By McGill Reporter Staff
McGill’s women’s and men’s hockey teams, respectively ranked No.1 and No. 2 in the country, have both qualified to play in the Canadian Intercollegiate Sports national championships.
The Redmen earned an automatic berth in the CIS national championship tournament, the Cavendish University Cup, with their 6-1 defeat of the UQTR Patriotes in the decisive game of the OUA Eastern Conference championship at McConnell Arena, Sunday. It will be their fifth trip to the Nationals in six years. Before that, however, the Redmen have a little business to take care of. They will head to London, Ont., to take on the Western Ontario Mustangs next Saturday in the 100th edition of the Queen’s Cup league championship.
The Redmen, who had lost by an identical 6-1 score in Game 2 of the series on Friday, had opened the best-of-three affair with a 5-3 win at home last Wednesday. They completed their home schedule with an unprecedented and unblemished 21-0 record overall.
Martlets favoured to win it all
The hockey Martlets captured their sixth consecutive Ed Enos trophy as champions of the Quebec university women’s hockey league with an 8-1 victory over the Montreal Carabins last Friday. Ann-Sophie Bettez and Katia Clement-Heydra each scored and added three assists and Caroline Hill, a fifth-year senior from Dorval, Que., and veteran Jordanna Peroff of Keswick, Ont., added two goals apiece for the Martlets, who won for the 105th consecutive time against a QUHL opponent.
The Martlets have been established pre-tournament favourites for the fifth straight year as they vie to return to the top of the CIS women’s hockey world this coming weekend in Waterloo, Ont. The six-team championship, hosted for the first time by Wilfrid Laurier University, gets under way Thursday and culminates Sunday at 7:30 p.m. with the gold medal final.
The competition kicks off Thursday at 4 p.m. with McGill taking on Alberta in a rematch of the 2010 national final. The Pool B opener follows at 7:30 p.m. with StFX facing Laurier.
Queen’s and Manitoba take the ice Friday against the losers of the opening-day matchups.
The Martlets went into last year’s gold medal game riding a record 86-game overall winning streak against CIS opponents but were shut down by the Pandas, who prevailed 2-0 to capture their seventh all-time championship banner, the most by any team since women’s hockey was added to the CIS program in 1997-98.
The remarkable McGill win streak included back-to-back CIS titles in 2008 and 2009, the only ones in school history.
The Martlets look as strong as ever this season as they go into the championship tournament with an unblemished 30-0 mark versus CIS rivals. Goaltender Charline Labonté and head coach Peter Smith are back with the team after a one-year absence – during which they helped Canada claim gold at the Vancouver Olympics – and the perennial powerhouse has also added, among others, two-time Olympic champion Gillian Ferrari who joins former national team member Cathy Chartrand on the blueline.
For more information on McGill’s hockey teams, go to: www.mcgill.ca/athletics.
For more on the 2011 CIS Women’s Hockey Championship, visit: http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/wice.
To follow the Redmen in the 2011 Cavendish University Cup, go to: http://english.cis-sic.ca/championships/mice.