No. 3 Duke Runs Away from High Point in Second Half
DURHAM, N.C. – Duke outscored High Point 10-2 in the second half, including 6-0 in the third quarter, to run past the High Point 17-6 in the season opener for both teams Friday in Koskinen Stadium.
Duke senior and Nike/Lacrosse Magazine Preseason Player of the Year Myles Jones led a high-powered offense with six points overall. Jack Bruckner added four goals and an assist for five points, while sophomore Justin Guterding had a goal and a career-high four assists for five points.
Deemer Class threw in four goals as the first midfield of Jones, Class and Chad Cohan finished with 12 points. Case Matheis also had a hat trick.
High Point (0-1) opened the scoring on a Dan Lomas goal at the 11:53 mark, but the lead was short-lived as senior longstick midfielder Jamie Ikeda answered eight seconds later with his first career tally to tie the score.
"I think in our sport it's about being competitive on every play," said Duke head coach John Danowski. "So if you give up a goal you have to be competitive on the faceoff, you have to fight for ground balls and if you score you have to come back and do the same thing. I think that was something we saw tonight – that our guys were going to keep playing and when you play the right way and play together it's fun."
Duke (1-0) added three more goals, two of which came from Class, to stretch the lead to 4-2 at the first break. The Blue Devils and Panthers traded goals in the second quarter before Class threw in his third of the night to send Duke into the locker room up 7-4.
The third quarter was all Blue Devils with Kyle Rowe dominating at the X and the Duke offense executing flawlessly. Case Matheis got it started at 14:23 on a man-up opportunity and Duke added five more from five different players to stretch the lead to 13-4 after three periods.
"We didn't do a good job of getting possession in the middle third of the game and had some lapses on defense and when you play a team like Duke they will take advantage," High Point head coach Jon Torpey said. "That's the first time our offensive group has played together this season, due to some injuries, so it's going to take a while for those guys to jell. I think we're younger than most people think and we're just going to have to get better."
Rowe won 4-of-6 restarts in the stanza and the Duke defense allowed just five shots and only three on frame in the 15 minutes. Rowe finished the game 13-of-20 at the faceoff X with seven ground balls.
"I think guys [on defense] see situations a little bit quicker," Danowski said. "The vocabulary is a little bit simpler for them. They are able to talk to one another, which is a big part of team defense. You can hear them talking and saying the right things to one another. Guys were sure of their assignments tonight."
Bruckner added two more to the Blue Devils' total to start the fourth quarter before High Point ended its scoring drought at 20:19 on another Lomas tally. Thomas Zenker and Bruckner finished the scoring for the Blue Devils.
Duke was outstanding on special teams, going 3-for-3 on man-up opportunities and holding High Point to just one extra man score on six man-up chances.
Danny Fowler played 55 minutes and made six stops, while Luke Aaron came in to make four saves off of the bench.
High Point senior Dan Lomas led the way for the HPU offense scoring two goals. Senior Matt Thistle added a goal while junior Dallas Bridle scored his first goal in a High Point uniform after transferring from Denver. Meanwhile, sophomores Peyton Garrett and Connor Robinson also added goals. Junior Michael LeClair and Sean Harrison were credited with the team's two assists.
Sophomore Zach Tuell registered 12 saves in goal and grabbed three ground balls in the contest. At the faceoff X, senior Jamie Piluso went 5-of-12 and led the team with four ground balls. Freshman Alex Woodall also won five faceoffs in 12 attempts.
The Blue Devils posted a 31-25 edge in ground balls while taking 46 shots to the Panthers' 37 attempts.
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