MONTREAL — The stars seemed so aligned for a McGill volleyball celebration on Friday evening and they jumped into a 2-0 lead in sets but visiting Sherbrooke sombered the mood, roaring back to stun the Martlets 3-2 in a crucial confrontation at Love Competition Hall.
In a back-and-forth marathon that took two hours and 10 minutes to decide a victor, the Vert & Or won by set scores of 16-25,19-25, 25-19, 25-21 and 15-13. A disappointing result for the home team made it somewhat challenging for McGill to put on a happy face in the post-game ceremonies, which celebrated a milestone for Martlets head coach Rachele Beliveau and “Seniors Night”, where four members of the Martlets had just played their final regular season home game, namely alternate captain Marie-Christine Lapointe, Virginie Hebert, Marie-Pier Durivage and injured co-captain Daphnee-Maude Andre-Morin.
“When you lose like this it’s always tough, especially because we showed up today and played a really good game,” said Beliveau, who became the first McGill bench boss, in any sport, to coach in 1,000 games overall and is believed to be one of perhaps three coaches across the country to reach that plateau in CIS women’s volleyball. “We were serving really well and hitting with a lot of variation during the first two sets while Sherbrooke struggled…. But they are not a team that quits and the third set was very intense, right until the end. After that set, we didn’t take the same risks that we were trying earlier, which had been paying off. As the game becomes tighter, you tend not to take high risk plays. You kind of think that if you continue to work hard after a 2-0 lead, things will kind of work themselves out.”
Roxane Hasseni, a six-foot senior centre from France, was one of three Sherbrooke players to reach double figures in scoring with a game-high 16 points on a dozen kills, one service ace and three stuff blocks. Teammates Kariane Dubois and Camille Charest-Gagne added 12 and 10 points, respectively.
Three Martlets also reached double figures, led by freshman Myriam Robitaille of Terrebonne, Que., with 15.5 on the strength of 11 kills, one ace and 3.5 blocks. She also contributed a half-dozen digs and one assist. Teammates Marie-Christine Lapointe (14 pts) of St. Jean sur Richelieu, Que., and Catherine Amyot (13) of Ottawa were the other top scorers, followed by Ashley Norfleet (8.5) of Brossard, Que., and Virginie Hebert (7.5) of St. Donat, Que. Co-captain Yasmeen Dawoodjee, the team’s senior setter from Ottawa, collected 44 assists to go along with 16 digs and an assisted block. Marjolaine Ste-Marie, the second-year libero from St. Lambert, Que., posted a game-high and personal best 32 digs in a losing cause.
McGill held a 49-42 difference in kills, a 7-5 advantage in aces and an impressive 122-99 margin in digs. Sherbrooke had an 11-10 edge in stuff blocks.
The result improved Sherbrooke’s record to 12-6 and left them in the driver’s seat for a playoff berth in the highly-combative four-team RSEQ conference. The Vert & Or are now tied with Laval (12-6), which upset division-leading Montreal (14-4). So, with one game remaining for each team, the only way McGill could earn a playoff berth is to defeat Laval in Quebec City on Saturday (7 pm).
That would create a three-way tie in the standings (which would be a league first), assuming that Montreal wins at Sherbrooke on Sunday. In this scenario, the first RSEQ tie-breaker would be to create a mini-standings, looking only at head-to-head games between the three teams. If this happens, Sherbrooke would finish second with a 5-3 record, McGill would grab the third and final post-season berth at 4-4 and Laval would miss the playoffs at 3-5.
If Montreal does the unlikely and loses to Sherbrooke on Sunday, then the Vert & Or would finish second, while Laval and McGill would be tied for the third and final playoff spot. In this scenario, it would go down to sets won in head-to-head competition. Laval currently leads that series of sets 8-5, so McGill would have to sweep Laval 3-0 to force another tie-breaker. Next on the rules list would be total sets won versus sets lost over the whole season and McGill would have a slight edge.
If you are still with us, the bottom line is that McGill needs to defeat Laval on the road Saturday in a game slated to be webcast and then wait to see where the chips fall on Sunday.
SHORT BOXSCORE Sherbrooke 3, McGill 1 (16-25, 19-25, 25-19, 25-21, 15-13) SHERBROOKE (12-6) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Roxane Hasseni 12-1-5; Camille Charest-G. 8-1-2; Kariane Dubois 8-1-5; Rosalie Coderre 7-0-0; Kim Robitaille 3-1-5; Anne-Julie D'Auteuil 2-1-1; Cather. Deslauriers 1-0-0; Veronique David 1-0-1; Totals 42-5-11.0. (Assists) - Kim Robitaille 22. (Dig leaders) - Joanie Whittom 25; Kariane Dubois 21; Rosalie Coderre 16; Kim Robitaille 10; Camille Charest-G. 9; Cather. Deslauriers 9 McGILL (11-7) (Kills-aces-blocks) - Catherine Amyot 13-0-0; Marie-Christine Lapointe 11-0-4; Myriam Robitaille 11-1-5; Ashley Norfleet 6-2-1; Virginie Hebert 5-0-3; Emilie Matte de Grasse 2-0-0; Marie-Eve Dorion 1-1-0; Yasmeen Dawoodjee 0-3-1; Totals 49-7-10.0. (Assists) - Yasmeen Dawoodjee 44. (Dig leaders) - Marjolaine Ste-Marie 32; Marie-Christine Lapointe 22; Catherine Amyot 21; Ashley Norfleet 17; Yasmeen Dawoodjee 16 Site: Love Competition Hall Date: Feb 6, 2015 Attend: 210 Time: 2:10 Referees: Serge Theriault, Alain Simard
|assement||Bris d’égalité Imprimer|
McGill Sports Info Office