After a two point squeaker over the improving Laval on the final night of the first half of the season, #1 (in my rankings) McGill Redmen (12-1, 4-0) again face the Rouge et Or, who confidently swept Concordia Stingers in a home-and-home series last weekend to move to even at 3-3 in the RSEQ. Laval’s improved play has been consistent with materially better production from 6’6″ Alexandre Leclerc, the prodigious sophomore wing who scorched the Stingers for 27 points in the second game including 5 threes. With burly 5’10” point guard Karl Demers-Belanger and 6’5″ Thibaud Dezutter, Laval has 3 slashers who can put pressure on defenders and who attack the rim aggressively. When Rouge et Or make shots, they are a dangerous team as the uOttawa Gee-Gees found out just after Christmas. The Redmen come off a comfortable win at Queen’s in which they led by as many as 15 in the second half despite getting a 6 for 31 effort from the floor from their guard tandem of 6’2″ Dele Ogundokun and 6’1″ Jenning Leung. Tonight’s game is in Montreal at Love Competition Hall followed by Saturday’s rematch in Ste. Foy.
In the other RSEQ game, UQAM and Concordia face off – tonight on Citadins home floor and Saturday in the Bee Hive (both games in Montreal). I have opined frequently about UQAM guard Kewyn Blain, calling him the best player in the Q and he will be tested by Concordia’s stable of athletic guards. However, wing Greishe Clerjuste comes off a career-high 30 point game at Bishop’s last weekend as the Citadins swept the Gaiters – Blain apparently has another key, consistent offensive contributor to play off of. Stingers are reeling, having lost their past 4 conference games in a row after a 2-0 start and 6 0f their last 7 games overall. Bishop’s is idle this weekend.
In the AUS, St. FX hosts Cape Breton in a game delayed 24 hours by weather. Game time in Antigonish tonight is 7 PM ET/8 PM AT and is the first of a home-and-home this weekend between two of the more competitive rivals in the country.