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March 2, 2019 | Basketball (M)

Stingers take RSEQ title with win 73-69 over UQAM

The Concordia Stingers men's basketball team defeated the UQAM Citadins 73-69 before a capacity crowd at Concordia Gym to earn the RSEQ championship and advance to the U SPORTS Men's Basketball Final 8 Tournament in Halifax March 8-10.

The Stingers led the game right from the start and never lost the lead.

“I’m really proud of our guys,” said head coach Rastko Popovic. “I thought we executed our game plan well at both ends of the court. We defended well, we rebounded the ball very well and our top players stepped up when it was time to make big plays."

League MVP and Concordia captain Ricardo Monge led the Stingers with 19 points, eight assists and seven rebounds. Olivier Simon was a big presence with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Sami Ghandour was right behind them with 17 points and nine rebounds.

The Stingers led 27-21 at halftime and were up 48-43 after three quarters.

The last time the Stingers laid claim to the RSEQ title was in 2012. That year Concordia dominated UQAM in the final, winning 77-47.

This is the 21st conference title for the Stingers since Concordia University was formed 45 years ago. It is the first for Popovic who took over as head coach of the program in 2015.

Now the team eagerly awaits the seedings for the national championship tournament. The announcement will be made Sunday night.