Only a dramatic championship shootout could have provided fans with a better finale at the 37th annual Theresa Humes women’s hockey tournament where the host Concordia Stingers (ranked #6 in CIS) took on the Laurier Golden Hawks (#2) Sunday afternoon.
Although the Stingers lost the final 2-1 on a goal that came with less than four minutes left in regulation, the tournament once again successfully served its purpose as a pre-national warm-up and measuring stick for competing teams. It also gave both fans and players the chance to get a look at the quality of hockey being played in schools in other parts of Canada.
Despite complaints that there was some inconsistent officiating over the course of the three-day competition, many still indicated that they were pleased with the attention and recognition that the tournament provides Concordia. “We learn a lot about oursleves as a team from this. We can’t look at the end result as that we lost the game,” assistant captain Jodi Gosse said.
There was a surprising, yet very much entertaining, level of physical competitiveness present between the teams on Sunday that started in the first period and set the tone for the rest of the game.
The opening frame also gave the Stinger faithful reason for concern as they had some difficulty clearing the puck in the early minutes.
Fortunately, Concordia broke out of their funk, and each team had their share of scoring chances but weren’t able to convert. But the deadlock wouldn’t last for very long once the second got underway.
Janie Brassard opened the scoring 5:20 into the period to give the home team a 1-0 lead. Then, just 24 seconds later, Fiona Alston would bring the celebration to an abrupt end by notching the equalizer for Laurier at
the other end to tie the game.
While both teams continued to threaten, the best chances were still going to the underdog Stingers who ultimately outshot their opponents 29-15. However, all those great chances didn’t amount to anything on the scoresheet and left the door open for Candice Djukic’s game-winning goal with 3:44 left on the clock.
“This shows us things that we can work on and use to get ready for the rest of the season,” said a visibly exhausted Cecilia Anderson after her third straight day in nets.