Coming into Saturday’s matchup off a hot start to the season, the No. 17-ranked Stony Brook men’s lacrosse team was doused with water in a rainy matchup with the Hofstra Pride as the team lost 20-17 for its first loss of the season.
Stony Brook, ranked in the national polls for the first time in four years, dropped the contest to their Long Island rival.
“Obviously it’s not the result we wanted in a rivalry game,” head coach Anthony Gilardi said in a postgame press release. “It came down to making stops and winning face-offs. We struggled in those two areas.”
The first half saw the Pride and Seawolves in a scoring slugfest. Nearly every goal was immediately followed by a response goal by the other team, and no team took more than a two-goal lead until the middle of the third quarter.
In the third, redshirt-freshman attackman Dylan Pallonetti and redshirt-senior midfielder Wayne White combined to score three in a row to give the Seawolves the largest lead of the game at 14-11.
That lead quickly evaporated as the Pride went on a five-goal run that they would never relinquish. There was a mounted comeback that saw senior midfielder Mike McCannell score two goals in less than a minute near the end of the fourth to bring the score to 18-17. Unfortunately, two more Hofstra goals killed any momentum the Seawolves had left.
Pallonetti continues to look like a star in the making at Stony Brook, scoring five goals on the day, including two during the three-goal run that served as the Seawolves’ momentum burst of the game.
Graduate attackman Tom Haun, junior midfielder Matt Anderson and McCannell all added hat tricks. Graduate attackman Cory VanGinhoven added two in addition to White’s one.
Despite the scoring, the Seawolves defense had no answer for Hofstra’s standout senior attackman Ryan Tierney, who scored an absurd eight goals on the Seawolves, with four of them coming in the fourth quarter alone.
With a drop in the national rankings likely incoming, the Seawolves must determine how to avoid another late-game collapse in the future, or their season will be rocky down the road with teams like Syracuse and America East rival powerhouse Albany on the schedule.
“Credit to Hofstra,” Gilardi said. “They did a great job of earning high-quality shots and finishing the ball. We will watch the film, learn from it and get back to work on Monday as we open America East play.”
The team will begin conference play next week when the team travels to UMBC to play the Retrievers on Saturday, March 5.