On Sept. 20, the McGill Redmen (5-0) hosted the Ottawa Gee Gees (1-3) at Forbes Field. Despite the 8:30 p.m. start time and cold breeze, fans cheered the Redmen on to their 17-8 victory.
“[We were looking to] win big,” second-year attackman Patrick Turner said. “We’ve had a couple close games, we wanted to step on these guys’ throats and win big.”
McGill was dominant from the start. Fourth-year attackman Maxime Murdoch opened up scoring a mere two minutes into the game, and Turner quickly followed with three successive goals of his own. The Redmen went on to score two more goals and finished the first quarter up 6-1.
“We definitely wanted to come out harder than we have in the last four games, and I think we did that today,” Murdoch said. “Patrick [Turner] came out hot with three goals, and that set the tone for the rest of the game.”
McGill kept the pressure on in the second quarter, putting up five more goals and allowing just two. Though their offensive success was the story of the game, the Redmen defenders and goaltender Michael Gallo came up with some momentous stops on the other end of the field.
“Our defence looked really great,” Head Coach Tim Murdoch said. “Our goaltender had a tremendous game. [….] On top of that, [third-year defenceman] Tanner Baldin and [second-year defenceman] Oliver Bolsterli, [who are] anchoring our defence, both had fantastic games. They were marking the two best players on the Ottawa team, and I thought that they did a really good job of containing them.”
With an 11-3 lead going into the second half, the Redmen started getting their second and third-line players into the game. McGill didn’t control the game quite like it did in the first half, but the performance was compelling nonetheless, and the Redmen ultimately came out on top 17-8.
“We’re a really deep team,” Turner said. “The guys on the bench can do just as much as the starters can do.”
After a few close games this season, the Redmen were relieved with this blowout win.
“[Ottawa] […] took us to overtime last weekend,” Murdoch said. “They have a lot of great athletes, but we felt that, last weekend, we really underperformed on the road. [….] To see the guys come out tonight and look so dominant was very reassuring, and beating a team like Ottawa by nine goals is impressive.”
Maxime Murdoch attributed the Redmen’s success to staying focused until the final minute.
“We’ve been struggling to put together four quarters but, I think today we did okay,” Maxime Murdoch said. “I think it was our best game of the season so far.”
McGill will now take advantage of their bye weekend to rest, recover, and look ahead to their next game at Bishop’s (2-2).
“[Bishop’s is] always a tough test, especially over in Lenoxville,” Coach Murdoch said. “We lost the game to them last year by a goal, so it’s going to be an important game for us.”
Moment of the Game:
Maxime Murdoch accelerated across the face of the goal, in an epic, near-diving shot on net, to score his fourth goal of the game.
“I think it’s a mentality thing. We had team meeting the other day, and I think that [the meeting] kind of shaped us up, and we were ready to go.” – Patrick Turner on the Redmen’s improvement from recent performances
Turner and Maxime Murdoch scored four goals each, but seven other players also contributed to McGill’s 17 goals.