Deep, aggressive Stingers pull away to defeat Varsity Blues

Concordia (5-3) 79, Toronto (2-1) 63… Stingers pulled away early in the third quarter to lead by as many as 18, getting strong performances from several players and shot 10 for 18 from 3 in a comfortable win against the Varsity Blues.  Concordia’s freshman lefty shooting guard Nicky Noble led all scorers with 19 points including 5-6 3’s and his back-to-back 3’s including a sick step-back from the right baseline put the game seemingly out of reach early in the third.  The Blues had one run left, getting the game down to six with about 5 minutes remaining but 6’5″ Schneiders Suffrard, who made just 2 of his first 10 shots, put the game away singlehandidly with a 7-0 run that included a three, a sweet baseline take and a pair of free throws after being fouled in transition.  The lanky sophomore forward oozes with physical ability and should be even more difficult to guard when he figures out that his strength is getting to the rim instead of settling for perimeter shots.  Suffrard took the game over when it counted late, finishing with 16 points and 9 boards.  Burly 6’5″ forward Michael Fosu always seems to have his arms wrapped up with defenders and offensive players inside and uses his core strength to assert himself inside – one would think, given he is probably one of the strongest players in the country, he wouldn’t find  himself on the ground so much but I am knit picking.  He is one of the more underrated inside players in the country who tonight had 10 points in 22 minutes.  Concordia played without 6’4″ Ken Beaulieu who did not make the trip to Ottawa after not playing in the second half of last week’s home loss to McMaster.  6’5″ T.J. Umar missed the Mac game and played only 9 minutes tonight as coach Rastko Popovic gives time to emerging 6’5″ freshman forward Olivier Simon, who promises to have a tremendous career and works in 6’8″ D1 transfer Malcolm Henderson, a big, strong space-eating post player who should gain more time as the season progresses.  Stingers are an aggressive team inside and defending on the perimeter and play a city-tempo, in-your-face style that suits their depth and talents.  Concordia has numerous weapons and should be a contender in Quebec this season.  The Blues generally struggled getting much off the dribble and while 6’5″ Devin Johnson had 16 points he shot only 6 for 15 and missed several looks during Concordia’s third quarter run when the Stingers stretched it out.  While 6’3″ Reilly Reid did not have his best game tonight, the D2 transfer has a fine array of offensive skills and the body of a wing who can post up and work through physicality in the paint.  Toronto faces McGill tomorrow night while the Stingers face uOttawa Gee-Gees.


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