Losing at home to first-place Albany on Thursday was a bitter pill to swallow for the Stony Brook women’s team, especially since they led the Great Danes 22-14 at the break.
But Seawolves coach Beth O’Boyle stayed upbeat following her team’s 66-51 loss to the Great Danes.
O’Boyle is convinced it was a game the Seawolves (15-6, 6-2 America East) could have won. It was the first time the Great Danes (18-3, 8-0), who shot just 24 percent from the field the first half, trailed at halftime against an America East team this season.
You’d be hard pressed to find a Stony Brook player or coach willing to accept kudos for any moral victories, but no one can deny the Seawolves proved they could be a threat to the Great Danes.
“I thought defensively we played well enough to win the game,” O’Boyle told WUSB radio. “We just needed to hit more shots down the stretch.”
That may sound like typical coach speak, but what O’Boyle said was on point. The Seawolves struggled to score, especially down the stretch. It didn’t help that leading scorer Sabre Proctor played limited minutes due to foul trouble. She eventually fouled out after 24 minutes, finishing with just six points.
The season doesn’t just revolve around Albany, though.
Although the Seawolves face the Great Danes in their regular season finale in what could be a battle for the conference title, they need to be for a trip to Hartford on Sunday.
The Hawks (8-13, 5-3) started slow, losing eight of their first nine games. They’ve gotten hot recently, winning four straight.
“It’s one game, obviously a big one,“ O’Boyle said of Albany. “But there’s a lot more basketball left.”
Stony Brook’s current situation is a far cry from where the program once was.
The Seawolves were picked to finished third in this season’s preseason coaches poll. Two years ago, O’Boyle’s first year on the job, Stony Brook went 4-26. Last season the Seawolves went 14-16, completing one of the best turnarounds in the country.