Preseason speculation that St. Mary’s could make some waves on the Division III national landscape appeared to gain momentum after the Seahawks opened the season with a 13-12 upset of No. 11 Roanoke on Sunday.
It’s a rousing start for St. Mary’s, but coach Chris Hasbrouck joked that it beat the alternative.
“It’s better than being 0-1,” he quipped Monday afternoon. “Obviously, it’s a very good start. I think we played hard. We really didn’t play that well. We had moments when we didn’t do very well. So it’s nice to come out against a very good opponent with a win and then knowing that we’ve got some things we need to take care of. We need to do a better job of clearing the ball. They really made us a pay a few times on our turnovers and on our failed clears. But overall, it was a great effort.”
The Seahawks have enjoyed their fair share of knocking off ranked opponents. They upended No. 3 Dickinson last season, but hadn’t beaten the Maroons since Feb. 25, 2006 – a span of six consecutive games.
“We have been able to beat some quality opponents, but we just haven’t done it consistently,” Hasbrouck said. “Roanoke has had our number. So this was for us almost about getting over that hump versus them. But certainly, we feel that it should be a confidence builder in that the things we’re doing are paying off. The hard work, the weight room, the extra shooting, those are things they believe in now, and that’s what makes you a better team overall.”
The schedule doesn’t get easier for St. Mary’s, which will meet No. 8 Dickinson Saturday at St. Paul’s High School in Brooklandville. The Seahawks haven’t been 2-0 since 2006, and Hasbrouck is wary about the players becoming content after Sunday’s victory.
“That’s something that we’re very conscious of, the letdown,” he said. “I think this team is very different from some of the ones we’ve had in the past with their confidence. … Last year, we came off a really good win against Dickinson, and – this is not taking anything away from [Franklin & Marshall, which beat St. Mary’s, 11-5] – we were just not ready to play that game. We’re going to make sure that doesn’t happen on Saturday because we really want to follow our effort up [Sunday] with a better effort.”