Carson Puriefoy scored 25 points and knocked down five three-pointers, but it was not enough for the Stony Brook men’s basketball team, as the Seawolves lost 79-61 in a non-conference matinée against the Providence Friars in Providence, Rhode Island on Saturday.
The game was tightly contested for much of the afternoon. A pair of free throws from Puriefoy gave the Seawolves the lead with 16:44 remaining in the second half. From there, Providence dominated. The Friars pulled away quickly from the visitors, going on a 33-9 run to put the game out of reach.
After an early 10-5 lead for Stony Brook, Providence Head Coach Ed Cooley switched the Friar’s defense to a 2-3 zone. The young Seawolves lineup struggled against the opposing zone defense, shooting just 31 percent from the field and turning the ball over 15 times.
Jameel Warney, seeing double-teams on the low block all game long, had his worst statistical outing of the season on offense. The defending America East Player of the Year shot just four of 17 from the field for eight points.
Some early foul trouble may have contributed to Warney’s inability to get into a groove offensively. Warney played just 23 minutes on Saturday, the fewest he has played all season.
One way in which Warney and the Seawolves shined against Providence was with their rebounding. Stony Brook grabbed 21 offensive rebounds in the game and out-rebounded the Friars overall, 46-45.k
Despite limited playing time, Warney grabbed 14 rebounds on the afternoon and continues to be the leading rebounder in the country.
Providence turned the ball over just eight times all game long, tying the fewest an opposing offense has done so against Stony Brook this season. LaDontae Henton had 19 points to lead all scorers and freshman Kyron Cartwright had 10 points and 10 assists off the bench for his first career double-double.
Much of the Providence offense came via the fast-break, which may be a product of Stony Brook crashing the glass so aggressively. The Friars were quick with their outlet passes and beat the Seawolves down the floor for a basket several times in the second half.
Puriefoy was quietly the best player on the floor for either team on Saturday. The Seawolves point guard knocked down several contested jumpers late in the first half and early in the second half to keep Stony Brook in it. His 25 points were the second-highest of his career, only being trumped by the 26 he scored against Georgia a month ago.
Head coach Steve Pikiell has been tinkering with his allotment of minutes with players on the bench, particularly in the last couple of games. Chris Braley played over 20 minutes for the second-consecutive game on Saturday, after only averaging 6.2 minutes in the first five games of the season. As a result, freshmen Bryan Sekunda and Deshaun Thrower have seen reductions in their playing time over the last couple games, registering only nine and 19 minutes on Saturday, respectively.
The final game of the Stony Brook road trip will be on Thursday at Canisius at 7 p.m. The Seawolves are now 5-5 on the season, and are still in search of their first road win of the season.