Saturday, October 6, 2012

Kyle Essington, Kevin Norrell, Jordan Gush show Stony Brook has air attack in blowout of Charleston Southern

By Greg Logan, Newsday
For a change, Stony Brook running back Miguel Maysonet was as much a spectator as a participant at the Seawolves' usual offensive show. Sure, he managed to set career rushing records for both SBU and the Big South Conference while carrying 11 times for 88 yards Saturday night at LaValle Stadium.
But Maysonet was more impressed by the big-play passing game quarterback Kyle Essington put on with wide receivers Kevin Norrell and Jordan Gush in Stony Brook's 49-7 victory over Charleston Southern in the league opener for both schools.
Essington tied a school record with five touchdown passes, including three to Gush for 1, 4 and 27 yards, and two to Norrell covering 29 and 8 yards. Essington completed 13 of 19 passes for 263 yards, and Norrell had a career-high 214 receiving yards on eight catches.
"The way we run the ball, it definitely puts a lot of [defenders] in the box," Maysonet said of how the Buccaneers crowded the line of scrimmage. "Kyle and Kevin do unbelievable things. Kevin's catch at the two-yard line was ridiculous."
Norrell had a bunch of big catches, starting with a 29-yard TD on a post pattern for Stony Brook's opening score. But the best undoubtedly was a 28-yard sideline out to start the second quarter. Norrell laid out horizontally to make the catch while keeping his feet inbounds. That set up Maysonet's 1-yard scoring run for a 14-0 lead. "I knew I was drifting over, and I saw the line coming up," Norrell said. "I had to keep my feet in, and Kyle threw a perfect ball."
After Charleston Southern (1-4, 0-1 Big South) cut the deficit to 14-7, Essington opened Stony Brook's next drive by hitting Norrell on a post for 42 yards, and that led to Essington's 1-yard TD throw to Gush for a 21-7 lead.
It worked so well the first time that Essington came back with the deep post to Norrell for 51 yards to the CSU 25 on the opening play of the next drive. Three plays later, Norrell caught an 8-yard fade to the left corner for his second TD and a 28-7 halftime lead. Norrell later caught a 39-yarder down the middle on the first play of a drive that ended with Essington's 27-yard TD pass to Gush for a 42-7 lead.
"The defense was really playing the run hard because they fear Miguel and Marcus Coker," Essington said of the Seawolves' powerful running tandem. "It probably was eight guys keying on the running game and it opened everything up. Kevin is really talented, and I trust him to get open."
You can't blame defenses for loading up against the run. Coker had 19 carries for 80 yards, giving Maysonet a break from the pounding. Of course, Maysonet still reached 3,649 career rushing yards, passing the Stony Brook record of 3,607 set by Conte Cuttino and the Big South record of 3,633 yards set by Liberty's Rashad Jennings (now with the NFL's Jaguars).
"Two in one game," Maysonet said with a smile. "It shows what we do is working as an offense. The award goes to the whole team."

Friday, October 5, 2012

Stony Brook Baseball Team and Marching Band to appear at 2012 Columbus Day Parade

Stony Brook, N.Y. - The Stony Brook baseball team will participate in the 68th annual Columbus Day Parade on Monday, Oct. 8 on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue from 47th to 72nd Street from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The parade will be televised on WABC-TV Channel 7 from 12-3 p.m.

The team will ride on a special float, generously donated by the Columbus Citizens Foundation, to celebrate their "Shock the World" run to the 2012 College World Series. For the second straight year, the Spirit of Stony Brook Marching Band will perform in the parade.

In addition, Wolfie, Stony Brook's fun-loving mascot, will be outfitted with a GoPro Camera on his head, allowing WABC-TV to cut to him and give viewers a first-person view of marchers and parade onlookers. 

The 68th annual Columbus Day Parade will feature 35,000 marchers and over 100 contingents, including virtuoso performances of traditional Italian and Italian-American music and dance, street performers, historical and contemporary floats, over a dozen marching bands, and national and international dignitaries. 

After winning the America East championship, the Seawolves upended Miami (FL), Missouri State and Central Florida to win the Coral Gables Regional and advance to the Baton Rouge Super Regional against six-time national champion, LSU. The Tigers took game one, but Stony Brook bounced back to win games two and three to shock the world and advance to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb. 

The Seawolves capped the 2012 campaign with 52 wins, a program record, and laid claim to being the first-ever America East team and first Northeast Region team since 1986 to reach the College World Series.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Wes Skiffington has been pretty special for Stony Brook

By Greg Logan, Newsday

It came as no surprise after Stony Brook's first FBS win at Army that Miguel Maysonet was named Big South offensive player of the week for his career-best 220-yard rushing performance and that SBU's entire defense won for holding Army to three points. But theSeawolves made it a clean sweep when kicker Wes Skiffington won special-teams honors for booting three key field goals in the 23-3 victory.
As coach Chuck Priore said of the milestone win, "I think the biggest part of the special day is we played well. It wasn't a fluke."
It was a complete performance that wrapped up the non-conference portion of Stony Brook's schedule with a 4-1 record and No. 13 national ranking in both Football Championship Subdivision polls.
Now, the Seawolves open Big South Conference play againstCharleston Southern (1-3) at 6 p.m. Saturday at LaValle Stadium to begin their quest for a second straight FCS playoff berth.
As well as Stony Brook has played on both sides of the ball this season, it's easy to overlook how much better the kicking game has become with Skiffington also handling punting duties and averaging 41.5 yards per kick.
"Being able to change the field position like he's done in his punting has allowed us to play defense in a positive situation," Priore said.
Charleston Southern hasn't done a good job stopping the run, suggesting Skiffington might kick a lot of extra points Saturday. But there likely will come a time during Big South play where Skiffington will be counted upon for a big field goal such as the 44-yarder he hit at the end of the first half to give SBU a 13-0 lead at Army.
"That was a big kick," Skiffington said. "To get that first FBS win in my four years here, it's a nice feeling for us and the team."
Over the course of Skiffington's career, the Seawolves have won three straight Big South titles, and now have become a national contender.
They have a comfort level knowing Skiffington can make field goals under pressure.
"It's just faith from the team and from Coach P," Skiffington said. "That first year, I remember he gave me a rubber band and said, 'Anytime you're out there and feel like anything is going to go wrong, just look down at that rubber band, give it a little tug and know that I'm behind you.' Special teams doesn't need to be a question mark on this team."

Tuesday, October 2, 2012