Stingers 6, Ravens 0: Stingers’ Scoring Snowballs

Despite Staunch Goaltending, the Ravens Imploded in the Third

Photo Aaron Bauman

The Concordia Stingers’ women’s hockey team tallied 57 shots in a decisive 6-0 win over the Carleton University Ravens on Jan. 29.

With a solid lead atop of the Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec standings, the Stingers took to the ice with the same goal-generating intellect they’ve toted all year. They circulated the puck well, yet, lacking energy, the Stingers’ playmaking abilities were subdued due to stellar goaltending by Ravens’ backstop Frederike Lavoie-Leroux. Lavoie-Leroux sniffed out any cross-crease or trailing man the Stingers had, positioning herself accordingly to make the save. She stopped all 16 of the opening frame shots.

The Ravens displayed a physical presence near the end of the first period. With aggressive tenacity and an unsuccessful scoring situation, Stingers’ head coach Julie Chu set the tone during the intermission between periods. 

“It was about staying disciplined,” said Chu post-game. With three called penalties between both teams in the first period, Chu was well aware of the special teams' possibilities that could arise. “It was about staying focused and not becoming frustrated by the fact that we weren’t scoring… and to just enjoy the fact that we were playing some really good hockey.”

About halfway into the second frame, the Stingers finally broke the scoreless tie. At the seven-minute mark, Stingers’ forward Émilie Lavoie corralled a stray puck as a scrum broke out inside Lavoie-Leroux’s crease. Lavoie, knowing she was at a tough angle behind the goal line, shovelled the puck in front of the net. The puck deflected off of Lavoie-Leroux and into the mesh. 

Not two minutes later, Stingers’ forward Chloé Gendreau elected to take the puck out of her own end while on the penalty kill. Gendreau weaved through Ravens defenders and laced a cross-crease pass to a streaking Lavoie, who tapped in the backhand beauty past the out-stretched glove of Lavoie-Leroux. In an instant, the Stingers amassed a two-goal lead and held the 2-0 score until the end of the second stanza.

Lavoie addressed the offensive feats when she said, “We changed up our lines throughout the season, but we found a chemistry between me and Chloé [Gendreau]. We just build on it at every practice and in every game.”

The Ravens knew they had their work cut out for them with 20 minutes left on the scoreboard. Up to this point, Carelton had mustered 17 shots to Concordia’s 37, easily steered away by the Stingers’ goaltender Madison Oakes, who returned between the pipes for their first game of the year. 

Having missed time due to injury, Oakes spoke on their opportunity to start post-game: “It’s just awesome being behind my teammates again,” they said. Oakes credited their goaltending partners Jordyn Verbeek and Alice Philbert for “working me really hard in practice, pushing me and motivating me to get better.”

In the terminal period, the Stingers picked up where they left off, controlling the clock with lengthy puck possession spurts and utilizing their speed against a physically prominent Ravens defence.

Lavoie-Leroux’s performance was all for naught. With only two goals allowed initially, the Stingers’ high-volume shooting proved to be the crack in the dam. The floodgates opened with another Gendreau-Lavoie-line cross-crease goal. Gendreau was on the receiving end this time, and the mark was the first of a four-goal barrage in the third period. The next three goals came from forward Brodi Levitt, defenceman Alexandre-Anne Boyer and forward Rosalie Bégin-Cyr, transpiring within the last five minutes of regulation time. 

Now that the game was out of hand, the remaining time clicked down as the full-time buzzer signalled a 16th win for the Stingers on the year. 

“When you play three games in a short span of time—which is unusual—we have to stay focused on what we have to do and execute,” said coach Chu on her team’s performance. “We stayed disciplined and did a really great job.”

The Stingers will now rest and recover for the final leg of the regular season to come. The team’s next game will come against the McGill University Martlets on Thursday, Feb. 2, with puck-drop scheduled for 7 p.m.