Concordia's Thursday Report

Vol. 28, No.4

October 23, 2003


Stingers roundup

by John Austen

A first-place finish is still a possibility for the Concordia Stingers football team. After beating up on the McGill Redmen 26-9 in the 17th annual Shrine Bowl at Molson Stadium last Saturday, the Stingers find themselves in a three-way tie for first place with Laval and Montreal. All three teams have identical 6-1 records heading into the last week of the season.

The Stingers host the winless first-year Sherbrooke franchise in what should be a gimme on Saturday (1 p.m. Concordia Stadium), while Montreal travels to Laval on Sunday.

Assuming the Stingers take care of Sherbrooke, Montreal would have to beat Laval for Concordia to be awarded first place.

The Stingers were forced to play the Redmen last weekend without their star running back Jean-Michel Paquette, who suffered a concussion after his team’s 26-15 win over Montreal earlier this month. That appeared to leave a huge hole in the offence early in the game as the Stingers could only match the Redmen’s normally anemic offence.

Stinger quarterback Jon Bond eventually found his rhythm, however, as he threw touchdown strikes to Carlton O’Brien (13 yards) and Brad Remus (60 yards). Bond ended up with 17 completions on 29 attempts for 273 yards on the day.

The Redmen, who haven’t passed for a touchdown all season, could only put three field goals up on the board.

Middle-lineback Mickey Donovan led the Stinger defence with 11 tackles. He was awarded the Shrine Bowl MVP award for his efforts. Defensive-end Troy Cunningham won the Ted Elsby Trophy as the game’s outstanding lineman.

Paquette could play Saturday

Jean-Michel Paquette will likely be given clearance to play in this weekend’s home game against Sherbrooke. A mild concussion kept him out of the lineup against McGill last weekend.

“He’s fine,” said Concordia head coach Gerry McGrath. “It was a very mild concussion. He has no headaches. He remembers everything that happened.” Paquette collided with Jean-Anell Solon, a third-year defensive back who was trying to recover a Montreal kickoff. Both players leaped for the ball, and Solon’s knee hit Paquette’s helmet.

After spending the holiday weekend with his family in St. Louis de France, Que. Paquette returned to Montreal and represented the Stingers at a press conference to promote the annual Shrine Bowl. He then joined his teammates and McGill players as they visited with several of the children in the hospital.

Stingers win cage tourney

All-Star forward Patrick Perrotte scored 59 points in two games to help the Concordia Stingers men’s basketball team win the 38th annual Concordia-Nike Tournament held earlier this month.

Perrotte scored 28 points and nine rebounds against the Southern Vermont Mountaineers to help the Stingers to an 83-64 win in the championship game. He also scored 31 points and three rebounds to lead the Stingers to a 92-77 victory over the Toronto Varsity Blues in a preliminary round match.

Perrotte, a 215-pound, 6-foot-1 native of Verdun was named player of the game in both contests and the tournament MVP.

“Patrick had a great weekend with all the scoring,” said Stinger head coach John Dore. “The most important thing is that his understanding of the game is far superior this year to last year. This will enable him to be more consistent in the long run.”

Poirier, Paquette lauded

Melanie Poirier of the women’s soccer team and Jean-Michel Paquette of the football team were named Concordia Stinger athletes of the week for the period ending Oct. 13.

Paquette, a fifth-year running back, carried the ball 19 times for 171 yards and two touchdowns in a 26-15 win over the No. 9-ranked Montreal Carabins. His TD runs of 23 and 54 yards helped turn around a tight contest. Paquette is an administration major at Concordia.

Poirier, a first-year defender with the Stingers was instrumental in helping her team to two recent victories. She scored a goal and was named player of the game in a recent a 3-0 victory over Sherbrooke. She also scored a goal in her team’s 2-1 victory over UQTR.

The men’s soccer team, guided by Czech-Canadian Vladimir Pavlicik, is a reflection of Concordia’s multicultural nature.

“As a coach, it is an absolute joy to have the diversity,” said the soft-spoken Pavlicik. “Each individual brings something different with him, whether it’s Johan and Jonas from Sweden, or Rabi and Kamel from Lebanon, or Nelson from South Africa. It’s the mix that is surely a valuable part of their education.”

The men’s team is by far the most diverse of all the varsity teams at Concordia, men or women, as roughly one-third of the team is from abroad. Many of these students have found the soccer team provides a great basis for their lives at university.

“Coming over from Greece, I didn’t know anyone except for my brother, and I hardly spoke English,” said Theodosios Analitis, one of the two five-year veterans on the team. “When I made the team, I immediately met 25 students, and made some good friends.”

One of those friends is captain Ammar Badawieh, a Jordanian who has enjoyed tremendous success with the team — an All-Canadian, and earned a spot on the all-star team every year he played.

Badawieh remembers the challenges he faced, and now feels he has a responsibility for the team and its younger players, especially the foreign ones.

“Language was my main problem, and there were many others who had that problem, too,” said Badawieh before a Sunday afternoon victory against ETS. “You have to work to communicate with your teammates and learn how to work with them. I also try my best to create a positive atmosphere.”

Second-year engineering student George Oroc does his part to contribute to that atmosphere. The defenceman looks forward to bus rides to talk with the other players. On these trips, he learns about how soccer is played in countries as far away as South Africa. He recalls the recent trip to Quebec City as a memorable one.

“Learning about one another opens your mind,” he said. “You get to know each other’s skills, then you get to work with those skills. Having a multicultural team creates a different dynamic.”

The relationships built during the bus rides, practices and games clearly last beyond the short regular season as the team regularly receives mail and visits from former players living from Mexico to France.

One thing is for sure: the team is comfortable playing at what is known to all of them as “home.” On the road, they are 0-3-1, having been outscored 10-2. They have won all four games on their own pitch at the Loyola Campus, however, outscoring their opponents 10-0.