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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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Record Crowd Watches Seawolves Fall to Villanova

On Thursday, the Villanova Wildcats defeated the Stony Brook Seawolves men’s basketball team by a score of 72-44. 4,285 people attended, setting a new record. The game was the second sellout in history, with the first coming in 1999, when SBU played St. John’s in their first ever Division I game. For Villanova coach Jay Wright, this marked his first game on Long Island since leaving Hofstra 5 years ago.

Villanova took the lead 5 seconds into the game, on the very first shot, and never looked back. They got on a 7-0 run during the first two minutes, forcing Stony Brook to burn a timeout early. It would take Stony Brook nearly 4 minutes to get on the board. Within 5 minutes, it was 15-2, following three 3-pointers from forward Shane Clark. Villanova would score 9 out of 25 3-pointers to SBU’s 3 for 8. 10 minutes in, the Wildcat lead was up to 26-8.

Villanova’s defense played very strong throughout the half, with Stony Brook having a hard time getting shots off, especially in the early stages. Villanova would continue to score up a storm, taking a 42-16 lead into halftime.

The second half was a somewhat different story for Villanova. The size of their lead fluctuated, and got as large as 31 points, but Stony Brook was able to hold the line in the second half. This was primarily because Villanova, feeling confident in their lead, gave a lot of playing time to their newer players, which Wright called ‘important.’ SBU coach Steve Pikiell identified the second half as a positive note for being able to slow down the Wildcats. He added that SBU basketball is a ‘very different program’ from last year’s in which many players were just starting out. Last year, Stony Brook traveled to Villanova and was crushed, 78-35.

Leading the way offensively for Stony Brook were Andre Vanterpool, Mitchell Beauford, and Ryan Jones, each of whom had 8 points. The Seawolves were without leading scorer Ricky Lucas, who missed the game with a sprained ankle. Stony Brook committed 24 fouls to Villanova’s 15, which allowed Villanova to outscore SBU 15-3 from the free throw line.

Pikiell commended Villanova, calling them ‘first class,’ for coming out to SBU when they weren’t required to play any away games in preseason. On the loss, he simply said, ‘we didn’t play well tonight.’ He added that the game was hard to prepare for, given that Villanova has many players who shoot well, and they only had one day between their last game and this one. Villanova improved their record to 4-1 with the victory, with Stony Brook dropping to 3-3. Stony Brook will try to pick up a win to wrap up their 3-game homestand on Tuesday against Hofstra. The game begins at 7PM, and can be seen on MSG. The game will also feature ‘Joe Nathan Night,’ honoring the SBU alum who now plays Major League Baseball for the Minnesota Twins.

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