Senior Day — it is a day in collegiate sports when the team thanks the senior class in a celebration of all the hard work the athletes put forth during their school careers.
It also happened to be the Stony Brook Men’s Lacrosse regular season finale against Hartford.
At the Stony Brook Men’s Lacrosse Senior Day — Saturday afternoon against Hartford — the senior duo of attackmen Matt Schultz and Brody Eastwood combined for eight goals as the Seawolves downed the Hawks 16-8 at Kenneth P.
“Today was a good win for our guys,” head coach Jim Nagle said. “Hartford always gives us a difficult game, but we were able to play in our system, get the W on Senior Day.”
Stony Brook came out of halftime with the score tied 6-6. After Hartford won the ensuing faceoff, the Seawolves allowed a goal 11 seconds later, going down 7-6. From there, the Seawolves went on a 9-0 run.
“I went out there today like it was just a regular game,” Schultz reflected on his Senior Day. “I wanted to give thanks to my family for supporting me, but we had a job to do, play a game and win.”
Schultz scored three of the nine goals during the run, including one where he shot the ball behind the back of his defender and in off the far post.
Along with the offense, which has combined to score 47 goals over its last three games, the Seawolves’ defense performed well too.
From halftime to the final whistle, the Hawks were only able to attempt eight shots on goal total, four in each quarter, and only two goals.
“I thought our defense stepped up,” Schultz said. “I thought our defense buckled down and played great and we were patient on offense which really opened things up for us.”
Schultz finished the contest with five goals, bringing his season goal total to 39, which ranks first on the team. Senior midfielder Challen Rogers added three assists.
Junior midfielder Jay Lindsay also stepped up for the Seawolves. Lindsay, Stony Brook’s faceoff specialist, squared off against Hartford midfielder Dylan Protecto, who entered the game as the best faceoff player in the country statistically. Lindsay was able to win 11 faceoffs, to Protecto’s 15.
With the regular season finished, the America East Tournament is just around the corner, and Albany is the favorite to win the conference and clinch a berth to the NCAA tournament.
“We know Albany is a good team, they’re well coached, but that isn’t our focus at the moment,” senior goalkeeper Zach Oliveri said. “Our next step is to focus on the prep work we need to do to win the first round.”
In that first round, second-seeded Stony Brook will face third-seeded Vermont, a team the Seawolves defeated 13-10 on April 3. The tournament, hosted by Albany, begins on Thursday, when Stony Brook will play at 4:30 p.m..
“We would love to make the tournament,” Eastwood said. “It’s been a rough few years for us, but we are extremely motivated to make it back to the tournament this year.”