Stony Brook senior attacker Courtney Murphy took the ball, pivoted to the center of Bryant’s zone defense, and rifled an underhanded shot past the opposing goalkeeper — her sixth goal of the afternoon — to give her team a 16-4 lead with 18:27 remaining in Saturday’s home-opener win.
The captain then substituted from the game, perhaps a tad early even for such a blowout, to cheers from her teammates and the fans on the sideline. Head coach Joe Spallina coined it a “bit of a curtain call.”
Murphy set no records in the game, reached no significant milestones and her scoring barrage was hardly unusual; she scored an NCAA record 100 goals during her junior season. The attention was instead on her left hand, casted in red bandage like a badge of courage.
But some broken metacarpals were not enough to deter her from playing in the Seawolves’ 20-5 victory over the Bulldogs. Stony Brook, ranked No. 5 in the national Inside Lacrosse poll, dominated Bryant in a typical lopsided Spallina-era home win.
“I wanted to play,” Murphy said. “It’s my last year, I definitely wasn’t going to miss a bunch of games, so we figured it out.”
Stony Brook’s offense ran through junior attacker Kylie Ohlmiller, who notched a career-best 12 points (seven goals and five assists). Ohlmiller, whose younger sister Taryn scored the first tally of her career in the contest for Stony Brook, scored three early goals in a 53-second span for a hat trick.
“We scored a lot in our first game from the midfield, so I think they slid early onto our midfielders,” Spallina said. “Our attack reaped the benefits.”
Sophomore midfielder Keri McCarthy was quiet in the team’s win over Towson two weeks ago, only appearing on scant, isolated substitutions. After a strong week of practice, Spallina inserted McCarthy into the lineup, where she asserted herself in the offense — scoring two goals and two assists — and also dominated on draw controls, a category in which Stony Brook beat Bryant, 20-7, in the game.
“She had an enormous week of practice,” Spallina said, noting that he gave McCarthy the team’s Defensive MVP award in the game: “The best defense is a good offense, not letting the other team take possession.”
Junior midfielder Samantha DiSalvo added five points for Stony Brook, including three goals, after burying a pair of goals in the team’s opener. Senior defender Jessica Volpe notched her third career. The third-year-starter launched a deep outlet pass on an Ohlmiller goal early in the first half.
Murphy’s injury was sustained on a slash early in the Towson game, and Spallina said that her hand looked like a “boxing glove” after that match, but the team’s athletic trainer Barbara-Jean Ercolino gave clearance for the program’s all-time scoring leader to resume action.
Sophomore goalkeeper Anna Tesoriero saved five of ten shots faced in the game, including two stops on free-position attempts.
Stony Brook will drive to Poughkeepsie, NY for a game against Marist on Tuesday afternoon. The two teams last met in 2013, when the Seawolves won, 14-2.