By Gene Morris
Going into the first game of the season for both clubs, the Siena Saints knew they had to focus on shutting down the prolific Stony Brook scoring duo of Kevin Crowley and Jordan McBride. In the end, the Saints could not manage to slow down the two Seawolves.
McBride scored a game-high eight goals while Crowley added four in a blistering offensive performance at LaValle Stadium earlier today. The 21-14 final could have been even more lopsided if not for a six-goal run by Siena (0-1) early in the third quarter.
Tom Compitello had three goals and three assists for the Seawolves, and Robbie Campbell added three goals and two assists. Sophomore Kyle Belton also chipped in with two goals to round out the Stony Brook (1-0) attack.
“They’re just fun to watch,” Head Coach Rick Sowell said after the game. “It’s awfully tough to stop all six of them. You may shut down one, you may slow down another, but then Compitello is going to score goals, Kyle Belton is going to score. The beauty of that is we’re good this year, and we’re all coming back next year too.”
It was the connection of Crowley and McBride who shined brightest on this day. Four of Crowley’s game-high five assists led to McBride goals; a few of them easy in-tight goals, a few sniped from the outside.
McBride was firing away from all angles, but still was not completely satisfied. When told he had 17 shots, 12 of which were on goal, he responded, “I’m kind of upset if I had 17 shots; I’d like to score more goals.”
Always an unsung hero, junior Adam Rand won 29 of 39 faceoffs, giving the Seawolves many more possessions than Siena.
“Good luck trying to keep the score down on us,” Sowell said. “With our faceoff game and getting that many possessions, good luck trying to stop that offense when we can faceoff so well.”
The Saints six goal run brought them within five goals with just over three minutes remaining in the third, and Sowell admitted the team may have gotten a little nervous.
“The third quarter we go up 14-3, all of a sudden they went on a run on us,” he said. “We unraveled a little bit, we couldn’t get it back until late in the quarter… We got a little tight; I probably got the tightest because I wanted to win probably 100-3.”
Crowley reiterated that the team knew it was going to get Siena’s best effort coming out in the third, and made sure the team was ready.
“We said at the half, ‘Let’s keep this us, let’s keep going,” he said. “But when you are up 11 goals you’re going to relax a little more, maybe change the game plan a little bit, and that’s where they jump on you.”
With the offense having provided a huge cushion, the Saints were unable to get any closer than five goals.
“We have an offense that’s ‘pick your poison,’” Sowell said. “If you take away a certain aspect we’re going to exploit another aspect.”
Notes: The 21 goals by the Seawolves was three more than they scored in any game last year. They scored 18 times against Albany on Apr. 29… McBride’s eight goals were the most he has scored since he notched 10 against Delaware on Mar. 15, 2008. His 10 points were also more than any America East player scored in a single game all last year… The Seawolves next game is Saturday, Feb. 27 at No. 2 Virginia.