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The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


Stony Brook men’s soccer’s regular-season title hopes plummet with first CAA loss

Forward Caleb Danquah crosses up a Temple defender on Tuesday, Oct. 17. The Stony Brook men’s soccer team was shut out on Friday by Monmouth. GEORGE CARATZAS/THE STATESMAN

The Stony Brook men’s soccer team could not find its footing until it was too late, dropping it two spots in the Coastal Athletic Association (CAA) table.

The Seawolves (6-4-4, 4-1-2 CAA) failed to overcome the wet conditions at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium on Friday, as they fell 2-0 to the Monmouth Hawks (7-3-4, 4-1-2 CAA). Monmouth now sits atop the CAA, as it owns the head-to-head tiebreaker over Stony Brook. If either side from the Drexel-Hofstra match on Saturday earns a win, then the winner will take first place and bump the Seawolves down to third place.

Stony Brook spent the whole first half trying to find a way to keep the ball through the rain, while Monmouth had already figured it out. The Hawks owned 57% of the possession and outshot the Seawolves 10-4 before halftime. Goalkeeper Edmond Kaiser was called into action continuously and kept the match scoreless with four saves in the first half.

In the 50th minute, Monmouth defender Griffin Tomas took on midfielder Justin Jean-Louis, using stepovers as he approached the box. Tomas’ craftiness got the best of Jean-Louis, causing him to commit a foul. On the free kick, Monmouth forward Ben Zakowski crossed the ball onto the back post, which defender Gabe Dahlin met with a header. Fellow defender Bastian Hatcher kept the ball up with a header of his own, which found defender Olle Brorsson. Brorsson completed the trio of headers by placing his beyond Kaiser to give the Hawks a 1-0 lead.

Just over five minutes later, the Seawolves’ undersized defense was exploited again. In the 55th minute, a corner from Monmouth midfielder Erik Reis found a wide open Brorsson on the penalty marker. His header was true once again, beating Kaiser to the bottom right corner and doubling the Hawks’ lead.

Head coach Ryan Anatol was disappointed with his team’s defending off set pieces.

“Ultimately, it came down to set pieces,” Anatol said in a postgame interview with The Statesman. “We didn’t do a good enough job defending them. We gave away too many set pieces, giving them free opportunities to play the ball into the box.”

With a 2-0 lead, the Hawks were comfortable letting Stony Brook attack while they sat in a low block. After the second goal, the Seawolves had eight shots, but none were good enough to break up Monmouth goalkeeper Eryk Dymora’s clean sheet.

Anatol attributed the Seawolves’ offensive struggles in part to the Hawks’ unrelenting defense.

“They defended well,” Anatol said. “They are pretty aggressive in their press and counter-press. We didn’t have a lot of time to be on the ball and move the ball.”

Stony Brook was outshot 15-12. Forward Jonas Bičkus led his team with three shots and landed two on target. Defender Jacson Coppack and midfielder Alex Fléury had two shots apiece. Coppack tallied the Seawolves’ only other shot on goal.

Stony Brook held Zakowski — the conference’s top goalscorer — without a goal, but he did lead the Hawks with four shots.

Kaiser made five saves, while Dymora made three. Dymora became the first CAA goalkeeper to shut out the Seawolves this year.

Looking ahead, Stony Brook will wrap up its nonconference schedule on Tuesday with its home finale against the Lafayette Leopards. The Leopards are 7-4-3 this year after beating Boston University 2-0 last Saturday. Before playing the Seawolves, Lafayette will take on Loyola Maryland on Saturday. Opening kickoff for Tuesday’s contest is set for 6:31 p.m.

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About the Contributor
Alex Streinger, Assistant Sports Editor
Alex Streinger is an Assistant Sports Editor of The Statesman. He is a junior majoring in journalism and minoring in political science. He is the beat reporter of the Stony Brook men’s soccer and nationally-ranked women’s lacrosse teams. He interns at Movendi International, the largest independent global social movement for development through alcohol prevention.
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