Get to know the Concordia women’s flag football family

The team is demonstrating impressive progress in only their third season.

It all started with the love for flag football and a lack of opportunities.

In 2021, students in Quebec joined forces with their institutions’ sports directors to create a flag football league. The universities involved include Concordia University, Université de Montréal, Université du Quebec à Montréal (UQAM), Université du Quebec à Trois-Rivières (UQTR), Université Laval, Universite de Sherbrooke, and Université du Quebec à Outaouais (UQO).

Eventually, the Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) created a flag football pilot project which has been running for three years, now being extended for a fourth.

Sara Parker, Elyane Corneau-Dulude and Stéphanie Nazarov were the students who pushed for Concordia University to be involved in the possible flag football league. Corneau-Dulude and Nazarov are no longer with the team, but Parker is currently in her third year and serves as the offence captain for the Concordia Flag Football team and the quarterback of Canada’s national women’s flag football team. She will compete in Finland from August 25 to 30 at the 2024 IFAF Flag Football World Championship.

Besides Parker, the team is led by head coach and defensive coordinator Alexis Labonté, offensive coordinator Lovinski Geli, assistant coach Sydney Roche, team captain Amélie Brisebois Bentler and defence captain Leanne Majeau. Roche is an alum player in her first year of coaching, while it is the third year for Labonté and Geli.

The Concordia Flag Football team has been working hard to prove themselves, which shows in their results. The team finished first in the league this 2023-24 season with 11 wins and one loss. They made it to their first-ever finals after defeating the Laval Rouge et Or 38-14 in the semi-finals, but they lost to the Université de Montréal Carabins 38-13.

One common aspect the team shares is the sense of family they feel together. “Having each other’s back and bringing each other up when we’re down has kind of been the motto of our team,” said second-year player Victoria Di Loreto. “We’ve had some ups and downs, but when we have ups, I feel that the entire team feels it together.”

Loreto enjoys flag football because it requires using both feet and hands. She started playing soccer as a goalkeeper but never felt the “family feeling” on her team until flag football. 

Second-year player Frédérique Paul shares similar sentiments. “My favourite part about the sport is the friendships you make when you play. It’s a family, really,” she said. “I know we are always here for each other.”

Paul fell in love with the sport when she was 12 years old. She wanted to play tackle football but decided to try “flag” since women couldn’t play football at her high school. Paul even chose Concordia for its flag football program.

Team Captain and third-year player Amélie Brisebois Bentler started playing because her dad was a fan of college football. They would play catch together in their front yard, but she never knew if she could play on an official team until she learnt about her high school’s flag football team. 

Bentler played rugby in her first year at Concordia, with the intention of ultimately playing flag football as soon as the program started. She had many memorable moments with the team.

“I love the victories that we’ve gotten as a team, but I love being involved in the team management as well,” said Bentler. “We’re a small organization and we’re just starting, so we have to get our funding and put our name out there. We’re working really hard on our social media and financial state right now. I think it’s been very memorable to build the program from scratch.”

Although the Concordia Flag Football team is a small organization, they are making a name for themselves through their success and victories. The team even recently won a tournament in Laval.

Université Laval held their first edition of the Provincial Flag Football Tournament on Feb. 10. Concordia defeated team Subzero in the final to bring home their first banner of the season.

The flag football team celebrates their Provincial Flag Football Tournament win on Feb. 10
Credit: Laury-Anne Potvin

“The team Subzero consists of girls from Montreal who are representing Canada in the next world championship in Finland, so it felt great to win against them in the finals,” said Loreto. She mentioned the win was even more rewarding as they had previously lost against team Subzero before meeting again in the finals.

Coming off the tournament win in Laval, the team will play in the third edition of the ConU Tournament on April 7 at the Stinger Dome.

Even though the Concordia Women’s Flag Football team has yet to become varsity, they remain one of Concordia’s most successful teams.

Light up your night with Illumi

Illumi’s third installation has returned back to Laval

The third installation of Illumi is back and better than ever. Being a Laval native, I have visited Illumi for the past three years, ever since it began back in 2019.  Illumi is the biggest village of lights in all of North America, according to a blog published by Narcity. This year, I was truly impressed with all the new light installations and upgrades. With the COVID-19 restrictions easing up here in Quebec, they came back bigger and stronger.

