Stony Brook coach Steve Pikiell is not the type to dwell on a big win or a big loss. And he isn’t big on milestones either. Moving on to the next game is usually the first thing that crosses his mind after the final whistle blows.
Pikiell was the same way following Monday’s 81-62 win at UMBC. The Seawolves improved to 13-6 and 5-0 in the America East and are off to the best start in conference since joining the league 13 years ago. Pikiell, in his ninth year at the school, improved his career record to 133-132.
But he wasn’t thinking about the numbers after the win.
"It's a good start and we're happy to be 5-0, but we don't really have time to think about that much.” Pikiell said. “We have to forget what we've done and concentrate on playing a tough Vermont team this Friday."
Speaking of the Catamounts, who visit Pritchard Gymnasium on Friday for the first of two meetings, they will also enter the contest at 5-0. The winner isn’t assured of a regular-season league title, but will have a leg up the rest of the way.
Said Pikiell: "Vermont is a very good, disciplined and well-coached team. They start five talented seniors who know how to win games. They are physical, they don't beat themselves with turnovers, they play great defense and they rebound the ball. We expect it to be a tough battle, and we hope our fans come out to rock Pritchard and support us."
The Seawolves, who have won four straight, can attribute some of their recent surge to the play of guards Dave Coley, Carson Puriefoy and Ahmad Walker. The trio have put forth a consistently solid effort, helping the team win three of its last four without leading scorer Anthony Jackson.
Walker, a freshman, was named America East rookie of the week after averaging 10 points, six rebounds, three steals and two assists in wins over Binghamton and UMass-Lowell. He had five steals in the win over Binghamton.
Coley, a senior, had a career-high 22 points in the win over UMBC. Puriefoy had 14 points in both of Stony Brook’s wins over UMass-Lowell and UMBC.