Head coach Chuck Priore earned his 80th career win for Stony Brook football in impressive fashion Saturday.
The Seawolves defeated Colonial Athletic Association foe Richmond (2-2), 36-10, at home to improve to 3-1 (1-0 in conference) on the season.
“It is awesome for Stony Brook,” Priore said when asked about his 80th win. “A lot of people have partaken in those 80 wins. I appreciate it, but it is spread around to everybody, most importantly our kids.”
Priore began coaching with Stony Brook back in 2006.
Saturday’s accomplishment came in front 6,272 fans, with Stony Brook’s impressive running back tandem of Jordan Gowins and Donald Liotine leading the show. Gowins’ 192 yards (and two touchdowns) and Liotine’s 137-yard game against the Spiders marks three consecutive games in which the back each rushed for over 100 yards.
When asked if the two were the best in their conference, there was a quick response.
“Yes, I thought that going into spring,” said Liotine, a Medford native.
“It gives me energy watching Donny run,” said Gowins, who is from Bellport. “To get five yards and power forward for three more, it makes me want to go in and do the same thing.”
Senior quarterback Joe Carbone also threw for 147 yards and two touchdown passes Saturday.
“They tried to load the box, but they still couldn’t stop the run,” said Carbone. “Donny and Jordan made my job easy tonight.”
Even with the strong offensive attack, one of the biggest plays of the night came from the Seawolves defense.
Tied 3-3 in the first quarter — with Richmond surging down the field — Stony Brook junior defensive back Gavin Heslop recovered a fumble from an errant pitch and returned it 87 yards for a touchdown.
“I haven’t had a touchdown in my college career and when I saw that ball on the floor I had to scoop it,” said the overjoyed cornerback. “It was the cleanest scoop I’ve ever made. And I got it into second gear and that was that.”
That score was good for Stony Brook’s fourth defensive touchdown of the season, with all four coming in the last three games.
— Stony Brook Football (@StonyBrookFB) September 22, 2018
Although the defense allowed over 400 yards of offense to Richmond, the Spiders only entered the red zone two times.
“They moved the ball,” Priore said. “But when you make them go 70, 80 yards each time it is difficult.”
Priore and Stony Brook will be riding their three-game winning streak into next week’s matchup against the No. 20 team in the country, Villanova.
“We have good senior leadership,” Priore said. “They are very quiet Sunday through Thursday on the practice field and do their business. They really get excited to play on Saturdays and that is the mark of a good football team, the ability to be excited to play.”
The conference matchup against the Wildcats is next Saturday, Sept. 29, at 6 p.m. at LaValle Stadium in Stony Brook.
Top: Stony Brook cornerback Gavin Heslop returning a fumble recovery for a touchdown. (Credit: Jim Harrison/Stony Brook Athletics)