Back when Illumi started in 2019, I visited with my family and we did the walking tour of the exhibit which felt as if I walked into a fairytale land. The twinkling lights were magical and got me into the Christmas spirit. However, in the back of my mind it reminded me of Jardin botanique’s Jardins de Lumière, which I also try to attend yearly. Overall, I felt that the first year of Illumi was a nice way to start the holiday season.

When I visited in 2020, I felt like I was ripped off, to be blunt. I paid close to $60 for my sister and I to see Illumi from the car. The whole drive didn’t even last the entire hour and I felt they had reused a lot of the installations and lights that I saw in the first year.

However, Illumi had promoted themselves pretty ferociously around Laval and Montreal, so I was very much enticed to return for the third consecutive year, which was now a walking edition. I hoped that the disappointment from last year wouldn’t happen again given that more than 80 percent of the light structure is new, according to Illumi’s website.

This year’s edition of Illumi allowed visitors to either do the exhibit from the car or on-foot experience. I truly felt that was a great option, even with the COVID-19 restrictions easing up, as there are still people that feel uneasy around others.

Additionally, if you would like to enter Illumi by foot this year, you will have to show proof of vaccination in order to enter. While going out to movie theaters and concerts is a no-go for people that are not vaccinated, Illumi serves as an option as something to go out, as a vaccination passport is not required for the car version of Illumi.

The first light installment that you are greeted with when you first enter is the new land of the vegetables, featuring a bunch of fruits and vegetables with cute faces on them. I thought this first part of the exhibit was cute, but it didn’t necessarily take my breath away.

I feel that the highlight of the exhibit and also a new addition to Illumi is definitely the land of the dinosaurs. I highly suggest taking your kids here if they’re fans of Jurassic World, as a walk through the park will give them a taste of what it’s really like to be walking among the giants. All the dinosaurs and other animals move, and there’s a massive mammoth which reminded me of Manny from the Ice Age movies. While looking around at this exhibit, I was able to talk to a visitor named Anthony Matano. He gave me his first hand experience, saying, “Having gone in blind, I was pleasantly surprised by the unique and original light installations that wouldn’t typically be expected at a Christmas-themed light exhibit. My favourite section was the dinosaur world simply due to its originality, it made me feel like I was in a real life Jurassic Park.”

Another thing I wanted to add was that, while I was walking through the exhibit I saw the cars passing on the other side of the exhibit. There were even stop signs and crossing guards for people to cross the different paths at Illumi.

Without spoiling too much, I strongly urge everyone to come to Laval and visit Illumi. This year’s edition will definitely be worth the drive and the smiles on your loved one’s faces.


Photos by Dalia Nardolillo


Migrants rallying together to protest Immigration centre living conditions

Protest currently halted to re-think a longer and more effective strategy

According to advocate group Solidarity Across Borders (SAB), a group of seven detained migrants held at the Immigration Holding Centre (IHC) in Laval initiated a seven-day hunger strike in protest against the centre’s living conditions and lack of COVID-19 care between Feb. 28 and March 6.

SAB is calling for their release from the holding centre, stating that the current conditions migrants are living under are inhumane and unacceptable. The Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) confirms that there are currently 17 migrants detained at the centre, seven of whom went on strike.

The first wave of protests initially started Feb. 15 by a lone migrant, under the pseudonym Marlon, who went on a hunger strike after testing positive for COVID-19 at the centre. SAB spokesperson Bill Van Driel says that after an 11-day protest, Marlon regained his strength for a few days before joining the other six migrants who decided to also protest against forced solitary confinement and unsanitary living conditions.

“From the moment that there was a confirmed COVID case at the centre, they put all detainees in solitary confinement,“ Van Biel said. The detainees state that being held under confinement, even without showing symptoms of COVID-19, is unjust and inhumane. In solitary confinement, detainees are held in cells all day, only having the right to leave for a limited amount of time to use the phone or to bathe.

However in an email received by The Concordian, Mark Stuart, spokesperson for the CBSA, contradicts SAB, claiming no protest occurred at the Laval IHC. 

“The Canada Border Services Agency can confirm that there were no detainees on food protest on the week of March 1, 2021 at the Immigration Holding Centre in Laval and there are still no food protests at the IHC as of March 15, 2021,” Stuart said. However, the CBSA did confirm that there was in fact a hunger protest, but at a different provincial facility.

