The men’s lacrosse team on Feb. 22, 2020 after their game against Brown. The team won against the NJIT Highlanders on April 10. EMMA HARRIS/STATESMAN FILE

In their second matchup of the season, the Stony Brook men’s lacrosse team defeated the NJIT Highlanders by a final score of 12-8 on the road. Junior midfielder Matt Anderson led the Seawolves with a career-high four goals, including a decisive fourth quarter shot that broke an 8-8 tie.

“It was exciting for sure,” Anderson said in a postgame press release. “Mike McCannell made an amazing pass, and I just had to do the easy part. Coach Gilardi challenged us at halftime and I think we really stepped up.”

Despite their win earlier in the season over the Highlanders, the Seawolves found themselves in a tough spot late in the third quarter down 8-6 against an NJIT team with just one win this season. Needing a spark, redshirt-freshman attacker Dylan Pallonetti found the net for the first time to bring the score back to within one before he scored again 71 seconds later on a man-up to tie the game. His two goals extended his scoring streak to ten games.

Senior midfielder Mike McCannell assisted four goals in the fourth quarter and added a score of his own with five minutes left to play to finish with a career-high six points. Graduate midfielder Chris Pickel Jr. added two goals. 

“We didn’t come out with enough energy in the first half, but we regrouped as a unit and were able to get the energy that we needed for the second half and execute our game plan,” McCannell said. “We just stuck to our strategy and moved the ball well in the fourth, which opened up opportunities, especially on man-up. We were able to capitalize to finish off the game.”

Head coach Anthony Gilardi seemed pleased with his team’s effort in the face of their early adversity.

“We did a good job of finding a way to win,” he said. “The guys stuck together and executed in the fourth when we needed them. Mike McCannell played really well. He dodged hard and was great orchestrating our man-up.”

Now 7-3 (and 5-1 against AE opponents), the Seawolves are trending upwards on the wave of a five-game winning streak that they hope to ride next weekend when they face the Binghamton Bearcats.

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