With its 1-0 loss at New Hampshire on Sunday afternoon, the Stony Brook women’s soccer team lost hope of once again qualifying for the America East Tournament, finishing the season in seventh place in the conference.
A goal in the 21st minute by Wildcat forward Brooke Murphy was all that New Hampshire needed to end the season of the defending regular season co-America East Champion Seawolves.
Despite outshooting the Wildcats 11-10 in the game, the Seawolves could not muster anything after the 80th minute, during which redshirt sophomore Raven Edwards hit the post.
Entering the game, Stony Brook controlled their own fate, having the opportunity to beat the New Hampshire in order to earn their conference tournament berth.
As the final minutes ticked off the clock, so did the careers of many key Seawolves.
Redshirt senior goalkeeper Ashley Castanio and seniors, forward Megan Rea, midfielder Christina Casamassima and forward Shannon Grogan put on their Stony Brook jerseys for the final time as Seawolves.
Grogan and Rea both excelled as they spent their final moments of college soccer on the field, kicking two shots and one shot on goal, respectively.
Although Castanio gave up the lone goal of the contest, she did contribute well to the effort with six saves in the game.
Edwards ended up leading the team’s scoring effort for the season, putting four of the team’s 17 goals in the back of the net.
Freshman forward Maddie Good proved that she will be a player to look out for as the Seawolves prepare for next season, contributing three goals in her first season at Stony Brook.
Junior Tessa Devereaux was a major contributor to the team’s efforts this season, as she was a part of many of the team’s goals, assisting on seven while scoring two of her own.
On Thursday, the Seawolves took on the America East-leading Hartford Hawks and played them to a 0-0 draw in a match on the team’s senior night at LaValle Stadium.
“I think both teams are disappointed,” head coach Sue Ryan said after the tie.
“I think earlier in the year, both teams walk away going ‘oh it’s a point.’ But now they’re going ‘wow we both had opportunities and are disappointed not to get the three points.”
The good thing about the draw is that the Seawolves now control their own destiny in a matchup against the New Hampshire Wildcats on Sunday afternoon up in Durham, N.H.
In a game in which the Hawks out-shot Stony Brook 26-11, it was the rock in the back, Ashley Castanio, doing what she has done for the past four years. She made two incredible saves, along with seven others, to keep Chanel Johnson and company out of the net.
Sidney Spremullo was open in the first half, as she spun and tried to get a sold shot off, but the Oceanside, N.Y. native dove and tipped it wide of the net.
Castanio did the same thing in overtime, going full extension on a shot by Aaliyah Ingram on the turf, and she tipped it wide to keep the game going.
“The biggest thing is to see where they plant their foot and go with your instincts,” she said. “You cannot understate this. When she’s on her game this way, you feel like they can’t score and we can’t lose,” Ryan added.
The game went back and forth all the way, but the Seawolves were not able to get many shots to the net.
Of the 11 they took, only one of them got to the net, with a few of them getting blocked by Hartford defenders.
The only shot that got through was after a through ball from Elise Pratt found Shannon Grogan on the left side of the box, but the chip shot in the clear did not get high enough, and Jessica Jurg was able to haul it in.
Overall, the Seawolves finished their season with a 5-10-2 record, going 2-4-2 in the America East.
The team was dominant at home, performing well at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium. All five of the Seawolves wins on the year came at home.
Their performance on the road, however, was not as strong. In the games that Ryan’s team left the Stony Brook campus, they returned with nine losses.
Stony Brook will spend their off season working towards getting back to the top of
the America East Conference.