Seawolves Claim Share Of NEC Title With Last Minute 23-21 Win Over Central Connecticut

Coach Kornhauser is carried off the field after capturing Stony Brook's first-ever NEC title
 
Coach Kornhauser is carried off the field after capturing Stony Brook's first-ever NEC title
 
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Nov. 12, 2005

Final Stats |  Photo Gallery

Stony Brook, N.Y. - Josh Dudash connected with Lynell Suggs on a 10-yard fade pass with 31 seconds to go to lift Stony Brook to a thrilling 23-21 victory over Central Connecticut State Saturday afternoon at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium. With the win the Seawolves earn a share of the Northeast Conference Championship with CCSU for the first NEC championship in school history in head coach Sam Kornhauser's final home game after 22 years at the helm of the Stony Brook football program.

Trailing 21-17 with 3:38 remaining in the contest, the Seawolves (6-4, 5-2 NEC) began the game-winning drive on their own 4-yard line. Dudash led SB's surge down the field, connecting on 6-of-8 passes for 92 yards, including a 48-yard reception by Josh Anderson. Later in the drive, Dudash scrambled to his left and found Scott Kubrak on a beautiful touch pass down the left sideline that set Stony Brook up with first-and-goal at the CCSU 9-yard line. Two plays later, the sophomore quarterback capped the 10-play, 96-yard drive with the 10-yard touchdown pass to Suggs with just over 30 seconds to play, sending the crowd of 3,209 into a frenzy.

On the Blue Devils' (7-4, 5-2 NEC) final drive, they found themselves on their own 43 with three seconds to go. Aubrey Norris heaved a hail-mary pass intended for Josh Roth, but it was batted down by Dan Michitsch at the SB 5-yard line as time expired to seal the victory.

The Seawolves douse Coach K with water as time runs out


When it was over, Kornhauser was doused with water as the fans stormed the field, mobbing the Seawolves in celebration of their first-ever title. Part of the thousands in attendance were over 175 former coaches and players who came out to show support for Coach K in his final home game.

In the first half, it seemed as if the Seawolves were in control of the game. After a 21-yard field goal by Matt Weeks, Stony Brook had a 10-0 lead with 17 seconds remaining.

Following the kickoff, CCSU stunned the Seawolves as Norris hit Roth on a 15-yard out play that he turned into a 67-yard touchdown down the far sideline, eluding several Seawolves along the way. Derek Pearson added the extra point and Stony Brook led 10-7 at the break.

The Blue Devils struck for another big play late in the third quarter when SB was driving for a score. Nigel Monge stripped Assad Hafiz of the ball at the CCSU 16-yard line and Anthony Wilson scooped it up at the 23 and dashed 77 yards for the score. Pearson nailed the extra point to put CCSU up 14-10.

Stony Brook regained the lead thanks to a good bounce. Sean McGinty's punt deflected off Wilson and was recovered by Michitsch at the CCSU 1-yard line. One play later, Dudash plunged in from a yard out and Weeks hit the extra point to put the Seawolves back up, 17-14, with 40 seconds left in the third quarter.

The visitors again went in front midway through the fourth quarter, marching down the field with a seven-play, 74-yard scoring drive capped by a Norris 7-yard pass to Steve Bergeski. Pearson added the extra point to make it 21-17 with 8:09 remaining in the contest.

Dudash went 22-of-31 for 241 yards and one touchdown. Anderson caught eight passes for 115 yards, while Joe Tarasiewicz made seven catches for 62 yards and Rod Williams finished with 109 yards on 25 carries and a touchdown. Mike Mounter led the SB defense with eight tackles, while Michitsch recovered two fumbles and added four tackles.

Norris went 10-for-17 for 151 yards and two scores for the Blue Devils. Roth caught three passes for 94 yards and a TD, while Jo Jo Freeman ran for 58 yards on 13 carries. Coree Tucker tallied a game-high 14 tackles and a sack, while Brian Sullivan posted 10 tackles and a sack.

The Seawolves close out their 2005 campaign on Saturday when they travel to Poughkeepsie, N.Y., to take on Marist in a non-conference matchup. Kick-off is set for 1:00 p.m.