Stingers Narrowly Seal Victory
They got a little banged up, but Concordia’s men’s basketball team finally struck back against the UQAM Citadins in a 94-87 decision Friday at the Loyola Gym.
“I thought we had a good fourth quarter, but played inconsistently in the first three quarters,” said Stingers assistant coach David Bloom.
The home team gained momentum with a shot from downtown by guard Morgan Tajfel but had trouble holding off the Citadins for a prolonged period.
Inconsistency throughout the first quarter proved frustrating when Stingers guard Kyle Desmarais put his team in front 15-14 with a three pointer only to open up in the second quarter trailing.
“In the first half we were kind of up and down, but we really grinded out in the end,” said Stingers forward James Clark.
This style of play continued in the second. After spending most of the quarter trailing, the Stingers sank a few free throw balls along with guard Decee Krah’s long shot to be leading 43-39. Sure enough, the opposition closed off the half with three quick baskets to go up 45-43.
Going into the third it seemed like the Stingers were going to lose more than just the game. Stinger guard Tajfel suffered a broken nose late in the quarter. However, he returned in the fourth to play the rest of the game.
“The fourth quarter came on and we’ve had a sense of urgency, and then everyone started hitting the glass,” Desmarais said.
The Stingers spent most of the closing quarter playing catch up, but within the final two minutes they pulled ahead of the Citadins, as they sank more of their free throws and added a couple of insurance baskets for the win.The way the game ended didn’t sit well with UQAM head coach Olga Hyrcak.
“We didn’t do the job in the last couple of minutes,” she said.
As disappointed as she was, she was quick to praise Desmarais and Krah for their hard work. “The guys that stepped up for Concordia were Decee and Kyle and they’re [great] players,” she said.
The Stingers also felt they have their work cut out for them going into the playoffs particularly when it comes to sustaining the pressure.
“…and then everyone started hitting the glass.”
“If we can perform in the first three quarters like we did in the fourth, we can blow teams out in this league,” Desmarais said.
While they didn’t see this game as the slam dunk they were looking for, they do see this as a confidence booster for when the Laval Rouge et Or visit next Friday.
“To come from behind against a strong UQAM team, it definitely boosts our confidence, especially since we got good performances from so many guys,” said Desmarias. “ I think we’re going to be riding into that game on a high note, especially in our home gym.”
Tip off against the Laval Rouge et Or is 6 p.m. on Feb 8th. On Saturday at 7 p.m. it’s their turn to visit the Citadins.
This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 22, published February 8, 2011.