On Jan. 27, the McGill Martlet (8-2) basketball team turned the tables to defeat the Bishop’s University Gaiters (5-6) 66-57 in the second of two back-to-back games—the first of which they lost 40-52.
The Martlets started off strong in the first quarter, finishing the period ahead 16-12. They were unable to maintain their lead, however, falling behind by two after the second quarter. Bishop’s won the third quarter as well, entering the final period holding a 51-46 lead.
In the fourth quarter, the Martlets showed defensive grit and discipline, shutting the Gaiters out for nearly seven minutes while putting up 11 straight points. Martlet Head Coach Ryan Thorne spoke to the intensity of the game and commended his team’s bounce back from the night before.
“This game was a battle,” Thorne said. “It tested us. Every game is a grind [….] We shot better today and made some better decisions.”
With one three-pointer from third-year guard Gladys Hakizimana and two from first-year guard Charlotte Clayton in the fourth quarter, McGill kept control of the game until the final whistle. Clayton, who came off the bench in the first, made four three-pointers in the entire game.
“Charlotte’s game was amazing,” Thorne said. “She was more confident [….] She has the ability to shoot the ball. She can attack and defend, so she is a triple threat.
Clayton leads her rookie class in minutes this season, including 18 in Friday’s loss and 26 in Saturday’s win. She credited her team’s comeback victory to their emphasis on teamwork.
“We weren’t really working together yesterday,” Clayton said. “We weren’t reading things properly either. Today we focused more on ourselves and working together.”
Fourth-year Marie-Love Michel, who slotted in as a starting wing, put up 12 points alongside a solid defensive performance. After Friday night’s loss, she amped up her physicality in the rematch to help the Martlets secure a win.
“We were more aggressive,” Michel said. “All the starting fives, we started right from the beginning. Last night we lost to the same team, and I wasn’t as aggressive, so today I tried to get steals and be more aggressive.”
The RSEQ-leading Martlets have six games remaining in the regular season, which include three marquee matchups against the second-place Université Laval Rouge et Or. The Martlets head to Quebec City on Feb. 1 before returning to host Laval on Feb. 3 in Love Competition Hall.
Moment of the game
After forcing turnovers on two consecutive Bishop’s inbound attempts, fourth-year wing Marie-Love Michel scored two layups and earned an additional point from the freethrow line—good for five points in 10 seconds at the end of the first quarter.
“We want to improve our mindset for the game. We think we are the best team in the country but we have to show it every game and every time. And we are working on that and working on going to playoffs and finishing first in the league.” – Martlet fourth-year wing Marie-Love Michel
McGill only shot 23 for 61 from the field (37.7 per cent), but managed eight for 19 (42 per cent) shots from the three-point line.