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March 3, 2018 | Hockey (W)

The Stinger bench celebrates a goal in Saturday's game.

Women’s hockey forces Game 3 in Quebec finals

It’s all going to come down to one final game for the Concordia Stingers women’s hockey team.

The Stingers defeated the Montréal Carabins 3-2 on Saturday afternoon tying the best-of-three semifinal series at one game apiece and forcing the teams to go to a third game to decide the RSEQ championship.

The teams meet again on Sunday afternoon at CEPSUM arena, 2100 Edouard Montpetit Blvd, Montreal. The puck drops at 3 p.m.

Concordia never trailed in Saturday’s game and a strong start was the key to that. Stinger forward Stephanie Lalancette opened the scoring at 16:44 of the first period. Defender Brigitte Laganière stretched the lead to 2-0 at 2:04 of the second frame.

Annie Germain put Montreal on the scoreboard for the first time at 6:08 of the second period, but the Stingers answered quickly on a goal from captain Marie-Joëlle Allard and they went into the second intermission with a 3-1 lead.

Five minutes into the third period Jessica Cormier scored the Carabins’ second goal. Despite pulling their goalie and an intense attack, Montréal couldn’t score.

Stinger goaltender Katherine Purchase turned away 19 of 21 shots for the victory.

In five regular season meetings versus Montréal, the Stingers won three games. All five of the contests went to overtime or a shootout.

In the playoffs, there were two more one-goal games. Montreal won the opening game 3-2 in OT and Concordia picked up the 3-2 victory in regulation time on Saturday.

Oddly, in five of the teams’ seven meetings this season, the final score has been 3-2.