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Men’s Lacrosse

Notre Dame struggles against Duke without Bryan Costabile, Brendan Gleason

| Tuesday, April 10, 2018

No. 15 Notre Dame fell 8-2 to No. 5 Duke in a nationally televised ACC home game at Arlotta Stadium on Saturday.

It was the first time these two teams have met since the ACC tournament last season, when Notre Dame (5-4, 1-2 ACC) defeated Duke (10-2, 2-1 ACC) 7-6 in the semifinals.

Notre Dame was without two of its top offensive players, sophomore midfielder Bryan Costabile and junior attack Brendan Gleason, who both missed the game due to undisclosed injuries.

The Irish got off to a fast start in the contest, as sophomore attack Brian Willetts scored his ninth goal of the season just 1:01 into the game to give Notre Dame the early 1-0 lead. Less than two minutes later, however, Duke answered with a goal by freshman attack Joe Robertson to tie the score 1-1.

The next 10 minutes were filled with back and forth action, but none of the scoring opportunities resulted in goals. Duke took two penalties during that stretch, but Notre Dame was unable to capitalize on the man-up opportunities.

The momentum swung in Duke’s favor late in the first quarter, however. With 2:57 left in the opening frame, Blue Devils graduate student attack Peter Conley put the Blue Devils ahead 2-1 with his 21st goal of the season. The Irish were unable to get out of the quarter without allowing further damage either, as Blue Devils sophomore midfielder Kevin Quigley buried a shot with one second left on the clock to give Duke a 3-1 lead heading into the second.

Duke’s momentum from the end of the first period continued into the second quarter, as senior attack Justin Guterding scored on a man-up opportunity to give the Blue Devils a 4-1 advantage with 11:16 left in the first half.

Chris Collins | The Observer
Irish senior midfielder Pierre Byrne attempts to dodge a Blue Devils defender during Notre Dame’s 8-2 loss to Duke on Saturday at Arlotta Stadium.

After going scoreless for more than 26 minutes, the Irish eventually got on the scoreboard again, as senior midfielder Pierre Byrne scored his fifth goal of the season to cut the Duke lead to two with 2:48 left in the half.

Notre Dame got one more opportunity to score before the half ended when Blue Devils junior midfielder John Prendergast received a penalty with 1:55 remaining. The Irish failed to score on the man-up chance, however, and the score went to half at 4-2. In the first half, Notre Dame freshman goaltender Matt Schmidt had five saves on nine shots against, while Duke graduate student goalie Danny Fowler finished with two saves on just four shots faced.

The second half, however, was dominated by Duke.

It took Duke less than five minutes to get back on the board in the second half, as Sean Lowrie scored his 10th goal of the season. The junior midfielder then added another goal to his tally four minutes later to give Duke a 6-2 advantage with 6:03 left in the third.

Notre Dame finished the third quarter without recording a shot on goal and just three shots total.

In the fourth quarter, Guterding added another goal to make it 7-2 in favor of Duke. Then, with 2:35 left in regulation, Blue Devils sophomore attack Joey Manown put his team up 8-2 with his eighth goal of the season, and that would be the final score of the game. Schmidt finished with six saves on 14 shots on goal, while Fowler stopped four of the just six shots on goal he faced.

Notre Dame will be back in action Wednesday when the team travels to Milwaukee for a road contest with Marquette.

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