According to SAB, the added inability for family or attorney visitation due to COVID-19 has also taken a toll on the migrants detained there.

“That creates a lot of difficulty for people, it creates psychological difficulty of having less contact and being cut off from the outside world, especially for people facing deportation,” Van Biel said.

The CBSA also disputes the allegation that they forbid visitations from attorneys, claiming they do allow lawyer visitation at their facilities across Canada. 

“Regardless of location of detention all detainees have access to legal counsel or a representative, in person or over the phone, at any point throughout their detention,” Stuart said.

Through SAB, the seven detainees released a declaration letter describing the things they’ve experienced. The declaration recounts mistreatments the detainees have faced, including COVID-19 negligence, unsanitary living conditions, and other negative experiences.

“Some of the detainees have already contracted COVID-19. Others complained of pain similar to the symptoms of COVID but were given only Tylenol. We are in a lot of pain,” the letter says. “We had also been confined to separate rooms without receiving any psychological assistance. We are distraught and very fearful for our health.”

“The sanitary measures taken by the immigration officers are clearly insufficient.”

Stuart claims that since the beginning of COVID-19, the CBSA has ensured precautionary and additional steps to sanitize cells to help prevent the spread of the virus between detainees.

“In addition to standardized cleaning procedures, the CBSA has put in place additional measures to disinfect the premises and facilities where detainees and staff are located. Maintenance crews have increased the frequency of cleaning the bathrooms, common areas, reception area, etc.”

Though the CBSA claims that conditions are being taken care of, now more than ever, Van Biel doesn’t believe in what the CBSA claims they’re doing. 

“The conditions in the immigration centres are terrible,” Van Biel said. “The conditions of these detention centres are always terrible, even when compared to other prisons in Canada.”

According to SAB, migrants communicated to each other by means of yelling from cell to cell, and SAB organizers assume that was the method that sparked the large hunger strike.

Van Biel says that after seven days, the protest was halted to re-think a different long-term strategy all while attempting to keep steady pressure at the IHC.

“We are asking to be released from the Laval detention centre because it is a place where the virus can spread, and it is only a matter of time before we are all infected,” the letter says.


No statement has been released on what the next method of protest will be.



Stingers women’s and men’s basketball teams finish their seasons on different notes

Women’s Game

The Concordia Stingers women’s basketball team offered a great show, but ultimately lost 60-57 to the Université de Laval Rouge et Or on Saturday afternoon at Concordia Gym.

The Stingers had a tough first half, trailing 35-24 midway through the game. The team allowed key three-point baskets, and seemed lost on the court. However, they came back strong in the second half, controlling the ball for most of the remaining time.

Head coach Tenicha Gittens said that her halftime talks with the players shook them off. She said she told her team that they had to finish the right way.

“You can just go out there and [just kind of play], or go out there and make it hard for them to compete,” Gittens said. “They went out there and played their heart out.”

Despite not having any impact on the rest of their Réseau du Sport Étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) season, Gittens was pleased to see her players show up the way they did against the Rouge et Or.

“We obviously knew it had nothing to do in terms of playoff hopes, but it still did in terms of going out there and competing [until the end],” Gittens said. “It gives our fans something to look forward to coming into the next season, and even us for the coaches and players.”

Gittens added she’s still proud of her team despite not finishing with the same result as last season, where they went to nationals.

“I don’t think I had one player who was 100 per cent healthy [this season],” Gittens said. “I always want more out of them, so as a coach you’re never really satisfied. Yet, overall, they showed a lot of [effort and character].”

The Stingers finish the 2019-20 season in last place of their division with a 4-12 record. 

Men’s Game

The Stingers men’s basketball team finished their 2019-20 RSEQ season with a convincing 92-68 win over the Université de Laval Rouge et Or, also on Saturday afternoon at Concordia Gym.

It was the fourth and final regular season contest between the two teams. The Stingers had won the previous three games, with two of them having been decided by only five points.

After scoring 15 points and leading by just two points after the first quarter, the Stingers got their offence going, almost doubling their offensive production from the first 10 minutes in the next two quarters. That good stretch, along with their good defensive play helped the Stingers to take a serious lead early in the game.

