Every week, our Sports staff will take a deeper look at Stony Brook’s football games and what the team did well and where it went wrong.

First Down: Seawolves outplayed.

Stony Brook faced its toughest test of the season on Saturday when it faced fifth-ranked James Madison on the road. The Dukes entered the game with an undefeated record, and kept it with little challenge from the Seawolves.

It was a lopsided game from the get-go, as James Madison scored three touchdowns in the first quarter before the Seawolves got on the board. The Dukes out-gained the Seawolves 519-358, with most of Stony Brook’s yards-gained coming when the game was already out of reach. The Seawolves were on the road against one of the Football Conference Subdivision’s best teams, and it showed in the score.


Although it may not have been a close contest, Stony Brook is not alone in the department of losing handily against James Madison. The Dukes have won all of their FCS games by at least two touchdowns, scoring at least 38 points in each game. They even scored 48 points on the road against Southern Methodist University of the Football Bowl Subdivision last week. Early on, it is looking like the CAA could be James Madison’s to lose.

Second down: No Bedell does not bode well for Stony Brook.

Junior running back Stacey Bedell was out with a shoulder injury, and Stony Brook’s run-heavy offense now has a void the size of the Grand Canyon to fill.

And on Saturday, it did not look like there was anyone on the roster capable of being an every-down back. The team averaged only 2.5 yards per carry, and had no running back eclipse 40 yards rushing. Freshman running back Isaiah White led the way with 10 carries for 32 yards. He has shown potential early on, but looks too young to shoulder a major load in 2015.


Sophomore running back Donald Liotine was right behind him with nine carries and 28 yards. While a solid complementary player, he does not appear to be ready to carry a full workload either. If Bedell is forced to miss an extended period of time, Stony Brook will have a litany of unanswered questions on the offensive side of the ball.

Third Down: Defense-less.

Stony Brook’s defense is typically dominant. It was the sixth-best in the 125-team FCS in 2014 and was stellar during its first three games, allowing no more than 21 points in any contest.

This was not the case on Saturday afternoon. Stony Brook allowed 38 points, the most it has given up since 2013, including 21 in the first quarter. James Madison had three players rush for at least 85 yards en route to 294 total yards on the ground. They converted on 11 of 17 third down tries, and went five-for-seven in the red zone. The Dukes made the Seawolves’ elite defense look tame.

Whether this is indicative of James Madison’s offensive dominance—or an off-game for Stony Brook—remains to be seen. Either way, it was not a typical game on defense for the Seawolves.


Fourth Down: Silver linings.

Finding bright spots in a 38-20 loss is not always easy, but there were a couple worth mentioning. Sophomore wide receiver Ray Bolden had six receptions for a season-high 102 yards. He has had at least five receptions and 50 yards in every game this season, and could very well be Stony Brook’s flashiest playmaker with Bedell out.

Sophomore defensive back Tyrice Beverette led the team with 14 tackles, nine of which were solo. Senior defensive lineman Victor Ochi continued to impress by recording 1.5 tackles for loss. He now has five tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks on the season.

Additionally, even though Stony Brook allowed 38 points on defense, it was the fewest amount of points James Madison’s high-flying offense scored all season.

Extra Point: Looking ahead.

Stony Brook will look to regroup next weekend as they head into its bye week. After that, the Seawolves will play again at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium on Oct. 17 for Homecoming against Towson. Under head coach Chuck Priore, the Seawolves are 4-4 in games after a bye week, and are 8-1 in homecoming games, with the one loss coming last season in a heartbreaker against William & Mary.


Towson is 2-2 this season, and lost its only conference game last week against Elon, 17-13. They had their bye week this week, and will face James Madison next week. So it is entirely possible that both teams could be coming off losses to James Madison heading into next Saturday’s game.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.