On Nov. 12, the McGill Martlets (1-4) faced-off against the Concordia Stingers (4-2). Coming into the game, the Martlets, ranked seventh nationally, had lost four consecutive games while the Stingers, ranked fourth, were riding a four-game winning streak. It was certainly not the start to the season that the Martlets had wished for, but on Sunday they showed what they were made of, defeating their cross-town rivals 4-3.
“We focused on the little things,” Second-year forward Jade Downie-Landry said. “We did what we had to do.”
It was Downie-Landry who gave the Martlets the lead just over a minute into the game when she capitalized on a mistake by Concordia’s goalie. The Stingers fought back, creating scoring opportunity after scoring opportunity, but thanks to some huge defensive plays, McGill held Concordia scoreless in the first period. Meanwhile, the Martlets set up a few chances of their own and with a goal from second-year forward Léa Dumais, they headed into the first intermission with a 2-0 lead.
After the break, it took the Stingers only six minutes to tie the game back up, and they continued to dominate throughout the second period. With five minutes remaining in the frame, the Stingers overpowered an exhausted McGill defence and netted another goal to take a 3-2 lead. The Martlets weren’t done fighting, however. Third-year forward Olivia Atkinson capitalized on a power play right before the end of the period, creating a much-needed change of momentum.
The third period was a much more even battle than the second. The Martlets found themselves in the penalty box often but went eight-for-eight in successful penalty kills for the game, which frustrated Concordia’s offence.
“It’s a funny thing about momentum,” Martlet Head Coach Peter Smith said. “A power play can certainly build momentum but it can destroy momentum if you don’t score.”
Downie-Landry assisted a goal from rookie forward Christiana Colizza late in the third period to give the Martlets the lead again. They took a penalty with less than two minutes on the clock but managed to hold off the six-on-four to clinch their first victory of the season.
This was a big win for the Martlets, who are currently sitting in last place in the RSEQ conference. The team aims to use the positive result as a turning point for the rest of the season.
“I think this win is going to serve as a bit of an inspiration to show what our team is capable of. Nothing feels better than a win and we just gotta carry the momentum forward,” Martlets captain Alison MacKenzie said.
The Martlets next face the Carleton Ravens (3-2) this Saturday, Nov. 18 at 7 p.m. at McConnell Arena.
Moment of the game
In a quick break out of McGill’s defensive zone, Martlet forward Jade Downie-Landry connected with Christiana Colizza, who skated past a Stingers defender and found the back of the net from 10 yards out to give McGill a late lead in the third period.
“I don’t have to motivate them. They motivate themselves.” – Head Coach Peter Smith
Despite being outscored 3-1 in the second period, the Martlets got 14 shots off while the Stingers took just nine.