After a disappointing 2011 regular season, which was fraught with injuries, the Seawolves are making a last-minute push for an America East conference championship and a bid to the NCAA tournament.
Fifth ranked Stony Brook has one two straight games Hartford, CT for the America East conference tournament this weekend, giving new meaning to a season of setbacks. Their first game was on Saturday, March 5, against fourth ranked Albany in the quarterfinals.
Senior Chris Martin, who is averaging 7 points per game, helped his collegiate career stretch to another game, after dropping 18 on Albany to help Stony Brook edge past the Great Danes, 67-61. The win must have been sweet revenge for the Seawolves, who lost to Albany in both of their meetings during the regular season.
“I knew I didn’t play [in] a lot of games this year. I just knew that this could be my last game and that just wasn’t happening,” said Chris Martin in a post-game press conference. “I told myself; I told my team that it wasn’t happening.”
If the Albany game wasn’t evidence that Stony Brook is playing for a purpose, look no further than their colossal semifinal upset of number one seed Vermont, 69-47.
During Sunday’s game against Vermont, sophomore guard Lenny Hayes had the shooter’s touch, drowning 20 buckets while collecting 6 rebounds. It was another big win for the Seawolves, who again, had lost both regular season games against the Catamounts.
The win also means that the Seawolves will be playing in the America East finals for the first time in school history and, with a victory, Stony Brook will have an automatic 2011 NCAA tournament bid. The tournament championship is set for Saturday March 12 against Boston University.
Like their other two foes, Stony Brook hasn’t beaten Boston in their two regular season visits. But Stony Brook seems to be playing with insatiable persistency and as their fight song so illustriously proclaims, the Seawolves will be going to, fighting and maybe even winning the conference championship—a position that not many could have imagined for Stony Brook.