Saturday, October 5, 2013

Stony Brook Football postgame presser AUDIO: Seawolves beat Bryant 21-13 in front of largest crowd (11,224) at LaValle Stadium

Greg Logan, Newsday
Reeling from three straight losses, including a five-overtime heartbreaker at FBS Buffalo and a second-half meltdown a week earlier against FCS No. 2 Towson, Stony Brook coach Chuck Priore repeated one theme all week to his team: "Finish."
But when Bryant scored what should have been the tying touchdown early in the fourth quarter, only to miss an extra point, the fear of a fourth straight loss was staring the Seawolves in the face.
That's when quarterback Lyle Negron, playing with an injured throwing shoulder, responded with a clinching 41-yard touchdown pass down the middle to wide-open Devante Wheeler for a 21-13 victory Saturday night that had a record crowd of 11,224 for homecoming at LaValle Stadium in suspense to the end.
The Bulldogs (3-2) of the Northeast Conference got the ball back and drove to the Stony Brook 27, but defensive end Leston Simpson sacked quarterback Mike Westerhaus of Farmingville for a 1-yard loss on third down. After a fourth-down incompletion, the Seawolves (2-3) regained control with 3:40 left and ran out the clock.
"Pretty or not, our goal was to finish in the fourth quarter," Priore said. "We scored after they scored; we stopped them, and we got the first down . They did what we asked."
Negron was 16-for-22 for 260 yards and two TDs, and SBU outgained the Bulldogs 379 yards to 280. Wide receiver Malcolm Eugene caught eight passes for 92 yards, Wheeler had three for 77 yards and Adrian Coxson added two for 69 yards, including a 63-yard TD that gave the Seawolves a 14-7 halftime lead.
Bryant held Stony Brook to 119 rushing yards, including 48 by Jameel Poteat and 45 each by Tyler Fredericks and James Kenner. Kenner scored on an 8-yard run on the Seawolves' opening drive of the game, but Westerhaus tied it at 7 on a fourth-down TD pass of 2 yards to Ryan Barrett.
The Seawolves blew two first-half scoring opportunities, failing on fourth-and-1 at the Bryant 39 and missing a 28-yard field goal by Nick Ferrara.
When Westerhaus dropped back to pass early in the fourth and scrambled untouched up the middle for a 13-yard TD, Bryant sensed the upset possibility despite Tom Alberti's missed PAT.
But Negron moved the Seawolves to the Bryant 41, where they faced third-and-9. They lined up with three wide receivers with Wheeler in a slot left. At the snap, two Bryant defenders were over his head, but they misread the play, and Wheeler was wide open down the middle.
"It was a cover 2 look, so I knew I was 'hot' and ran my route and adjusted it to the coverage and caught the ball and scored," Wheeler said. "I saw the middle linebacker come up, so I knew I could get over the top of him. I knew there would be a big hole right there in the middle."
Negron said Wheeler was his second read on the play, but he sensed what was coming. "He was wide open," Negron said. "I went through my progressions and he had his hand up. It was great. I was glad Devante was able to score. It gave us that extra energy for defense."
Bryant converted three crucial third-down plays to move to Stony Brook's 27, but Simpson, who said he missed a sack earlier in the game, wrapped up Westerhaus on third down for a yard loss before the final incompletion.
"All week, Coach was preaching finish," Simpson said. "He told us the game was in our hands and we had to finish. We just rallied as a defense and came up with some big plays at the end."

Men's Soccer wins 1-0... thrilling overtime victory over rival-Albany at LaValle Stadium on WUSB

Seawolves beat New Hampshire in 5 sets at Pritchard Gym season opener!

