Twelve Concordia Stinger penalties which the McGill Martlets turned into four goals would be all the help the No.1 team in the country would need to win the 40th annual Theresa Humes women’s
hockey tournament. Although the result can be taken as successful and the tournament does not count in the standings,
don’t think that the Stingers would consider the championship game, which they lost 7-0 to McGill, like a game that didn’t matter.
“This tournament is really something that we all wanted so bad,” said Stingers
goaltender Meggy Hatin-Léveillée, who has won the top goaltender award at the Theresa Humes tournament twice in her career. “I for sure don’t feel good about [the final],” she continued.
Hatin-Léveillée left the championship game midway through the second period
with an injury after McGill made the score 5-0. Audrey Doyon-Lessard finished
the game for Concordia, playing her first game since suffering an injury on Oct. 28 against Carleton.
In any game against the No. 1 ranked Martlets, one must stay disciplined in order to stand any measure of chance to win. However, only 17 seconds into the game Concordia took a penalty and McGill capitalized seven seconds later when Cathy Chartrand’s point shot was tipped past Hatin-Léveillée by Shauna Denis.
McGill made it 2-0 when Vanessa Davidson
fired a wrist shot from the right face off circle, also on a power play. The Martlets would score four of their seven goals on the power play, including
one on a two-player advantage. They also added a goal while there was a delayed penalty called on Concordia. McGill’s first power play unit of Denis, Davidson, Chartrand, Jasmine Sheehan and Ann-Sophie Bettez were on the ice for the first five Martlet goals. All five had at least two assists. Bettez, who had three assists, was named the tournament’s
top forward. She had two goals and four assists in the three games.
“It was a pretty disappointing result,” said Stingers forward Tawnya Danis. “We got into penalty trouble early on and we know how good their power play is,” she said. “Stupid penalties killed us.”
The near-perfection on the McGill power play was even more impressive because their quarterback, defending Quebec rookie of the year Catherine Ward, a key part of the powerplay, is in Germany representing Team Canada at the Under-22 women’s hockey championships.
“I thought we did alright 5-on-5,” said Stingers head coach Les Lawton. “But, this was as good as I have seen McGill play,” he said. “Their players are so skilled that with the extra time and space on the power play they will take advantage,” he said.
Concordia wasn’t without chances in this game, despite the score. When the game was 1-0 the Stingers had several chances, including two in the slot which allowed Charline Labonté to step up. The first was a shot from Esther Latoures
in the slot, and the second was less than two minutes later when Labonté
stopped Emilie Luck. Both opportunities
were snuffed, not only by the save, but because she didn’t allow a rebound.
“Despite the score, those chances made me feel that I contributed to the win,” Labonté said. “I kept our team in the lead, and then they took care of business,”
“We’re creating chances,” Danis said. “But we have to start burying them. They don’t leave the slot open and when they do we have to capitalize.”
The Stingers don’t have a lot of time to avenge the loss. When conference play starts again on Friday, Concordia will be at the McConnell Arena to face the McGill Martlets. They follow that game with a trip to Ottawa to face the Ottawa Gee-Gees.
“This game will be fresh in our minds,” said Stingers forward Angela Di Stasi. “We will remember this feeling and take our pride into that game,” she said.
Last year, the Stingers followed their second place finish in the Theresa Humes tournament with back-to-back losses in a key home-and-home series with the Carleton Ravens. This year they know the importance of starting the season off strong.
“We talked about that,” said forward Emilie Luck after their 5-1 win in the tournament opener against the Red Deer College Queens. “It’s on our mind.”
“This week we will regroup, forget about today’s game and start from fresh,” said Hatin-Léveillée. “We still did some good things over the weekend
[Friday and Saturday]. We have a huge weekend coming up and we will bounce back. Our team has character. We all believe in one another and that’s what great about this team. Nothing is out of reach,” she said.
Odds and Ends
*Ottawa goaltender Jessika Audet won the top goaltender award at the tournament. Audet played for the Stingers from 1995-2000, including the two national championship teams in 1998 and 1999. Because two of her five years at Concordia were before the sport was recognized by the Canadian
Interuniversity Athletic Union (CIAU; now (CIS)), she still had eligibility remaining. Her first regular season game with the Gee-Gees was a 1-0 shutout over Concordia at the Ed Meagher arena.
“It was weird to warm up at this end of the ice, instead of the other, but in the second period I had flashbacks,” Audet said after that first game on Oct. 12.
Concordia’s Victoria Johnstone was named top defenceman of the tournament *Moncton had the two of the top three scorers of the tournament. Mari