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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


Seawolves men’s hoops can’t catch Seton Hall, exits NIT in first round

Trailing by two points, the Seawolves had the last shot at the basket in Tuesday’s NIT first-round game at Seton Hall. Senior Bryan Dougher scrambled and threw a desperation three.

It was way off, but junior Tommy Brenton grabbed the rebound with a tick left on the clock. His shot rolled around the rim and out, and Stony Brook’s season was over with a 63-61 loss.

Despite a rough start on Tuesday night, the Seawolves managed to come back and trailed by only two points after halftime. It may have been the few but rowdy Stony Brook fans, or the marching band’s support, but something lit a fire under the Seawolves players as they started to drain shots from all angles of the court. Dallis Joyner led the Seawolves in points during the game with 14 points and Dougher—the Stony Brook Division-I career points leader—finished with 12.

Seton Hall’s second-leading scorer this season, forward Herb Pope, had 20 points in the game, while point guard Jordan Theodore finished with 21 points and six assists. Defensive strengths were visible on both sides, but the Pirates made the necessary stops at the end to secure the victory.

Stony Brook inched closer and took the lead briefly in the second half, but the Pirates bounced back. Despite out-rebounding Seton Hall 44-23, the Seawolves couldn’t land the shot they needed at the end to win or force the game into overtime.

“It’s our last game, we’re playing a Big East team in their gym and it didn’t get off to the kind of start that I would’ve wrote out,” Pikiell said.

Stony Brook, who had a plus-7.9 rebounding margin this season, which was fifth in the nation, struggled to gain possession of the ball against the Pirates during the first few minutes of the game, and fouls ended up being a major problem for the America East runner-ups. Joyner and Dave Coley fouled out, forcing Stony Brook to rely on bench players.

Seton Hall’s height was also an advantage for the New Jersey team during the game. The Pirates have four players 6-foot-8 and taller.

Dougher, a New Jersey native, said he felt happy he was playing in his home state, and that it meant a lot to him to finish out his college career where he grew up.

“When I saw Seton Hall pop up on the NIT Selection Show, I was excited,” Dougher said. “I knew I’d have a lot of people here and I had a little bit of jitters early in the game.”

But after the slow start, Dougher was not surprised the Seawolves weren’t able to pull it out.

“You cant come here in, come down 12-2, and expect to win the game,” Dougher said.

During Coach Pikiell’s first season at Stony Brook, the Seawolves were 4-24 overall and 2-14 in the America East. By his fifth season, the team won the league with a 13-3 record and is now a dominant force in the America East. Pikiell has high aspirations for Stony Brook and thinks next year the team could be even better.

“We’re proud of where the program is and I think we’re going to be more talented next year,” said Pikiell. “I’m excited about the future. A lot of good things are going on at Stony Brook.”

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