Friday, October 4, 2013

America East Men's Basketball Championship moves to campus sites in 2015

Cambridge, Mass. — The excitement of March Madness will be coming to multiple America East campuses starting in 2015 as the conference announced a revamp of its men’s basketball championship format on Thursday. For the 2015 and 2016 seasons, the entire tournament will take place on campus sites with the higher-seeded school hosting each game throughout the championship. “This is an exciting and positive change for men’s basketball in our conference,” said America East Commissioner Amy Huchthausen. “This format will afford more of our campuses the chance to experience the thrill of postseason basketball, while also protecting our strongest teams and giving them the best opportunity to advance to the NCAA tournament with the highest seed possible.” The format change, which was unanimously proposed by America East’s head coaches, was endorsed by the conference’s Athletic Directors and Presidents in June. A conference committee was then formed to examine parameters and logistics of the championship with the conference’s Athletic Directors’ Council finalizing those details this week. “This was a collaborative effort among our coaches, athletic directors and presidents to evaluate various options with the goal of enhancing men’s basketball in our league and I commend them for their dialogue and diligence throughout this process,” said Huchthausen. The quarterfinals will take place on four different campuses on the Wednesday following the final weekend of conference play, 11 days prior to Selection Sunday. Following the quarterfinal round, the bracket will be re-seeded and match up the highest remaining seeds against the lowest remaining seeds in the semifinals, which will occur four days after the quarterfinals on Sunday. A conference champion will be crowned six days later on Saturday in front of a national television audience on ESPN2. “This is great for our league,” said Stony Brook men’s basketball coach Steve Pikiell. “We have great home court venues and enthusiastic fan bases across the conference. To be rewarded for a great regular season and have an opportunity to play in front our fans and bring a piece of March Madness to multiple campuses is really exciting.” “Moving to this high-seed format and re-seeding the bracket enables us to protect our best teams, the teams that have shown their mettle over the course of a 16-game schedule,” said University of Vermont Associate Vice President & Director of Athletics Robert Corran. “This will put the conference in a better position to send its best representative forward to the NCAA tournament and obtain its best possible seed. We felt that was very important for the health of men’s basketball in our conference both in the short and long term.” The America East Men’s Basketball Championship has had a high-seed format 11 times previously, the last in 1995. The tournament was played on campus sites in each round from 1981-82, 1984-87 and 1991-95. For the past four years, and again in 2014, the early rounds of the championship have been combined with the women and held at a single site with the championship games at the highest remaining seed. The men’s championship was held on its own at a single site and the championship game at the highest remaining seed from 1996-2009. The entire championship was held at the Hartford Civic Center from 1988-90, while early rounds were played at campus sites with the semifinals and final at a single site in 1980 and 1983.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Stony Brook Men's Basketball: ESPN Feature

By Eamonn Brennan

It's college basketball preview season, and you know what that means: tons of preseason info to get you primed for 2013-14. But what do you really need to know? Each day for the next month, we'll highlight the most important, interesting or just plain amusing thing each conference has to offer this season -- from great teams to thrilling players to wild fans and anything in between. Up next: The sneaky-good Stony Brook Seawolves. I'll always remember the first time I watched Stony Brook play basketball. My memory isn't vivid because of Stony Brook itself. It was mid-November, 2010, roughly seven hours into my first-ever College Hoops Tip-Off marathon chat. The 6 a.m. ET start slot went to Stony Brook and Monmouth, which is precisely the kind of game that gets scheduled at 6 a.m. ET -- both schools small enough to be willing. I remember being impressed by the sold-out Monmouth crowd. I remember being floored that a few hundred people were a) awake and b) spending their time chatting with me. I remember being horrified by a shrieking woman, or at least chatting about a shrieking woman; she could have been in a different game. Things were already starting to blur together. But I do remember two things: The game was thrillingly close, and the basketball was pretty bad. Stony Brook would go on to win 15 games in 2010-11. They ended the season ranked No. 216 in the Pomeroy adjusted efficiency rankings. They were never particularly noteworthy. All of which comes in service of this point: There was very little reason to expect Stony Brook would vault into the nation's top 60 just a few seasons later. I would venture to guess even most die-hard college hoops fans had no idea. But it really happened: In 2012-13, the Seawolves went 25-8, finished No. 55 in the Pomeroy rankings, suffered a couple of ugly losses (Sacred Heart, Hartford) along the way, went 14-2 in their league, and lost to Albany 61-59 in the America East tournament. The 2013-14 season holds nearly as much promise. There is the small matter of replacing senior guard Marcus Rouse, who shot 41 percent from 3, turned the ball over on fewer than 10 percent of his possessions and was a major factor on the defensive end, where Steve Pikiell's team shined. Waving farewell to senior forward Tommy Brenton won't be easy, either; those are two big defensive losses. But Stony Brook has three starters returning, and a host of promising young players. The best of them last season was 6-foot-8 freshman forward Jameel Warney, who shot nearly 62 percent from the field, cleared double-digit rebounding rate tallies on both ends of the floor, blocked 6.6 percent of opponents' available shots, and gradually began to fit the archetype of the dominant mid-major star. Warney's going to be really good in 2013-14, and it appears Stony Brook could be, too. Had you told me that back in November of 2010, I would have -- well, I would have asked you to bring me a cup of coffee. Then I would have told you that you were crazy. But here we are, and here Stony Brook is, on the verge of a mid-major breakout, no caffeine required.