Concordia women’s basketball team rang in
2008 with a 70-65 win against Bishop’s and a 78-49 victory over McGill. Following a tough 0-3 weekend playing in the Reebok Tournament, The Stingers hung in tough with the Bishop Gaiters in an electrifying overtime game. In the first half Concordia played very disorganized basketball-their plays weren’t working and they were taking poor shot choices. What kept them ahead was Bishop’s terrible field goal record; they sunk six out of 40 in the first half.
Chelsea Cassidy played strong on defence and Yasmin Jean-Philippe made a smart three-point-play by driving to the basket and drawing a foul.
By the end of the first half the Stingers were ahead 25-17. The Gaiters began closing in on the Stingers’ lead as soon as they hit the floor. In a flurry of Bishop’s offence the Stingers soon found their lead slimmed down to 29-24 . Jean-Philippe
managed to keep a calm head and was sinking
three-pointers against much taller defenders, going 3-4 from behind the arc.
In the last quarter the Stingers were showing their exhaustion. Their defence allowed shots from all over the key which the Gaiters exploited and eventually took a slim lead. Near the end of the game the Stingers began to show some grit, with Stephanie Ramonas playing tough on both boards and sinking a shot-clock buzzer beater to boost morale. Each foul the Stingers committed was crucial because
Bishop’s took two foul shots every time. The lead changed hands four times in the quarter, ending with a score of 55-55 at the end of regulation time.
In a five-minute overtime a different Concordia team came to play. They played controlled basketball, taking intelligent shots and sinking them. Stinger guard Ebony Morris scored eight of the Stinger’s 15 overtime points and Ramonas put the nail in the coffin with two foul shots to clinch
the win 70-65. Ramonas commented on the feeling of getting a such a moral-boosting win. “It feels good to win but we still have things to improve on. A win was nice, it would have been nicer not to go into overtime but it felt good and all the girls are happy.”
Concordia 78, McGill 49
The next evening Concordia faced cross-town
rival McGill. From the first whistle to the last the Stingers played a very organized and fluid game. Every player knew what they had to do and executed with smooth passing. Krystle Douglas sent a speedy pass to Ramonas who was wide-open under the basket. Felon Harris sent a through-traffic pass to Heather Eason who got the two points and picked up a foul. Rebounding was physical. Eason was putting up two or three shots and 5’4 guar Morris was bringing down the
ball over much taller Martlet forwards. Concordia dominated the last four minutes of play in the first half as the Martlets fouled on almost every possession. The Stinger led 38-24 at halftime. Eason played well in the second half, as was a key to the Stingers offense as a go-to forward
with good body position and a physical presence.
“Good offensive play is all about being in a good rhythm, and the ladies are starting to execute better in terms of the flow in the offence. When it reaches a certain point it’s easier to get good shots,” said Head Coach Keith Pruden. With forward Kristin Portwine back on the floor after two first half fouls the Stingers had more
depth in their line-up. By the end of the game the fouls were starting to pile up, and McGill was in-bonus shooting for almost half of the fourth quarter. Though they won their second straight game, the injury bug came back to strike Concordia yet again when Morris left the court with an
undisclosed injury. Her team finished the game though, and the final whistle closed the book on a convincing 78-49 victory. “The second half everything was clicking and it’s nice to see.” Said Stingers head coach Keith Pruden, “I was very
happy with that,” The Stingers’ next game is at home on January 12 against first-place Laval Rouge et Or. The Stingers snapped an eight-game losing streak and are now 2-4 in the regular season with ten games remaining.