The Duke Blue Devils held off a late Virginia rally and eventual tie. A goal by Max Quinzani with 12 seconds left on the clock proved the difference to send Duke to Monday's national championship game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
BALTIMORE, Md.- Duke University senior Max Quinzani delivered the game-winning goal with 12 seconds remaining as the Blue Devils upset top-ranked Virginia, 14-13, in front of 44,389 fans at the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Semifinals this evening at M&T Bank Stadium. The fifth-seeded Blue Devils advance to Monday's NCAA Championship game against Notre Dame on May 31 at 3:30 p.m.
"We ended up going in front of the goal, playing a little cat and mouse - [Justin Turri] and [Adam] Ghitelman. I came around, wasn't able to get a shot, but was able to get my hands free," senior Ned Crotty said. "Obviously, I like going to Max, so I was looking at the field, I saw him make a cut and kind of threw it behind the guy's head. And Max was there just in time and stuck it."
Quinzani finished with four goals while sophomore midfielder Justin Turri tied a career high with three scores on the night. Duke had difficulty establishing an offensive rhythm early, but went on a 7-0 scoring run late in the third quarter to garner its first win over ACC foe Virginia in the NCAA Tournament. The Blue Devils improve to 15-4 on the season and advance to the program's third NCAA Championship game and second under head coach John Danowski.
"We loved the way the University of Virginia competed for 60 minutes, and our hats certainly are off to those guys," Danowski said. "There was a time in the end of the third quarter, early in the fourth quarter, where maybe they were going to get a little tired. And their kids fought valiantly and fought hard, and played just tremendously in that fourth quarter."
Virginia and Duke traded goals throughout much of the first half, with the Cavaliers taking a 7-5 lead into the locker room. The Cavaliers' largest lead in the game was 8-5 early in the third quarter before the Blue Devils put together their crucial seven-goal run.
The Blue Devils twice tied the game in the opening half, but final second goals by Virginia in both the first and second quarters kept the Cavaliers in front for much of the 30 minutes. It was Duke's extra-man offense in the first half that kept the Blue Devils in the game, as three of the five goals came on man-up opportunities.
With a two-goal lead heading into the third quarter, the Cavaliers grabbed their largest lead of the game, 8-5, 1:11 into the third quarter with a goal from Chris Bocklet.
After being held scoreless for the previous 11:46, Quinzani pulled the Blue Devils back to within two with an unsettled goal at the 8:59 mark. The tally was his 65th of the year and pushed his point streak to 65 games.
That goal from Quinzani sparked a seven-goal run from the Blue Devils over the next 18:13 to put Duke ahead 12-8 lead midway through the fourth quarter.
"I thought Max [Quinzani's] goal, I think it was goal number six, gave us a lot of enthusiasm," Danowski said. "From then on, I thought it was just a battle. It was a pleasure sometimes just to stand there and watch these guys go after it. I was very proud of our kids for playing for 60 minutes and playing hard and just being tough-minded and playing hard physically."
Howell followed Quinzani's score to make it a one-goal game with a highlight-reel score at the 5:35 mark and senior Ned Crotty tied the contest for the third time of the evening just over two minutes later. Quinzani and Crotty connected 1:33 later to give Duke its first lead of the game, 9-8 at the end of the third quarter.
The Blue Devil offense continued to fire on all cylinders in the early minutes of the fourth quarter as Duke added three more goals in the first 2:49 for a 12-8 advantage. Sophomore CJ Costabile tallied his third goal of the year 13 seconds into the frame and Turri and Quinzani added two more goals for the four-goal lead with 12:11 to play in the fourth quarter.
Trailing 12-8 early in the fourth quarter, Virginia began to mount its comeback effort. After being held scoreless for 18:13, the Cavaliers put together a 3-0 run over a span of 3:41 to pull back within one at, 12-11. Rhamel Bratton started the run at the 10:36 mark and Bocklet and Brian Carroll added two more goals.
The Blue Devils stopped the Virginia spurt as Howell and senior Steve Schoeffel connected to make it a 13-11 score at the 4:27 mark. However, the Cavaliers answered with back-to-back goals by Stanwick and Carroll to tie the game at 13 with less than two minutes remaining.