“We know what the Rouge et Or will do, so it’s about us [being positioned and everything],” said forward Olivier Simon. “I think we just need to follow our defensive game plan. When we are winning just by five points, it’s because we did something wrong.”

Stingers head coach Rastko Popovic said the team’s defence was better today than it was in games they won by just a few points, including those two against the Rouge et Or earlier this season. He said the roster available for the game also helped.

“This is the first game we play with our full roster since [early January],” Popovic said. “We’ve had all twelve players playing today, so it was a good team win in order to get ready for the playoffs.”

The Stingers will play their RSEQ semifinal game against the Bishop’s University Gaiters this Wednesday, at 7 p.m. at Concordia Gym. The teams each won two of the four head-to-head battles this season, with the Gaiters winning the most recent two.

Photos by Alex Hutchins


New migrant detention centre set to replace Laval Immigration Holding Centre in 2021

“These people are not at all dangerous in any way. None of the people who are at the detention centre have any criminal record.” – Richard Renshaw, a Roman Catholic priest who regularly visits migrants in detention centres.

There have been several events and protests at Concordia University, and in Montreal, over the past couple of years over concerns about asylum seekers in migrant detention centres in Canada.

In 2016, the federal government released its plan to replace the current migrant detention centres across the country through their National Immigration Detention Framework. The government allocated up to $138 million to transform the immigration detention system in Canada.

“The Government of Canada is committed to exercising its responsibility for detentions to the highest possible standards, with physical and mental health and well-being of detainees, as well as the safety and security of Canadians as the primary considerations,” said Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness in a public statement.

Richard Renshaw, a Roman Catholic priest who pays friendly visits to migrants in detention centres, said recent protests started in 2011. “In a number of detention centres, there was a hunger strike of the people inside, refugees that were being held there, because of the conditions,” he said.

The latest event was an information session held on Nov. 20 at the Quebec Public Interest Research Group at Concordia, hosted by QPIRG McGill and Solidarity Across Borders, a migrant justice organization based in Montreal.

“The men and women are separated, and usually the children are kept with the women,” said Renshaw. “They can see each other during visiting hours.”

Renshaw explained that in some cases when Canada tries to negotiate with the country of origin of asylum seekers to return them, the negotiation could take years – so they must stay in the detention centres or prisons until it is resolved.

But some said building new detention centres would not be enough to fix the situation- there needs to be systemic change.

SAB and other grassroots groups have been fighting the construction of the replacement migrant detention centre in Laval since 2016. The movement demands the construction to stop and for “Canada to cease using detention to control and limit the movement of migrants.”

There are now three official migrant detention centres in the nation, one in Toronto, Vancouver, and Laval. According to data found on the government of Canada website, Quebec sees the most asylum claims in the country; 97 per cent this year so far. In provinces and cities that do not have a migrant detention centre, migrants are placed in jail.

“A third of the people who get sent to detention end up in actual prisons,” said Renshaw.

Renshaw said the main reasons people are detained is because the border agent who processes them feels they might not show up to their upcoming hearing, or because they are unsure about their background or their identity. If there is any hesitation, they are put into detention.

According to data gathered by the government of Canada, this year, between January and October, 97 per cent of asylum seekers have entered through Quebec, totaling 13,372 people so far.

The Laval Immigration Holding Centre (LIHC) has a capacity of 109 people, and according to Stop the Prison, the new one that will be replacing the LIHC will have a total capacity of 158. Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) said at any given time there is an average of 450 to 500 individuals detained under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

Renshaw said the LIHC will be run as a medium-security prison, as that is the standard that the CBSA uses.

“They can be there for three or four days while they work things out, or they can be there for a month, or a year, or five years – there’s no limit,” said Renshaw.

Only the people who are detained or work at the centres see the inside. Visitors are allowed in the visitation room and nowhere else.

“They’ve told me that they have rooms where there are four or five in the same room, and they have meals which are standard, rather unspiced bland food,” said Renshaw. “These people are not at all dangerous in any way. None of the people who are at the detention centre have any criminal record.”

Renshaw said protesters believe the system is ““retraumatizing traumatized people, for no particular benefit to society. They could be out working, and getting integrated into the society they’ve come to and want to be a part of.”


Graphic by Victoria Blair


Concordia 17 McGill 23: Despite loss, Stingers still manage to squeak into the playoffs

Down by a score with less than a minute left.

