The Concordia women’s basketball team didn’t perform anywhere near as good as their capable of when they suffered a narrow 61-58 loss to Quebec’s top squad in the Laval Rouge et Or this past weekend.
Despite the road loss, however, there is an obvious silver lining to be taken away from this contest. The Stinger’s, much like their competition, were atrocious in several departments including turnovers, of which the women had 22, and shot selection, which can be seen in their 37 per cent field goal percentage. Where’s the silver lining, you ask?
They almost won.
The early minutes of this match had the Stingers on the verge of running away with it as they jumped out to a quick 14-7 lead. But Laval would climb back quickly.
Both offences showed early on that they were going to try to use their centres as much as possible to run their offence. The system worked well to start but both teams developed some bad habits that included ill-advised passes that were picked-off easy and often.
It wasn’t all that ugly as Concordia guard Graziella Charles was a force to be reckoned with on the boards in the first half as she would go on to finish the game with seven rebounds. Fourth-year centre Anne-Catherine Leduc was also a consistent threat for Concordia, as she would step up with a team-high 18 points.
Unfortunately, Leduc was often times the only thing keeping Concordia close to Laval as the team’s top scorers Marie-Jose Raposo and Pascale Morin both seemed a bit out of sorts.
After heading into halftime trailing 37-31 Concordia looked to come out with some added determination in the second half. Amongst those that did was rookie centre Emilie Ruel who got to see some more action and responded with solid play at both ends.
However, the Rouge et Or retaliated with stellar offensive play from Caroline D’Amours and Chantalle Bellevance who racked up 19 and 14 points respectively. But to give an indication of how difficult this game was, D’Amours and Bellevance combined for ten of their team’s 20 turnovers.
The teams continued to battle closely into the final minute as Raposo started showing some rhythm and leadership by taking her game up a notch. Unfortunately the Stingers would struggle to get off a good shot in the final minute as Laval would just barely hang on for the victory.
“We had a lot of trouble adjusting to their defence tonight,” Coach Keith Pruden said I explaining the loss.
After Friday’s game it became more apparent that these teams will provide an entertaining match-up when they will likely face each other in the playoffs in a few weeks. “They’ve been a confident team for many years. They never quit and they fight until the game is over,” Leduc said. “We know we need to win these games. We just beat ourselves.”