The Concordia men’s hockey team battled against the Patriotes of UniversitÃ© du QuÃ©bec Ã Trois-RiviÃ¨res on Wednesday, losing the close game 2-1 but putting forth their best effort all season.
“I thought we played good hockey,” head coach Kevin Figsby said, “Unfortunately, it was just one of those games where you play well and still lose.”
The Stingers skated hard and won their battles along the boards. The intensity level of the players was exactly where it should have been, and the team is re-developing the chemistry that was such a threat to opposing teams last year.
Brock McGillis was between the pipes for the Stingers. Concordia opened, scoring early on a beautiful unassisted wrap-around goal by forward Kyle Kelly at 2:33 into the first. Great individual efforts dictated the pace of the game; Cory McGillis was tripped up, stickhandled on his knees, and attempted to poke the puck past the Patriotes’ goaltender.
The Patriotes tied the game 1-1 late in the first on a shot from the right circle on the powerplay.
The scoresheet indicated that the Stingers were undisciplined, getting five penalties in the second period alone. The calls were marginal at best and definitely questionable; the referee once called tripping when the opposing player didn’t even fall.
The Patriotes tallied their final goal late in the second on another powerplay. Despite the score, the Stingers out-skated and out-hustled their opponents, but puck luck just did not seem to be on their side.
Stingers lose first bout with rivals
Last Friday, the men’s hockey team suffered a 5-2 loss against their cross-town rivals, the McGill Redmen.
The Stingers started the game well. At about seven minutes into the first, Cory McGillis opened the scoring to put Concordia up 1-0. The Stingers’ lead was short lived as just 12 seconds later, Redmen defenseman Ben Morse countered with the equalizer.
From then on, McGill took control of the game, scoring again five minutes later. They stayed ahead for the rest of the evening, adding another goal in the second period.
Late in the third, with McGill ahead 4-1, Concordia was able to cut the margin in half on the power play. With less than four minutes left in the game, Cory McGillis netted his second goal of the night from the point, ringing it off the crossbar and past goalie Hubert Morin. But it was too little, too late and the Redmen gave Concordia a final blow- scoring once more with less than a minute to go.
The Stingers are still looking for a win this season. They have lost their first four games and have been outscored by a margin of 19-8. Nevertheless, head coach Figsby says he’s not too bothered by the string of losses.
“I’m not really worried about that and that may sound extreme for a coach to say. But we still have five regular players that are not back in the lineup yet.”
Even though the Stingers didn’t get the result they were looking for against McGill, Figsby said the team showed some promising signs, especially when it came to the power play.
“We scored a goal on it…and we didn’t give up a goal on our penalty killing. So those are all positive signs we’re going to build on.”
The team will be looking to the road for their first win with upcoming games in Ontario. On Friday they take on Nipissing, then on Saturday they’ll face the University of Toronto.
Figsby said it’s a chance for the team to start fresh.
“We just have to rewind and start again right now, that’s all. We’ve got a talented hockey team. We’ve had some guys experience some growing pains in the first four games and we showed some really important signs.”
The Stingers will be back at home later this month. On Friday Oct. 30 they’ll take on U of T at 7:30 p.m.