We’ve seen this situation before. The Concordia Stingers managed this type of exciting last-minute victory against Sherbrooke a couple weeks ago.

Alas, no resurrection this time.

The Stingers dropped their last regular-season game to McGill 23-17, finishing the year 2-6. But after the Sherbrooke Vert et Or lost to Laval Rouge et Or earlier in the afternoon, the Stingers still claimed the fourth and final playoff spot. They’ll play against defending U Sports champs Laval on Nov. 2.

As for this game, well, the Stingers haven’t made it easy on themselves all season, so why would this game be any different.

Turnovers. Check.

Injuries. Check.

Missed opportunities. Check.

The Concordia-McGill rivalry runs deep, and we saw it out there today. Post-whistle scrums, hard hits, chirping, and lots and lots of penalties.

Head coach Brad Collinson was clearly unhappy with his team’s performance after the game. When asked how he keeps the team grounded, he said all they had to do was “look at the score.”


If you just looked at the offensive stats, you saw some familiar trends to close out the season. James Tyrrell, who despite taking a nasty hit in the first quarter, managed four catches for 75 yards, finishing an incredibly impressive regular season. Rookie phenom Jeremy Murphy led all receivers with six receptions for 100 yards and two touchdown catches.

“I mean, I played a great game,” said Murphy. “But at the end of the day, we didn’t win so I don’t care.”

Finally, the individual performance of quarterback Adam Vance, who went 24/42 for 334 yards, two touchdowns, two interceptions and two fumbles. With that, the American quarterback has surpassed 2,000 passing yards on the season.

The offence struggled to gather momentum until the final minutes of play. A good run? Next play was a fumble. A nice completion? Sike, penalty flag. Luckily for the Stingers offence, its defence was there to bail them out, time and time again.

They held McGill quarterback Dimitrios Sinodinos to 9/22 for 69 yards in the air. Considering how strong Sinodinos has been throughout this season, that’s an impressive feat.

“Defence was the only reason we were in this game,” said Vance. “You gotta tip your cap to them because that’s a good football team. I know it’s discouraging to have to go out and play defence every five minutes, so you gotta respect it.”

Linebacker Sam Brodrique led the way for the Stingers with 7.5 tackles, who along with the nine other seniors, played in his final game at the Stingers Stadium. After playing in last year’s East-West Bowl, Brodrique is one of the top draft-eligible players on this team.

“It’s been great. I’ve had a lot of coaches, a lot of changes,” said Brodrique. “I hope this last change was for the best and I hope the team builds from there. Even though we lost a lot of games this year, we’re a better as a team honestly. I hope they build from that.”

This was a slugfest from start to finish. A long, drawn out affair that didn’t make for great entertainment. Then the fourth quarter. With McGill up by six points, the Stingers began their march downfield. Vance evaded sacks, made great reads, found his receivers, and even made the runs himself. This put his team with a 1st-and-10 on McGill’s 11-yard line with three attempts to win the game. First down, an Adam Vance run for six yards. Second down, an incomplete pass to Tristan Mancini. Third and final down, with only 20 seconds left on the clock, a corner pass to Tyrrell that was knocked out of the air by the McGill corner. Turnover on downs.

No one was happy about the way this game, or this season ended. But at the end of the day, the Stingers are still in the postseason. Speaking of which…

We talking ‘bout playoffs???

The Stingers will take on the Laval Rouge et Or on Nov. 2 in Quebec City. Last time these met, things didn’t go well for the Stingers. The team is hoping for a different result this time around with an RSEQ finals berth on the line.

“Back to the drawing board,” said Vance post-game. “We still have another game, we gotta go back to Quebec City and play a good football game. We’ll sob about this one tonight and get into the film room tomorrow. We got to game plan against them, we’ll probably see something similar because obviously it worked.”

“One of our goals was to make the playoffs,” said Collinson. “Now we just need to go out there and compete.”

“I think today we only played one half,” said Brodrique. “Next game, we gotta focus up and play two halves. Last time we went there, it wasn’t really great. We have to bounce back from that. For the team, having a good game against Laval would be good to follow up and this season. They have a good running game, so we gotta have a great gameplan.”

“We can’t afford to just play one half,” said Murphy. “That’s it. We gotta play better than the last time we played them that’s for sure, we can’t get stomped again.”


