week’s loss, it was a total team effort. People were ready today, everybody was positive and wanted to win,” she concluded.
The Lady Bees will try to carry over their winning attitude into next weekend as they travel to Carlton next Saturday, and play host to UQTR on Sunday.