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Isaiah White rushes for 2 TDs to pace Stony Brook over Wagner

Isaiah White of Stony Brook finds a hole

Isaiah White of Stony Brook finds a hole in the Bryant defense during the first half of their season opener against Bryant University at Lavalle Stadium on Thursday, August 29, 2019. Credit: Peter Frutkoff

Stony Brook football flew into Utah last Friday, were destroyed by Utah State the next day, and returned to Long Island at 6 a.m. the next morning. Monday was practice.

“They came out with purpose,” coach Chuck Priore said. “We came to practice and honestly it was as if they had a day off the day before ... They were excited about getting rid of that bad taste in their mouth.”

Consider that taste completely washed out. Career days by Isaiah White and Tyquell Fields dominated the day for the Seawolves (2-1), as they dismantled Wagner, 26-10, at LaValle Stadium on Saturday night. White, who spent the last three years as a linebacker, had a career-high 131 yards on 31 carries, while Fields went 11-for-19 for 282 yards, the most passing yards for a Stony Brook quarterback since November 2013. It was their 11th straight win at home.

Priore said that his quarterback, who missed the week of practice prior to the Utah State game, is starting to look comfortable, and it’s making all the difference.

“I think he had more fun out there,” Priore said.

Added Fields: “I was really determined this week … (I was focused on) being relaxed and handling business.”

The Seawolves scored on their opening drive but could have walked away with more. Explosive rushes by Fields (20 yards) and White (13 yards) helped march Stony Brook to a first down at the Wagner 15-yard line. But a false start and a suddenly stifling red-zone defense combined to stall Stony Brook at the 6, as they settled for Nick Courtney’s 24-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead with 7:08 left in the first quarter.

Stony Brook, though, got another crack at it about a minute later, when Justin Burns forced a fumble on Dymitri McKenzie’s carry. Burns recovered the ball at the Stony Brook 40, sparking an 11-play, 60-yard drive that culminated in Fields’ 26-yard pass to Jean Constant in the end zone, putting the Seawolves up 10-0 with 13:49 left in the second quarter.

Stony Brook went up 13-0 by halftime, thanks to Courtney’s 21-yard field goal with 3:32 to go — facilitated by Fields’ pass to Andrew Trent, who went up to haul it in, broke out of one tackle, spun out of another and landed on the 19-yard line. It was a 21-yard pass.

Wagner was finally able to get on the board in the third quarter, the beneficiary of a shortened field thanks to an 8-yard punt by Stony Brook, which was tipped by Wagner’s Jacque Cook. The Seahawks started on the Stony Brook 20 and were able to advance just 1 yard, ending in Eric Sylvester’s 36-yard field goal.

Burns had five total tackles, as the Stony Brook defense shut down Wagner’s run game (17 yards on 12 attempts).

The Seawolves responded on the next drive: Fields hit Delante Hellams on a post route for a 46-yard pass, and later White scored on a 9-yard carry to put Stony Brook up 20-3.

White scored again with 4:57 to go. This time, Fields passed to Andrew Trent, who brought it down near the Stony Brook 40, broke an open-field tackle and cruised to the Wagner 7 for an 82-yard play. White took it from there, getting sprung through a hole at left guard for a 7-yard touchdown to open up a 26-3 lead.

Wagner scored on a 4-yard pass from Christian Alexander-Stevens to Joshua DeCambre with 8:42 left in the game.

“It’s just about being resilient, coming back after adversity (and) conflict,” White said. “How do we respond? ... We keep pushing, keep fighting.”

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