United As Seawolves: Chase Rome and Anna Slang
Upon first interaction with sophomores Chase Rome and Anna Slang, it's hard to believe they haven't known each other their entire lives. Even they describe some of their first interactions as very natural, they were just very comfortable around each other from the very beginning. It wasn't about a West Coast bond or journeying to the opposite coast to embark on their collegiate academic and athletic careers. There was no light-bulb moment of instant friendship, just a similarity in the people they are and the pace they live at. Eight hours separate Chase's hometown of Mulino, Oregon and Cowichan Bay, British Columbia, where Anna is from. While they are from completely different places, there are a lot of similarities in the surroundings they grew up in. Overwhelmed at the thought, they take a breath to de-stress when they talk about their initial experiences in the fast-paced, no-nonsense lifestyle on Long Island. They miss, for a moment, the take-your-time, be-as-you-are attitude of the Pacific Northwest. For each other, they are a calming force for the stress of a deli order or high academic demands. They are a sense of home and support after games and big accomplishments. They are a person to laugh with as new Triller video must be made or when they are trying to make sense of Long Island lingo and botched translated sayings. Becoming teammates and friends has been a seamless process for Chase and Anna. Which is an appropriate representation of their 11-person sophomore class. From a number of different states, countries and backgrounds, they immediately embraced each other's differences while surfacing random similarities in the least likely of places. The off-the-field bond as a team deepens its roots daily, paying dividends to the togetherness and work ethic the unit plays with on the field. Despite coming to a new place neither had experienced before, they each came with a sense of familiarity. Both had originally established a relationship with head coach Brendan Faherty when he recruited them as an assistant at Washington. Chase recalls her recruiting process with Brendan, touching on the amount of trust she had in him and the way he runs his program. She had an understanding of how big a role the coaching staff would play in her life as she took a chance on committing to an East Coast school. With a similar feeling, Anna also remembers how welcomed she felt by her future teammates when she visited, as everyone took interest in getting to know her and understanding who she is. It was something she hadn't experienced anywhere else. This level of trust has only grown since arriving at Stony Brook. The pair takes pride in the fact that they have the opportunity to not just walk into something that is already built, but that they are the ones building new tradition and standards that impact the program through time. There is a constant reminder in their teammates, the way they work for each other and chase the same goals and achievements step-by-step, that this is where they belong.