PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- From the opening faceoff of Saturday's game at Rutgers, Stony Brook players and coaches on the sideline could be heard yelling "Next play!"
It's become the Seawolves' rallying cry this season as they strive to focus on what's ahead rather than lingering on a mistake. Freshman attack Brody Eastwood exemplified that cry, scoring the winning goal in a 9-8 triple-overtime victory over the Scarlet Knights. The goal served as redemption for Eastwood, who was penalized for three minutes in the second quarter for using an illegal stick.
"It was in the past," Eastwood said. "I'm just trying to look forward to the next play. Our whole motto for the team this year is just focusing on the next play, and it ended up working out."
Each team squandered chances in the four-minute sudden-death extra sessions before Eastwood converted with 40 seconds remaining in the third overtime after taking a pass in the seam from Jeff Tundo.
"A little redemption," Stony Brook coach Jim Nagle said. "[Eastwood] had two opportunities before that. He's a freshman and we have a lot of young guys and they're playing through stuff. It's good to win when you're playing through those mistakes."
Stony Brook (3-2) led 3-1 after the first quarter thanks to the offensive punch provided by freshmen Challen Rogers (three goals, three assists) and Chris Hughes (two goals, one assist). Eastwood appeared to give Stony Brook a 4-1 lead early in the second quarter, but his goal was disallowed when an official checked his stick and deemed it to be illegally short.
Eastwood said he needs to be more careful with his stick, but the call left Nagle perplexed.
"We get our sticks checked before the game by the officials and they say it's OK," Nagle said. "And then if it's not, I don't really have any explanation for that."
With a man-advantage for three minutes, Rutgers (2-3) managed only one goal but turned the game's momentum, and the Scarlet Knights took a 5-4 lead into halftime.
"I thought we kind of got outside of ourselves," Nagle said.
Mike Andreassi (two goals) and Rogers scored the first two goals of the second half to give the Seawolves a 6-5 lead. But Stony Brook got sloppy with the ball late in the third quarter and the Scarlet Knights took advantage with a pair of goals to take a 7-6 edge into the fourth quarter.
Andreassi tied the score a minute into the fourth quarter and Tundo (one goal, three assists) gave Stony Brook an 8-7 lead with 5:35 left. Rutgers' Scott Klimchak (three goals, assist) forced overtime on a goal with 43 seconds remaining.