60 minutes of dominance: Martlets shutout Ottawa

Sam Reynolds


It was business as usual for the McGill Martlets in hockey action this past Friday, as they rolled over the Gee-Gees 6-0 for their 33rd consecutive victory over the Ottawa natives. McGill was propelled by strong performances from forwards Melodie Daoust, who garnered a hat-trick and an assist, and Katia Clement-Heydra, also with four points, adding a goal and three assists of her own.

Head Coach Peter Smith was pleased with his team’s effort on Friday. “I though we had a great start. Coaches always talk about playing for 60 minutes, and I thought we had a solid 60 minutes,” Smith said. 

Right from the onset the Martlets showed their dominance and tenacity, opening the scoring just two minutes into the first after a brilliant display of give and go passing between Leslie Oles and scorer Ann-Sophie Bettez. Following these opening fireworks, McGill experienced its only goal-scoring dry spell of the contest, rounding out the first period with just the single goal, despite peppering Ottawa net-minder Stephanie Mercier with 12 further shots.

The second period began in similar fashion as the first with the Martlets’ second line, partially consisting of Daoust and Clement-Heydra, begnning to catch fire, finding the back of the net just 58 seconds into the frame off the stick of Daoust. The duo continued their exceptional play into the middle of the second, where Daoust again found the back of the net following a brilliant display of stick handling, and into the third, as they collaborated on McGill’s final two of three goals to seal the deal for the Martlets. 

Smith praised the chemistry and contributions of Daoust and Clement-Heydra. “That line, along with Kim Ton-That has really developed some chemistry over the last half-dozen games. They create a lot of scoring chances and they’re doing a really good job moving the puck,” Smith said. “They’re good individual players, but they’ve learned to play within the structure of the plan we have in mind, so I think it’s really paid dividends for them.” 

Ultimately, it was McGill’s discipline and superb technical skill that was the difference, as the Gee-Gees often found themselves falling behind the feverish pace put forth by the skilled Martlets. In the end, Ottawa managed only 11 shots to McGill’s 39 and committed five penalties to McGill’s zero, which helped pave the way for the Martlets’ victory.

McGill won their second contest of the weekend on Saturday, 6-1, on the road against Carleton. With only one more match before the RSEQ semi-finals, which are set to begin Feb. 22, the Martlets find themselves coasting in with the top seed and their eyes set on yet another title. 

Smith continues to stress the need to continue improving and to remain focused, preventing any complacency from arising in the dressing room. 

“We always are working on things. Every practice there is a focus of things we want to get better at. But overall, it’s been a good year in terms of development and preparation,” Smith said. “I feel real good about where the team is heading into the playoffs, but we’ll continue working hard.”

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