  • A scary situation with James Tyrrell not being taken out of the game after a clear head-to-head hit. I don’t understand why no one on the sidelines made that call.
  • This year’s senior class included a number of key players, the list is Vance, Tyrrell, Sam Nadon, Zamaad Gambari, Jordan Hurley, Jersey Henry, Sam Brodrique, Gordi Lang, Joel Slavik, Thiery Taillon and Michael Asibuo.

Feature photo by Arianna Randjbar


Yum or Yikes: Oregon

Looking forward to a night out after midterms with my best friends, we decided to try something different. We went to Oregon, a hip wine and tapas-style restaurant in Laval’s Ste-Rose district. We were in the mood to wine and dine for a good time, but didn’t want the trouble of heading downtown. 

Oregon has a small menu with 10 main plates, four side dishes and an option of oysters and a cheese/charcuterie board. They serve three different desserts and have a lengthy wine menu. At first glance, the menu online seemed reasonable and I looked forward to trying it out. I came in with a raging appetite but I was disappointed to find out it was a tapas-style restaurant only once I was seated – I went in expecting larger portions. If I had known before, it wouldn’t have been an issue. I will take the blame for lack of prior research. 

Oregon is tucked in a small strip mall on Curé-Labelle Boulevard with very limited parking spaces – I had to park in another parking lot. Walking in, I immediately felt like I was in a wine-bar in Montreal’s Mile-End: the lights were dim, the music was loud, and the decor was designed to perfection.

The service was excellent; the waitress was very sweet and patient with us as we took a long time before deciding what to order. I went for the $25 dish of scallops with a bed of squash purée and hollandaise sauce, along with a $12 glass of French Sauvignon Blanc. One friend opted for the $18 rabbit confit, apple, mustard and fennel cavatelli, along with a $12 glass Italian white wine. The other chose the $21 agnolotti plate with broccoli, lamb bacon and Avonlea Cheddar alongside a glass of $12 Portuguese white wine. Both loved their plates but agreed the price felt hefty.

Photo by Brittany Henriques

My scallops were phenomenal and I enjoyed every bite, despite it being a smaller portion than expected. The atmosphere was very upbeat and the vibe was great for a wine-bar in Ste-Rose Laval. It definitely exceeded my expectations. 

My complaints would be the prices, the fact that I would often have to yell to speak to my friends because of the loud music, and the single bathroom. The music was fine at first, but it got tiring at the end; I felt like I couldn’t hear myself speak or think. The one-bathroom-for-all situation was sort of annoying because, with alcohol in your system, you constantly have to go. 

My friends and I well exceeded our stay as the last ones there past closing time, but they never made us feel like we had to leave, which I appreciated. 

I would definitely go back and recommend it to others because it was an overall great spot with a fun atmosphere and very good food, but the price is hefty for small portions.


4.5/5 for the food, 

2.5/5 for the price,

5/5 for the service, 

4/5 for the ambiance.


Concordia 6 Laval 41: Stingers get drowned out by the Rouge et Or

The Concordia Stingers football team falls to 0-3 on the season after losing 41-3 to the Laval Rouge et Or in the 33rd annual Shrine Bowl.

“We shot ourselves in the foot there,” said head coach Brad Collinson after the game. “We missed assignments, we threw a pick…it’s unfortunate but we gotta regroup and we’re going to get better.”

The defending U Sports champs were quick to put points on the board against the Stingers. On the first drive of the game, Laval running back Vincent Breton-Robert ran 42 yards for a touchdown. Five minutes later, they added a field goal. Another five minutes later a bad snap resulted in a safety against the Stingers. They added a 27-yard touchdown pass in the first minute of the second quarter.

It wasn’t until midway through the second quarter that Concordia managed to get some points of their own to make the score 19-3. That would be as close as the Stingers would get, only adding another Andrew Stevens field goal in the fourth quarter.

At that point, the game was mostly out of reach for the Stingers. Then the rain started coming down at the start of the third quarter.

A field goal, a touchdown and a mix of safeties and the Canadian football classic rouge, and Laval took the win with a comfortable 35 point spread.

