No. 3 Stony Brook walked onto the court as a clear underdog against No. 1 Pierson/Bridgehampton, which won their two regular-season meetings. Then Stony Brook flipped that script in the Suffolk Class C girls volleyball final.
Stony Brook, following a winless 2015 season, pulled off a seemingly improbable 3-2 comeback (24-26, 19-25, 25-17, 25-21, 27-25) Monday night at Suffolk CC-Brentwood. It was the program’s first title ever.
“I’m so excited,” junior Samantha Peterson said. “We came from a season last year where we won no games.”
Elizabeth Robbins, Hannah Detwiler and Peterson led the way for Stony Brook (8-4). Robbins recorded seven aces and six kills, and Detwiler added six kills. Peterson tallied 33 assists.
Stony Brook will face the winner of Tuesday night’s Nassau Class C final between Carle Place and East Rockaway for the Long Island Class C championship Saturday at SUNY Old Westbury.
After Pierson/Bridgehampton (9-2) tied the fourth set at 19, Stony Brook scored four consecutive points before taking the set. Stony Brook appeared to be on the brink of victory following a 19-10 start to the final set, but Pierson/Bridgehampton came roaring back to take a 22-20 lead before Stony Brook regained the lead at 26-25.
Despite all the adversity Stony Brook encountered throughout the match, Det wiler said the players continued to remain positive and lean on each other.
When asked about the turning point, Detwiler said: “Definitely the third set. When we got in the huddle, we said we knew what we had to do to get it done.”
For coach Stan Winston, this victory was as sweet as it gets. After being diagnosed with cancer in 2010, Winston was declared cancer-free a year and a half ago and told administrators this past July he was ready to resume his role as coach.
“This was supposed to be a two-year plan,” Winston said. “But I’ll take it a year early. From worst to first in the county, this is amazing. Wow.’’