Sylla stars as Martlets handle business on the road


MONTREAL – Mariam Sylla posted a “double-double” with a game-high 20 points and 13 rebounds as the No.4-ranked McGill women’s basketball team earned a hard fought 60-48 road win over UQAM at the Centre Sportif, Thursday.

The Martlets, who remain perfect in the RSEQ (2-0), are now 6-1 versus CIS opponents on the young season. 

UQAM, who had an impressive 63-59 road win against Laval in their opener last week, came out strong virtually matching McGill step for step in the opening quarter finding themselves only down 14-13. The Martlets however, took control in the second stanza and increased their lead to 29-20 at halftime. They carried this momentum into the second half outscoring the Citadins 19-11 in the third frame to take a 48-31 margin into the final quarter. The game got as close as ten before McGill ultimately put it on ice. 

Sylla, a 6-foot-1 centre from Guinea, shot an impressive 8-for-11 from the floor and 4-for-4 from the foul-line. The pharmacology junior also snagged five of her 13 rebounds on the offensive glass. 

Jennifer Silver, a sophomore forward, was the only other Martlet reach double-digit figures in scoring. The Montreal, Que., native came off the bench to add 14 points and four rebounds. She also had a hot night shooting going 7-for-8 from the field.

McGill’s other big Alex Kiss-Rusk grabbed 6 rebounds and added eight points off a 4-for-9 shooting performance.

Queteline Celestin lead the way for the Citadins with 15 points. Jessica Lubin also reached double figures, scoring 10.

The Martlets had a massive advantage on the glass out rebounding UQAM 52-28, 18 of which were offensive. This helped to make up for an uncharacteristic 24 turnovers by the reigning RSEQ champs. The Citadins did a slightly better job protecting ball coughing it up only 17 times.  

McGill shot 43.9 per cent from the field (25/57) but struggled from both downtown and line going 1-for-14 (7.1%) and 9 of 14 (64.3%) respectively. UQAM connected on 31.7 per cent from the floor (19/60) and 2-for-7 from beyond the arc.

The Martlets now have a nine-day break before hosting cross-town rival Concordia (1-1) on Nov. 22 at 6.p.m. UQAM will get a two week break before facing the same Stinger squad on the road Nov. 27.