Defense shined as the Stony Brook Football team defeated No. 19 North Dakota 13-9 on Thursday night at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium.
- Moment that mattered: Redshirt freshman Gavin Heslop broke through the line and stuffed a North Dakota punt with 8:52 remaining in the fourth quarter. Senior Kye Morgan returned the block for a touchdown, giving the Seawolves a 13-9 lead on which they would not look back. On the ensuing possession, the Fighting Hawks drove the ball all the way to the Seawolves’ 24-yard line. Stony Brook’s defense stopped a fourth-and-one attempt in the red zone with 2:14 left in the game, sealing the win for the Seawolves.
- What the win means: Stony Brook started off its season beating a ranked opponent. It also shows just how deadly their defense can be, allowing only 177 yards in leading the charge for the win. The team has now won five season-openers in the last six seasons.
- Standout Seawolf: Despite mainly playing in the secondary, senior defensive back Jaheem Woods seemed at home behind the line of scrimmage. He recorded five tackles for loss, three sacks and forced a fumble.
- Three takeaways:
- Like last year, the Seawolves pass-rush was stifling. In addition to Woods’ four tackles for loss and two sacks, junior defensive back Tyrice Beverette had one sack and one tackle for a loss.
- The Seawolves relied more on passing than in past years. Redshirt sophomore quarterback Joe Carbone had 159 yards on 16-for-32 passing, but was constantly pressured, getting sacked four times. Junior wide receiver Ray Bolden caught five passes for 60 yards.
- Stony Brook was penalty ridded. The team was flagged seven times on the night for a total of 38 yards.
- What’s next: Stony Brook will take on Temple on the road at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on Sept. 10 at 1 p.m. The Owls are the Seawolves’ only Football Bowl Subdivision opponent this season.