Costabile won a critical faceoff for Duke, and Crotty again found Quinzani for the game-winning goal with 12 seconds remaining. The Cavaliers had an opportunity to tie the game, taking possession on a Duke turnover, but a turnover of their own secured the Blue Devils' victory as the final seconds ticked off the clock.
Quinzani and Turri led all Duke scorers with four points each as Quinzani also recorded a team-best four goals. Howell and Crotty added three points each as the Blue Devils scored on four out of five extra-man opportunities. Duke had the advantage at the faceoff X, where senior Sam Payton led the way, going 15-for-23 with six ground balls. Duke also received key play from rookie Dan Wigrizer, who made seven saves in goal.
Virginia ends the 2010 campaign with a final record of 16-2. Their only losses came against Duke, including tonight's NCAA semifinal contest and a 13-9 Duke victory on April 17 in Charlottesville.
The Blue Devils improve to 19-13 all-time in NCAA Tournament play, and move on to a matchup with No. 20 Notre Dame in Monday's NCAA Championship game. It will mark the program's third appearance in the championship game and gives the Blue Devils a chance to capture their first NCAA title in men's lacrosse.
Notes: Max Quinzani pushed his scoring streak to 65 games ... Quinzani has registered at least three goals in 15 games this season and in 37 times in his career ... With three goals, Quinzani climbed to third in the NCAA records book in career goals in NCAA Tournament games with 33 ... Quinzani also broke the Duke career record for NCAA Tournament games with at least one goal at 12, surpassing Matt Danowski's 11 ... Head Coach John Danowski will appear in his second NCAA Championship game, last appearing in 2007 against Johns Hopkins ... Danowski is 10-3 in NCAA Tournament action at Duke and 14-11 overall ... The Blue Devil seniors are 11-3 all-time in NCAA Tournament play.
Duke vs. Virginia Postgame Quotes
Virginia Head Coach Dom Starsia
Opening statement on the loss in the NCAA semifinal game
“These are hard when they end like this. It’s been a really extraordinary spring in so many different ways. I give credit to Duke and Coach Danowski and his group first and foremost. They played an inspired game, especially in the second half, they were really flying around. I am so proud of so many people. I don’t really know where to begin. The fact that we played hard and came back and had a chance to roll over and didn’t. I probably wouldn’t have expected anything less. The final score may be the least important part of what has transpired here throughout the spring. The final score wasn’t what we hoped for, but it doesn’t diminish who we are and what they battled through and the men that they are. I thought it was a great game, it wasn’t our cleanest game. They have a way to turn it into an unsettled scrum and they can make some spectacular plays when the ball is flying around.”
On the series with Duke the last few seasons
“We don’t run into a lot of teams that are as athletic as we are. They may even be more athletic at the end of the day. There is a period of time since 2005 when this really started; they went from (Matt) Danowski and (Zach) Greer to (Ned) Crotty and (Max) Quinzani, who are probably the top seven or eight attackmen that have played the game in the last 20 years. They’ve just been very talented and there not a lot of teams that can attack us up and down the field. They are one of the teams that can.”
On the last 30 seconds of the game
“We had the timeout to get organized on defense. We thought they might come with (Ned) Crotty. Kenny (Clausen) got hung up around the goal. I thought he did a nice job of playing that. We were able to reengage Crotty, and I thought Kenny kind of stopped him and pushed him wide. Crotty is such a threat. What makes him so dangerous is that he can come around and score or he can find the open man and he found his running partner (Max) Quinzani and he drills the ball. We get the ball back, we set up a full field eight second play, and I don’t know what Brian was thinking about exactly. He was supposed to attack the ball, he ran over the line, and we were off-sides.”
On finishing this season tonight
“I think it was really important. We’ve talked a lot about these last few weeks. I think the ability to stay together helped us all and I think it helped the (UVA) women (team) that we were able to stay together, that they were with us until the past week. These young people were able to support each other. In the end, it would have been so much easier if we won.”
On the faceoff battle
“I thought going in that it would be the difference in the game, and maybe ultimately it was. I never thought that we got a handle on it. We were able to win a couple draws but we weren’t able to establish ourselves in the faceoff [battle] like we did in the first game.I think Duke has something to do with that.”
