The Stony Brook men’s soccer team in action on Saturday, Sept. 3. The team opened up their CAA tenure with a win against Hofstra. FRANCESCA MEVS/THE STATESMAN

A four-minute run was all the Stony Brook men’s soccer team needed to upset its Long Island rivals.

The Seawolves showed out in their first conference game of the season on Saturday, Sept. 3 with a 2-1 win over the Hofstra Pride at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium. The victory marked the first conference win as members of the CAA for Stony Brook, improving to 2-1 overall and 1-0 in conference play. 

After over 72 minutes of scoreless soccer, the Seawolves broke the game open in a span of four minutes. It started with a cross by midfielder Trausti Birgisson, which led to a header by forward Jonas Bickus. Hofstra goalkeeper Wessler Speel swatted away Bickus’s shot, as it ricocheted off of the left goalpost. Midfielder Amit Magoz was in the right place at the right time to slide in and send it into the back of the net for his first goal of the season.

Just three minutes and 55 seconds later, forward Kameron Blaise extended the lead with his second goal of the season to put the game out of reach.

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“To pick up three points, I’m really happy with that,” head coach Ryan Anatol said in an interview with The Statesman. “Overall, I’m happy with the performance.”

Magoz’s goal was the first of his NCAA career. He said he was happy with his performance in Saturday’s match.

“It was fun,” Magoz said. “I’m happy that I made all the people that came to watch happy.”

For Blaise, this was his second goal in as many games this week. He entered this season with one career goal before scoring goals in back-to-back games against Saint Peter’s and Hofstra.

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“It makes it easy when you have good players with you,” Blaise said. “They gave me two easy ones … I’ve got to thank my teammates.”

Hofstra had an opportunity to score first when it was awarded a penalty kick in the 24th minute. However, forward Ryan Carmichael’s shot veered past the left side of the net to keep the game scoreless. Opponents had made each of their last 14 penalty kicks against Stony Brook dating back to 2016.

Carmichael managed to break up the shutout with a goal in the 89th minute, but it was too little, too late.

Anatol highlighted both Magoz and Blaise in a recent interview with The Statesman, and he had high praise for the pair after the game. 

“I’m really happy with both of those guys,” Anatol said. “This afternoon we were able to bring them off the bench, so I think that speaks loudly for the team as well.”

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Goalkeeper Curtis Copenhaver was another major bright spot for the Seawolves was. After not logging any minutes during the regular season a year ago, Copenhaver has been a major contributor in the absence of goalkeeper Edmond Kaiser. Copenhaver tallied three saves in the contest, all of which were crucial to his team. The highlight of his day came in the 53rd minute when he clawed away a header by Hofstra defender Mason Tatafu to keep the game scoreless.

“Curtis is the starting goalkeeper right now,” Anatol said. “I tell the guys all the time, ‘You need to be ready for your opportunity,’ and Curtis has done that.”

Hofstra entered the season as the unanimous favorites to win the CAA and had not lost to Stony Brook since Sept. 18, 2019.

“Long Island is red now,” Blaise said. “It’s been blue for a little bit, but we’re turning it back to red.”

The Seawolves will travel to New York City on Tuesday, Sept. 6 to take on the Columbia Lions at 7 p.m. They will look to start 3-1 for the second straight year, as they beat Columbia 1-0 last year on the same day. 

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