The Stingers Continue Their Cold Streak.
The Edmonton Stingers at one point looked like the clear winners of game six against the Saskatchewan Rattlers. With this being the second confrontation among both teams, the Edmonton Stingers were entering this game with a win as they blew out the Rattlers in their home court. At one point in this game, the Stingers were up in double digits, which was 12 points. However, as the game unfolded, the outcome for the Stingers ended up becoming a loss in addition to the lowest scoring game so far this season. Both teams primary focus was, to play stout defense rather than offence considering the final score being 69-62. With such a low scoring game and the Stingers being up double digits at one point in time, the question is, what disrupted the Stingers flow?
Early on in this game, the Edmonton Stingers were on pace to have their first away game victory. In the first quarter, they were playing well on both ends on the floor. They were communicating well on offence by hitting multiple three’s and committing various and-one plays. This resulted in the Stingers being up by a dozen in the first half of the first quarter. However, the Rattlers had something to prove in this game as they already lost against Edmonton. Their revenge on the Stingers allowed Saskatchewan to go on a colossal offensive run by going 9-0. Their 9-0 scoring streak allowed the Rattlers to be down by only 3 points going into the second quarter.
The second quarter continued to display dominance by the Rattlers due to their impressive 6-0 scoring streak. This quarter showed better offence and defence by the Rattlers; however, the Stingers still managed to make it a close game. As a team, the Rattlers performed well in this quarter; however, Tavrion Dawson was their primary offensive source. His offensive stride to the paint was impossible to guard as he managed to score every-time he had the ball. Other players such as Negus Webster-Chan and Bruce Massey were also significant offensive contributors for the Rattlers as they managed to score multiple times. The Rattlers offensively were much better than their first quarter performance; however, what about their defence? In this quarter, Saskatchewan managed to have 5 steals compared to the Stingers 1. This allowed the Rattlers to gain momentum on both ends of the court. Despite the amount of steals the Rattlers had, Mamadou Gueye of the Stingers managed to keep this game close. Gueye managed to get 5 out of his 7 points in this quarter which were both clutch shots. Defensively, the Stingers struggled as they kept on allowing shot attempts to go in for the Rattlers. The five steals that the Rattlers had hurt the Stingers tremendously in this quarter. As a result, Saskatchewan managed to take the lead at the end of the half with the score being 33-31.
The Third quarter was by far the most competitive quarter in this game. Both teams managed to score the ball while playing good defence. Although both teams scored less than 15 points in this quarter, the tenacity and aggression that was felt in the arena seemed as if it was a playoff game. Out of all the games, the Stingers played this season, this game was by far the most intense more specifically this quarter. The back and forth offensive plays stunned the crowd as neither team could keep a lead. Whether it was Deondre Parks hitting a three for the Stingers or Negus Webster-Chan continuing his clutch performance, this quarter was overall balanced for both teams. The battle that Webster-Chan produced in this quarter was extraordinary as he was the story of this quarter. He was the spark for the Rattlers as he was unable to miss any shot attempt that he made. However, eventually, a story has to come to a close as Webster-Chan, unfortunately, went down with an ankle injury late in the quarter. This resulted in him leaving the game at the end of the third, which was a massive loss for the Rattlers. Although Webster-Chan was the main story, Travis Daniels of the Stingers should not be ignored. Daniels was a significant contributor on both ends of the floor whether it was making tough lay-ups or playing defence like a 7-footer despite only being 6’8. The result of this quarter ended with a tie going into the fourth quarter. The score was 48-48.
This final quarter needed to be different for both teams to ensure a victory. With the previous quarter being so equal, both coaches had to make different plays to disrupt the consistency of their opponents offensive flow. In the first few minutes of the quarter, both teams continued to go back and forth on offence. However, similar to the second quarter, the Rattlers went back to their defensive strive and managed to steal the ball 5 times. This was huge for the Rattlers in this quarter due to, the more they stole the ball, the more the Stingers would lose their composure on offence. The Stingers underestimated the defence of the Rattlers hence their defeat. With the monster defence that the Rattlers played, Alex Campbell was the main offensive outlet for them as he led the charge to a home court victory. Despite the Stingers being up by a dozen points at the beginning of this game, the Rattlers kept believing in themselves to bring their home court a victory. The Stingers were very close to winning their first away game, however, especially towards the end of the game, they had no match against the Rattlers defence. The final score for this game was 69-62 as the Rattlers managed to get their revenge.
This game was so far the most anticlimactic game the Stingers played this season. Edmonton was on pace to win their first highly anticipated away game, however, fell short towards the fourth quarter. This could have been anyone’s game after the first quarter, which is something the Rattlers realized early in this game.
Scoring in this game was equal as both teams shot well from the field. Defensively though, the Rattlers put up a storm as they managed to steal the ball 13 times compared to the Stingers 3. This statistic determined the Rattlers victory. Their aggressiveness defensively is something that the Rattlers should have in every game moving forward. For the Stingers, they need to find more control of the ball as well as to keep their composure no matter what the outcome is. This game was a disappointment for the Stingers as this should have been a win. This defeat hurts Edmonton as they are continuing to fight for an away game victory. Although there is still more than half of the season left, the Stingers need to do something different to break this curse. With that being said, which game do you think the Stingers are going to win on the road?