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McGill shows “total domination” vs. Stingers

by Archives October 21, 2008

Concordia Stingers women’s hockey head coach Les Lawton knows what it’s like to be a team that dominates its competition. Unfortunately for Lawton and the Stingers, they got a taste of the other side against the No. 1 team in the country, the McGill Martlets.
“It was total domination,” said Lawton after the 10-0 loss Sunday afternoon. “They are highly skilled, and they have done that to everyone, not just us,” he said.
“They’re well coached, they skate well, they’re a well-oiled machine and they showed us that today,” he said.
The Stingers came out strong in the first period keeping the Martlet shooters to the outside and allowing goaltender Stephanie Peck to see the shots coming towards her.
The Martlets had a 1-0 lead after the opening frame, converting a power play chance 3:20 into the period when Rebecca Martindale potted a centering pass to the far side of the net past goaltender Peck made 12 saves in the first period of her first regular season start as a Stinger.
Concordia forward Mallory Lawton, looking to make an impression in her first home game. She blocked three shots in the opening period, including two on a penalty kill in the final minute.
Peck came up big early in the second period. She made two big saves on McGill forward Alessandra Lind-Kenny in front of the net.
However, the Martlets were able to come up big later in the period. In a span of 5:39, McGill scored five goals to make the score 6-0.
Midway through the second, Lawton took Peck out and replaced her with Audrey Doyon-Lessard. Both goaltenders allowed five goals but neither could be faulted for the score.
McGill goaltender and national team member Charline Labonté wasn’t tested much, but came up big when she was. Her biggest save came right after Doyon-Lessard made two outstanding saves. The Stingers brought the puck up ice and forward Devon Rich had a scoring chance streaking down the left wing but couldn’t get the puck past Labonté.
After McGill’s five-goal second period, they added four goals in the final period including three power play goals.
“I know what it’s like to be in a position like McGill, where you’re up and you want to make teams pay for taking stupid penalties and that’s what they did,” Lawton said.
“We’ll learn from it,” Lawton said. “We have to learn that we can’t stop skating. After the first half of the game we stopped skating and we put ourselves in a position where the score was embarrassing.”
“If you watch the scoreboard and you get up by a few goals you tend to back off,” said McGill head coach Peter Smith. “But we can’t afford to back off. We have some young players we want to develop so we have to make sure we take something away from every game,” he said.
McGill forward Amy Soberano had three goals while Ann-Sophie Bettez had one goal and three assists to lead the Martlets offensively.
The Stingers opened their season with a 6-2 loss against the Ottawa Gee-Gees on Saturday in Ottawa.
Concordia got goals from Mary Jane O’Shea and Valerie Lepage-Barrette while Ottawa was led offensively by a hat trick by rookie Fannie Desforges.
The game was closer than the score would indicate, but Ottawa just capitalized on their opportunities, Lawton said.
Two of Ottawa’s goals were scored in a goalmouth scramble. One was scored after a Stinger defender gave her stick to goaltender Doyon-Lessard after hers was lost in a scramble. Another was scored after a Stinger defenceman fell, creating a 2-on-1 and another following a bad Concordia change.
The Stingers were trailing 3-0 in the second, but managed to make the score 4-2 after two periods, beating Ottawa goaltender Jessika Audet. Audet started her CIS career in the late 1990’s with Concordia and is in her final year of eligibility.
“[Ottawa’s] a team we’ll have to contend with,” Lawton said. The Quebec conference has two spots at the national championships this season after McGill won the title last year. That means the road to Antigonish doesn’t have to go through McGill, leaving Concordia, Ottawa and the Carleton Ravens fighting for the second spot.
Despite the loss, Lawton kept a sensible sense of humour. “[McGill] will have a relatively easy time in our league,” he said. “Hopefully we could get that second spot, go to Nationals. You only have to beat them once then and you never know what could happen when it comes down to one game.”

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