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Spartans News

SG Basketball: In Uncharted Territory

By Erik Van Dyke
So, this is Stanstead College’s history with the RSEQ. We first joined the Quebec-wide league seven years ago in 2016 after our regular ETIAC basketball league folded due to teams defecting to the RSEQ. That inaugural year we ended up with 7 wins vs 5 losses.
 The next year we had one over-age player on the team, so we officially defaulted every game despite (really) going 8-2. 2018-19 saw us finish 11-3 and participate in the playoffs for the first time (we usually skip them, as they almost always fall in the middle of our March break). That is, we came back after the March break and played a semi and a consolation final, losing them both. The next year we went 3-11. COVID killed the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons. Which leads us to this season, and the three RSEQ league games in four days stretch we just completed.…
Last Wednesday was our Senior Night, and in a team-wide dominating performance we smothered Triolet 44-22. The girls set the tone right away with a 10-2 lockdown first quarter, and they never looked back. Deflections, offensive rebounds, steals, in-your-face defence, fast breaks – your Spartans had all pistons firing in a fun-filled exhibition that saw 9 out of 10 players score and 10 out of 10 players loving every minute of it. Players Of The Game go to Gloria Riddell for her disruptive all-court defence and Hayley Wolfe for her 9 points and 9 rebounds including 5/6 from the free throw line.
On Friday, Triolet did all they could to exact their revenge, as we travelled to their gym for their own Senior Night. And we knew right away we were in for a tough one. Not only was the gym packed with Harfangs supporters, but we had lost Sara Paquette to an ankle injury last game, leaving us shorthanded at guard. So yeah, tough. Actually, “tough” doesn’t do this game justice, as it was the most game adversity we had faced this season. The gym was insane, a full cheerleader squad was riling up the crowd, and the home fans were chanting and singing and erupting after every good Triolet play. It was like our little band of red jerseys was on a small island surrounded by a mob that wanted nothing else but to celebrate our failures and mistakes. And celebrate them LOUDLY. Did it get to us? Yes, it got to us. We were rattled.
But we did NOT fold. We persevered. Camryn Moore was the emotional leader who thrives on this kind of competitive challenge. “What’s better than winning at Senior Night? Winning at TWO Senior Nights!” Henni Kraushaar (10 points 9 rebounds) carried us early. Melissa Kakayuk carried us late (6 huge points in the fourth quarter). And when the chips were down, after watching Triolet bank in not one but two 3-pointers to take the lead, with the fans and the announcer on the microphone going absolutely bonkers, down 31-30 with two minutes left, the girls shut it all out, focused on themselves, put Triolet on lockdown and allowed only 1 point the rest of the way. A 6-1 run, under intense pressure, to ice the game 36-32. SO IMPRESSIVE! Despite the turnovers, the sloppy play, an early ankle tweak, and the most hostile environment of the year, the players found a way. With grit and spit, they found a way.
Finally, the very next day at noon, we hosted Marie-Rivier. And, boy, were we pooped. But strong defensive performances from Henni (10 rebounds, 5 blocks) and Hayley (8 rebounds 3 steals) – the two of them were fantastic in help rotation all game long – anchored us defensively, Bernie von Campenhausen (11 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 steals) was an all-around athletic force of nature out there, and Player Of The Game Melissa (19 points, 15 rebounds, 4 stls, 5 assists) was simply on another level, leading the fast break, hitting floaters, crashing the boards, and imposing her will. Final score 55-35. Three wins in 4 days. Mission accomplished.
Back to the RSEQ D3 league…
Winning all three of these games puts us at 10-1 on the year. Our only loss came to Salesien, who is currently 9-2. We play Salesien this upcoming Tuesday. If we beat Salesien, we will win the RSEQ league banner for the first time ever. If we lose, then both teams are 10-2, but Salesien will win the league because the tiebreaker will be head-to-head record, and they will have beaten us 2 out of 3 games. This looonnnnng regular season has come down to one game. This Tuesday. On the road. Short-handed. For all the marbles. Against the only RSEQ team we’ve lost to this year.
Can we dig deep, one more time?

- Coaches VD & W
The year so far
Overall Record27 wins 9 losses
RSEQ League Play:  10 wins  1 loss
Points for per game41.8     Points allowed per game27.3
Mtl Independent Schools Tournament Silver Medalists
Stanstead Invitational Tournament CHAMPIONS
Bailly Tournament CHAMPIONS