POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- The Stony Brook roster gives the impression of an experienced group. But in reality, the Seawolves took the court for Friday night's season opener at Marist with a number of question marks.
Aside from senior forward Tommy Brenton and junior guard Dave Coley, Stony Brook featured numerous players either filling expanded roles or making their collegiate debuts.
It was far from perfect, but coach Steve Pikiell received some encouraging answers in the Seawolves' 60-57 win over Marist at the McCann Center.
"There's a lot of things I like," he said. "I like our depth, I like that our young guys played. We're not there yet, but good win to go on the road and beat a good Marist team."
Stony Brook's 38-28 lead was a distant memory by the time Brenton was called for an offensive foul with 45 seconds left while setting a screen in the backcourt. Trailing 58-57, Marist had a chance to take the lead. But Stony Brook's Anthony Mayo, a 6-9 sophomore who appeared in only one game last season because of a knee injury, came up with a crucial block on Devin Price's drive.
"Huge play," Brenton said. "I called him the 'Brick Wall' when he did that. We kind of force our guys toward him and let him make the plays."
Coley hit two free throws to conclude the scoring, although Marist got two quality looks in the final eight seconds on potential tying three-pointers.
Coley, the top returning scorer from last season, had 13 points, although he shot only 4-for-12 from the field. "It's just a matter of sticking with it," he said. "I wasn't good throughout the game, but I just stuck with it and grinded."
Anthony Jackson also scored 13 points, shooting 3-for-4 from three-point range. Brenton produced a typically well-rounded stat line with 12 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.
The Seawolves have their home opener at 4 p.m. Sunday against Division III Mount Ida and then travel to play Rider at 6 a.m. Tuesday as part of ESPN's tip-off marathon. Three games in 81 hours should give Pikiell a much clearer view of his team.