(STATESMAN STOCK PHOTO)
The Seawolves hockey team clinched the ESCHL season title against Rutgers on Feb. 6. STATESMAN STOCK PHOTO

Over the weekend, the Seawolves manhandled the Scarlet Ice Knights of Rutgers en route to a guaranteed playoff berth at the ACHA National Tournament.

The domination began Friday night, which also doubled as Alumni Night. In front of a sea of Stony Brook faithful, the Seawolves dispatched of the visiting Scarlet Ice Knights by a final of 12-0.

Forward Bobby Guidal led the scoring charge with a hat trick, while goalie Derek Willms held steadfast, blocking all 24 Rutgers shots, leading to the Seawolves’ first shutout since Dec. 6 against Delaware.

“[Guidal] was in the right spot at the right time all night,” said Stony Brook head man Chris Garofolo. It did not take very long for another shutout to happen—24 hours, in fact.

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This time around, it was sophomore goalie Todd Scarola who stood on his head as the Seawolves once again cruised to victory, this time by a final of 8-0.

It was not just the netminders who displayed their depth, but in the absence of senior forward Sam Brewster and senior defenseman Chris Joseph, who are both away with Team USA in the Winter World University Games, the five out in front of the goaltenders stepped up in a major way.

“It is an opportunity for players to come in and play and they’re capitalizing on their opportunities,” Garofalo said about his team.

The last time these two teams met back on Oct. 17 and 18, the Seawolves cruised to a 13-1 victory, before scratching out a 5-3 victory. For the year, they finished up with a 4-0 record against Rutgers and outscored them 38-4 in those matchups.

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A big part of the success this season has been the balance as well as the depth of this team. “I’d rather have seven guys with 20 points than two guys with 50 and then the rest with 10,” Garofolo said.

The Seawolves have six players with 20 points or more on the season, with Vincent Lopes leading the way with 46 points, tallying 22 goals and 24 assists on the year. Nick Barbera is tied for the team lead with the same number of assists.

The Seawolves finish up their regular season next weekend at home, as, they welcome in the Lebanon Valley College Flying Dutchmen, who are third in the ESCHL with 32 points. Faceoff on Saturday night at The Rinx in Hauppauge is scheduled for 8:30 p.m., while Sunday’s regular-season finale is slated for 3:30 p.m.

Cameron Boon contributed to this story

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