Despite the blowout, the Stingers did show some positives. They limited Laval to 13 points in the second half. Even as Laval extended the lead, the Stingers defence continued to tackle hard and pressure Rouge et Or quarterback Samuel Chenard. Rookie receiver Tristan Mancini got his first U Sports catch on a massive 27-yard grab

“Felt great to get the first one of the way,” Mancini wrote in an interview post-game. “Hopefully I can get some more and help the team win!”

Stingers QB Adam Vance was hit hard a number of times, but still managed to go 15-28-1 for 206 yards.

“We had a better second half,” said receiver James Tyrrell who caught five passes for 97 yards. “The game showed our character, that we’re never going to stop fighting and that’s a good trait to have as a team.”

The rain only got stronger as the passing game ironically dried up. Both teams handed the ball off at almost every opportunity. Laval’s running backs had a ton of success on the ground. Vincent Breton-Robert led way with 134 yards on 14 carries, with his teammate Joanik Masses adding another 114 yards on 18 carries. On the Stingers, the run game was less successful. Glody Musangu was only able to pick up 34 yards on seven attempts.

“We want to get to fundamentals,” noted Collinson. We’re a bit banged up right now, we’re going to go into our bye week and we’re going to be okay.”

Vance looked frustrated at times, and it wasn’t difficult to see why. A late hit in the second quarter forced backup Olivier Roy into the game. Roy was then pressured heavily on his first play, threw a weak pass that was tipped and then picked off.

As the rain finally started to let up as the game ended, the two teams shook hands and lined up for the Shrine Bowl trophy ceremony. Tyrrell and linebacker Wael Nasri were named the team’s game MVPs.

The Stingers have a bye week coming up, but are back in action on Sept. 21 at home against the Sherbrooke Vert et Or.


Can I just say that on a deeply personal level, I hate the rain? Cool.

Feature photo taken by Laurence B-D



Rocket’s promo worth it for Concordia students

From travel to eating to the arena atmosphere, here are some thoughts about going to a game

For just $20, you can watch the second tier of professional hockey in North America. The Laval Rocket—the Montreal Canadiens farm team that plays in the American Hockey League (AHL)—has a ticket promotion called Student Wednesdays. For high school, CEGEP and university students, tickets at the box office are $20 for all Wednesday night games.

It’s the team’s first season, and their first Student Wednesday promotion happened on Oct. 25, when they played the Rochester Americans. I went to the game with two friends to see whether it’s really worth it for Concordia students. Here are tips for students who plan on going to Laval Rocket games.

Getting There

We left the Loyola campus at around 5:30 p.m. Even though the game started at 7:30 p.m., we thought traffic would have made us late. But the only traffic we really faced was on Décarie Boulevard. Considering we were headed there in the middle of rush hour, it was a smooth drive after Décarie. The arena is located on Boulevard de la Concorde, just off Highway 15 in Laval, and it took us about 45 minutes to get there.

Finding parking was not an issue. The arena has indoor parking, and there’s a shopping centre next to the arena where you can park for free.


For those who want to eat before the game, there are multiple restaurants in the shopping centre next to the arena, including Subway’s, Bellepro’s, Tim Hortons, Amir and Thai Express.

The arena food is a bit costly, but still cheaper than at a Canadiens game at the Bell Centre. A slice of pizza at Place Bell is $4.25, and a hot dog is $3.50.

If you’re thirsty at a Rocket game, it’s going to cost you $5.75 for a 355-ml beer, and $3 for a bottle of water. Both those prices are cheap compared to $12 draft beers and $7.50 water at the Bell Centre.

For just $20, we got to sit four rows behind the net at Place Bell for the Laval Rocket’s game. Photo by Nicholas Di Giovanni.


For $20, tax included, we got tickets four rows behind the net. The regular cost for those tickets is $32 before taxes and fees. We really couldn’t have asked for better tickets for their price and location. Place Bell is a small arena with 10,000 seats, so there probably isn’t a bad seat in the house.

The seats are also really comfortable and leave a lot of leg room. Not even the Bell Centre compares to the level of comfort I had at Place Bell.


Honestly, I loved it. It’s different than going to a Canadiens game because the arena has more of a family-friendly atmosphere. There were quite a few students, but more importantly, a lot of families were there, even for a Wednesday night. Not far from where we were sitting, there were two kids dancing and cheering for most of the game, so it made for a fun atmosphere.

