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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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    Seawolves Clinch Second Seed in American East Tournament

    The Seawolves sent a message to the rest of the teams in the American East Conference, concluding their season with a (5-0) rout over the Maine Black Bears. With the victory the team clinched the second seed and a first round bye in the American East Tournament.

    Forward Brooke Barbuto, one of the four senior players that were honored before the last regular season game, contributed to three goals in the game, finishing with a goal and two assists.

    After the pre-game ceremony, the Seawolves came out firing on all cylinders, scoring two goals in the first half of the game. It was only five minutes into the game when Barbuto hit Colleen McKenna in stride with a strong pass from the right wing. McKenna faked out the goalkeeper and scored one of her two goals in the game. The Seawolves struck again in the 18th minute, as Barbuto threaded the needle with a pass to Kate Collins, who kicked the ball passed the goalkeeper, adding to the lead.

    In the second half, the game turned physical, as the players battled for field position. “Keep your foot on the gas,” assistant coach Steve Welham shouted to the players.

    The Seawolves defense, led by Alexis Lindo and Sarah Dwyer, pressured the Black Bear offense into taking nine difficult shots that were all denied by the Seawolves goalie, Marisa Viola.

    The Seawolves pushed the ball up the field.

    Barbuto received the pass and drove towards the goal.

    She looked for an opening in the defense, but as was tripped up by one of the Black Bear defenders as she made a move.

    The referee blew the whistle and Barbuto lined up for the penalty kick.

    The goalkeeper prepared to defend a high shot and leaped to the right, as the Seawolves forward kicked the ball into the lower left corner of the net.

    The crowd erupted as the teammates rushed to Barbuto, who scored what could be her final goal as a member of the Stony Brook Seawolves.

    “It felt amazing to score a goal today,” Barbuto said. “This was a big win for us.”

    The Seawolves added two more goals, winning by the largest margin of the season. With the victory the Seawolves captured the second seed in the American East Tournament, the first time in the team’s history.

    “Clearly the goal for us coming into the season was to finish in the top two seeds of the conference and we did that today,” coach Sue Ryan said.

    The Seawolves will get a few days to rest and prepare to play this Sunday at 6 p.m., when they will host the winner of the New Hampshire and Binghamton quarterfinal match-up. The Seawolves will face strong competition, as the difference in the regular season match-ups against both teams was a single goal. The Seawolves lost (3-2) to New Hampshire on Oct. 2 and defeated Binghamton (3-2) a week ago.

    The Seawolves have won five of their last six games heading into the tournament, losing only to number one seed Boston University Terriers.

    “We are riding the momentum after a strong finish to the season,” assistant coach Welham said. “I think that will be our biggest advantage going into the playoffs.”

    Binghamton/New Hampshire v. Stony Brook Sunday at Kenneth P. La Valle Stadium

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