Stingers own worst enemy in 5-1 loss to Ridgebacks

Back-up goalie Olivier Tremblay started this game. Photo by Hannah Ewen.

Men’s hockey team have now lost three in a row, and four of last five

Unable to generate any offence, the Concordia Stingers men’s hockey team lost 5-1 against the University of Ontario Institute of Technology Ridgebacks Saturday night at the Ed Meagher Arena.

Entering the game with two consecutive losses, the Stingers couldn’t generate enough shots on net and scoring chances to get the win—leading to a frustrated group of players.

“Guys are gripping their stick a little tighter,” said defenceman Carl Neill. “The past few games, we haven’t been able to put the puck in the net. Guys start to think back and worry—we’re putting too much stress on our shoulders.”

“It’s not an excuse—they played well,” said head coach Marc-André Élement about the Ridgebacks. “Their team were in the shooting lanes and played a really good game.”

The Stingers are now 4-5-1 on the season, but still sit in a playoff spot. Photo by Hannah Ewen.

Down 3-0 early in the second, Neill scored a beautiful goal on a tic-tac-toe play which seemed to energize the crowd. With the momentum shifting midway through the second, the Stingers killed off an important penalty while also hitting the goal-post on a scoring chance.

Yet, with under two minutes left to play in the period, the Ridgebacks’s aggressive counter-attack led to another big penalty. On the power play, Tyler Mayea scored on a hard one-timer from the top of the right circle, a turning point in the game and a demoralizing backbreaker for the Stingers.  

Adding salt to the wound, while leaving the ice during the second intermission, Stingers’s goaltender Olivier Tremblay took an uncharacteristic roughing penalty showcasing his frustration.

“Indiscipline,” said Neill about what went wrong. “Our penalty kill isn’t doing the job and, when that’s the case, you can’t take too many penalties.”

Taking full advantage of the Stingers’s frustration and an uneventful third period, Ridgebacks defenceman Kyle Locke agitated Concordia players for the remainder of the game.

“It’s always like that in hockey, we have to keep our self-control,” said Élement. “I told the guys to relax. We’ll get back at work on Monday, do a lot of video work, and be ready for McGill next Friday.  We had a tough weekend, it happens, we just need to focus on the positives, let go of the negative and build on that.”

On a positive note, Élement showcased his leadership abilities by calling an unexpected time-out with just under 10 minutes to play. He could be seen encouraging and motivating his players with vigor, even though the game was out of reach.

Main photo by Hannah Ewen. 

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