Postscript from Stony Brook vs. Virginia
Quietly, Adam Ghitelman has been putting together one of the best seasons of his career.
The junior goalkeeper was instrumental in top-seeded Virginia’s 10-9 victory over No. 8 seed Stony Brook in a NCAA Tournament quarterfinal at Stony Brook’s Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium.
Ghitelman has registered double-digit saves in 11 of the Cavaliers’ 17 contests. His 13-save performance against the Seawolves was his seventh in a row.
Ghitelman’s showing was reminiscent of his 16-save display in Virginia’s 10-6 victory over Maryland in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament final.
"I’ve built up a lot of experience in my career," he said. "I just try to stay calm out there and keep it 0-0 in my mind at all times. … It was a tough game, and I’m glad we were able to hold it down in the end."
Ghitelman will have to play just as well against No. 5 seed Duke in Saturday’s national semifinals if the Cavaliers hope to reach their first national title game since 2006. Coach Dom Starsia sounded confident that Ghitelman will continue his ways.
"Clearly, as we move forward in this season, you need your goalie to have big moments and I think Adam was one of the bright spots for us today," Starsia said. "There were times with Stony Brook, I’m sure they thought they had it, and Adam would get a big stop for us, and we’d get an opportunity going the other way."
*Stony Brook’s season ended with a 13-4 mark, setting a school record for number of wins in a season. The team also captured its first America East regular-season and tournament championships and advanced to the quarterfinals for the first time in the program’s history. But it was difficult for coach Rick Sowell to put that all in perspective after Sunday’s heart-breaking loss. "We all will have to re-live the game and certain periods of the game, and we’ll probably drive ourselves nuts with the would’ves, could’ves and should’ves," he said. "But I want to avoid that because for me, as I told the guys, the fun’s over. I’m more bummed out by that than the result of the game. The finality of it is there’s no practice tomorrow, there’s no weightlift, there’s no going to the training room. That’s the bummer for me. This team’s gone, and there will be a new team next season."
*But cupboard isn’t exactly bare with the Seawolves, who will return their entire starting attack and midfield units. The biggest losses will occur on the defensive side of the field where close defensemen Chris Gignilliat and Michael Sopko, goalkeeper Charlie Paar and long-stick midfielder Steve Waldeck will bid farewell. Still, Sowell said the bar has been set. "We don’t want it to be one-and-done," he said. "That’s not what we want. We’re not happy just to be here. We’re going to try to get back here as often as we can."
*One of the funniest comments from Sunday’s postgame conference came from junior midfielder Shamel Bratton, who returned to Long Island where he had played for nearby Huntington High School in Huntington Station, N.Y. Asked what he thought about returning to the area, Bratton said, "Actually, I was expecting a little more love from the crowd. There weren’t that many people rooting for me over the age of 12."