There are certain opponents on a team’s schedule that are supposed to provide relief from the grueling battles against division foes.
Some like to call them cupcakes, because they can sweeten a team’s record better than any delight found in the pastry shop.
For St. John’s, Stony Brook is one of the those teams.
With the Red Storm coming off their first loss of the season, a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Connecticut, Stony Brook was supposed to provide the Johnnies a chance to take out their frustrations and get back on the winning track.
And the Seawolves played that role for most of the first half, rolling over and allowing the Red Storm to dominate.
But in the end, Stony Brook would rally before St. John’s would pull out a 3-2 win yesterday afternoon at Seawolves Stadium.
Dominica Reina gave the Red Storm an early 1-0 lead in the 12th minute on her eighth goal of the season.
The Johnnies would add to the lead at 28:10 when Kaitlin Schmidt scored her eighth goal of the year for a 2-0 SJU advantage.
Two minutes later, Lauren McGrory blasted a shot in traffic in front of the Stony Brook net. Schmidt then pushed the deflected shot to Reina, who knocked it home to make the score 3-0 in favor of the Storm.
“They’re just so talented,” St. John’s Head Coach Ian Stone said about his scoring duo. “What amazes me is that these aren’t five-yard shots, these are great finishes.
“They’re fun to watch.”
The offense also got great play from Erin Henderson, whose passes were right on the money all afternoon.
“We didn’t play well as a whole,” Stone said, “but we possessed the ball enough and made some individual plays that were quite impressive.”
What should have been a runaway turned into a dogfight, which began when Kirsandra Seaton got the Seawolves on the board with 52 seconds left in the first half.
“We came out pretty strong and scored three really good goals,” Stone said, “and then took our foot off the gas.”
That goal seemed to give Stony Brook momentum, and they came out in the second half beating St. John’s in all facets of the game.
The Seawolves’ aggressive play led to a quick goal in the 47th minute by Jacqueline Anthony which cut the Red Storm lead to 3-2.
“They came out and played really hard in the second half,” Stone said. “We found it difficult to win any 50-50 balls, we found it difficult to possess the ball because they kept stepping in and being aggressive, so we conceded that second goal and basically kind of hung on from there, which shouldn’t have been the case.”
St. John’s would hang on for the victory, despite Stony Brook outshooting the Red Storm 22-10, 14-1 in the second half alone.
SJU goalie Tracey Rollings made eight saves on the afternoon.
The Red Storm return to Big East action when they travel to Boston College for a game on Oct. 4 and then return home to Belson Stadium for a game against Miami on Oct. 6.