However, I found the arena music was too loud. During breaks in the game when they would play music, it would get so loud I had trouble talking to my friends who were sitting right beside me.

Overall thoughts

I would definitely recommend Concordia students go watch the Laval Rocket play. It’s fun and affordable. I spent just over $40 for the whole night—I ate before and during the game—so if you control your hunger, you can have a fun night out with friends for $20.

The Rocket will host 10 more Student Wednesday promotions, including the next one on Nov. 1.

Main photo by Nicholas Di Giovanni.


Women’s bid for perfection ends

Concordia 55 Laval 51
McGill 57 Concordia 52

The dream of a perfect season came to its disappointing end for the Stingers women’s basketball team over the weekend.
Coming off a hard fought, four point road win on Friday night against Laval, the Stingers just didn’t have enough left in the tank to get past a streaking McGill Martlets team the very next day in their own gym.
On Friday, Concordia was in a dog fight with Laval. The Stingers took a seven point lead into halftime but imploded in the third quarter. Laval started the quarter on a 12-4 run and outscored Concordia 24-13 in the quarter, turning the Stingers halftime lead into a four point deficit.
With a perfect season still in tact, Concordia clamped down on defence and held Laval to just five points in the fourth quarter en route to the victory. Kaylah Barrett led the Stingers with 21 points.
On Saturday the story was similar. Concordia found itself trailing by five going into the fourth quarter, except this time the clock struck midnight on the perfect season as the Stingers just couldn’t muster enough energy for the comeback.
Barrett scored a season low 11 points and shot just two-for-11 from the field, though she did manage to get to the free throw line nine times, making six shots.
McGill was led by its bench, primarily Helene Bibeau who led the Martlets in scoring with 16 points.
McGill is now surging, having won three games in a row and at 5-3, and is now only two points behind Concordia for first place in the RSEQ, though Concordia does still have a game in hand.


Concordia men win convincingly in home opener

Despite a few brief mental lapses in the game’s second and third quarters, the Concordia Stingers outscored the visiting Laval Rouge et Or by 18 points during the final 10 minutes, earning themselves an 88-72 victory.

Concordia came out strong in the first quarter, playing typical Stingers basketball. They quickly set the tone of game, playing aggressively on both sides of the ball and getting out in transition, all of which translated into an early 22-17 lead.

However, in what has been the case of late, Concordia’s intensity and focus seemingly all but disappeared in the game’s middle quarters, allowing the visiting Rouge et Or to claw their way back into the game, even grabbing hold of the lead late in the third quarter.

“It’s an issue that we’ve always been talking about in practice,” said Stingers forward Evens Laroche. He was echoing his words from last week talking about how the Stingers want to win big to send a message.

“We have to take our intensity to the next level and that’s what we’re working on. We always start strong and we finish well, but we need to be a killer team that beats teams by 40 points and just doesn’t stop,” he said. “We’re working on it. It’s a long process though.”

Havoc ensues as Kyle Desmarais is tripped up over a loose ball. Photo by Navneet Pall

Kyle Desmarais, who scored 16 points in the night, also chimed in on the issue. “We have to work on playing a full 40 minutes and we’ll just destroy teams,” said the Stingers guard. “We’re trying to see what we can do to get the guys to perform for a full 40 minutes. If we can do that, we’ll be dangerous nationally.”

Entering the fourth quarter down by a bucket, the Stingers seemed to regain their composure and overall sense of urgency as the lackadaisical attitude that characterized their play over the game’s previous 20 minutes was nowhere to be found.

They proceeded to crush the visitors, almost completely shutting them down defensively as they outscored Laval 28-10, turning a two-point deficit into a 16-point victory.

The Stingers were led in no small part by Laroche who had a spectacular game, contributing all over the board. The fourth-year forward registered 16 points on 5-of-9 shooting, to go along with six rebounds, six assists, seven steals and two blocks.

“Evens was all over the court today,” said Stingers head coach John Dore. “He rebounded and he blocked shots. I didn’t even realize he had 16 points. It was the other things that he did that stood out. The intangibles he provided, such as getting in the passing lanes and coming across the court and getting his hands on loose balls was big for us. All those little things that he did for us helped us be successful tonight.”

With the victory, the Stingers are now 2-0 in the season and will play host to the Bishop’s University Gaiters this Friday, Nov. 25 at 8 p.m. 

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