Virginia sophomore attackman Steele Stanwick
On the comeback and the emotion of the game
“We could have rolled over there, and I’m sure a lot of people thought we were going too. I think it just shows a lot of character for our team and the kind of people this team is made up of.”
On the third quarter in which Duke was in control
“I thought we moved the ball pretty well, but we were settling a little bit, not for good shots, but just okay shots, and that kind of hurt us there. Duke is a great team and they deserve all of the credit. We knew they were going to make a run there, and I am just proud that we bounced back.”
Virginia sophomore attackman Chris Bocklet
On the third quarter when Duke was in control
“In the third quarter, sometimes the ball doesn’t go your way, and you could tell whoever was on the faceoff was going their hardest, and fighting for the ball and wanted it. But, Duke made some good plays. They are great and that is one thing they are good at is groundballs in the middle of the field, and sometimes it doesn’t always go your way.
Virginia sophomore attackman Chris Bocklet
On the only two losses of the year being to Duke
“They are a well coached team and they have tons of weapons offensively. Their poles are just very good and they all can handle the ball which is such a threat when they are coming down the field. All-around they are just a good team. We play a lot of good teams during the year and sometimes one team may just have your number.”
Duke coach John Danowski
Opening statement on facing Virginia
“We love the way University of Virginia competed for 60 minutes. Our hats are off to those guys. Their kids fought valiantly and hard. They played tremendously in that fourth quarter.”
Overall thoughts about the NCAA semifinal game
“We were disappointed in our first half and our inability to clear the ball. I thought it was a battle. It was just a pleasure to stand there and watch those guys go after it. I was very proud of our kids for playing hard physically.”
Final Four weekend mental toughness and close games
“We have athletes and we want to let them play and let them run. I think that was typical ACC lacrosse [tonight] whether it is North Carolina, Maryland or Virginia. Since I have been in the ACC for four years we have phenomenal athletes that have great skills. Games tend to be up-and-down and are battles for 60 minutes.”
What are the key differences now then the beginning of the season
“Losing to Notre Dame for one. When they beat us at our place the score wasn’t even close to what the game might indicate. It was a gut check for everybody. Duke has a bulls eye on its chest. We are learning what it feels like to play at Hopkins or to play football at Notre Dame. When you lose it is a great opportunity to see what you are doing. That has been one of the great motivators for us.”
The play of Ned Crotty and Max Quinzani
“Tonight might have been a little bit more storybook. We certainly didn’t design it for Ned to throw it to Max. We would have been delighted for anybody to catch it and throw it in at that point. The way it worked out today was special because those kids have worked so hard.”
Duke senior attackman Ned Crotty
On assisting Max Quinzani on the game-winning goal
“I came around and I wasn’t able to get a shot but I was able to get my hands free. Obviously, I like throwing to Max and saw him make a cut. I locked eyes with Max, threw it behind the guy’s head and Max was there just in time and stuck it.”
On the first half
“We said it couldn’t have been any worse than that. We just put it behind us. We knew we could do it. The effort was always there but we just needed to do like coach said; ‘just start catching and throwing.”
On playing an unseeded team in the finals:
“The numbers that are put next to the teams are done by the people who pick them. They are one of the 16 best teams in the country and they are now one of the two best teams in the country. The fact that they are unseeded is definitely not in any way a factor to us.”
Duke senior attackman Max Quinzani
On his relationship with Ned Crotty:
“I have all the confidence in him and we let him do it. I tell him all the time that if you throw it, at least you know I’m going to catch it and something good is going to happen.
|Steele Stanwick||(3, 2)|
|Chris Bocklet||(4, 0)|
|Brian Carroll||(3, 1)|
|Rhamel Bratton||(1, 1)|
|Colin Briggs||(1, 1)|
|Matt Kugler||(0, 1)|
|Mike Thompson||(0, 1)|
|Chris Lapierre||(0, 1)|
|Shamel Bratton||(1, 0)|
|Matt White||(0, 1)|
|Adam Ghitelman||8 (0.364)|