The No. 8 Stony Brook Women’s Lacrosse team began its season in Rhode Island on Sunday, when head coach Joe Spallina’s team squared off with Bryant. The Bulldogs, the defending Northeast Conference champions and a team that participated in the 2015 NCAA Tournament, were slated to be a difficult opening match for the Seawolves.
They were not.
Sophomore attacker Kylie Ohlmiller propelled Stony Brook to a dominant 18-4 victory over Bryant.
The preseason Tewaaraton Watch List selectee had a game-high seven points, scoring five goals and two assists. The ever-flashy Ohlmiller buried two behind-the-back shots in the effort as the Bryant defense was unable to slow her down.
Junior attacker Courtney Murphy added four goals of her own in the Stony Brook victory, including one assisted by Ohlmiller. The pair combined for an on-goal shooting percentage of .900, burying nine of their 10 shots on goal.
“I could have my eyes closed and know right where Murph is,” Ohlmiller said. “It’s one of those telepathy type of things.”
At the other end of the field, freshman goalkeeper Anna Tesoriero impressed in her collegiate debut. Tesoriero, a product of Huntington, New York, faced 12 shots in the contest, turning away nine to earn the win in cage for the Seawolves.
“I think Anna’s going to play a big role in the cage,” junior midfielder Dorrien Van Dyke said. “I’m excited to see how she performs this year.”
Tesoriero allowed three of Bryant’s four goals, with senior goalkeeper Kaitlyn Leahy allowing the other goal in limited action.
While shooting percentages were a large attributor to the Seawolves’ success — Stony Brook led 78.2 percent to 30.8 percent in converting its shots on goal — possession metrics were also in the road team’s favor.
In draw controls, Stony Brook led 13-10. Junior midfielder Kristin Yevoli was the led the way in the faceoff circle, controlling six draws on her own. Yevoli’s dominance in the area is much needed for the Seawolves in a category that midfielder Michelle Rubino, now graduated, led Stony Brook last season.
Yevoli was also a key offensive contributor for Stony Brook, as the Massapequa native netted three goals. It was the fourth career hat trick for the midfielder.
Two freshman midfielders, Keri McCarthy and Kasey Mitchell, each scored the first goal of their Stony Brook careers in the second half, as part of an 8-0 run that extended the Seawolves’ lead over the Bulldogs.
The Stony Brook defense, the top-ranked unit in the NCAA in each of the last three seasons, prevented Bryant from stringing together consecutive goals in the match. Bryant senior attacker Lauren Descalzo, the 11th-ranked goal scorer in the country last season, to just one goal on the afternoon.
Next Sunday, Stony Brook will host No. 3 Florida in a marquee matchup at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium. This is the third consecutive season the two ranked teams have met, with the Seawolves winning in the Sunshine State 12-11 last season and the Gators winning on Long Island in 2014, 14-1.