Duke edges Virginia for trip to final

  • Duke's Sam Payton dives and tries to check the ball from the stick of Virginia's Bray Malphrus in the first half. Duke's Max Quinzani scored the game-winning goal with 12 seconds left in the fourth quarter to send the Blue Devils to the NCAA lacrosse final vs. Notre Dame.
Duke's Sam Payton dives and tries to check the ball from… (Baltimore Sun photo by Lloyd…)
May 29, 2010|By Baltimore Sun reporter

The road to redemption came to an abrupt and unfulfilling end for the Virginia men's lacrosse team.

The top-seeded Cavaliers could not protect a three-goal lead in the third quarter, and senior attackman Max Quinzani's goal with 12 seconds left in the fourth quarter lifted No. 5 seed Duke to a 14-13 victory in a NCAA Tournament semifinal at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore Saturday night.

The Blue Devils (15-4) earned a berth in the championship final against unseeded Notre Dame (10-6) on Monday at 3:30 p.m. and will returned to the title game for the first time since 2007.

An announced attendance of 44,389 that seemed to support a Virginia team playing under the weight of the slaying of women's lacrosse player Yeardley Love and homicide charges against men's player George Huguely watched both teams trade momentum in the second half.

The Cavaliers (16-2) padded a two-goal cushion at halftime when sophomore attackman Chris Bocklet converted a feed from junior midfielder Rhamel Bratton just 71 seconds into the third quarter.

But Duke reeled off seven unanswered goals over a stretch of 16 minutes, 38 seconds spanning the third and fourth quarters to assume a 12-8 advantage with 12:11 left in regulation.

Virginia went on a run of its own as Bratton, Bocklet and senior midfielder Brian Carroll scored in a 3:41 span to trim the deficit to one with 6:55 left.

Junior attackman Zach Howell's goal with 4:27 remaining gave the Blue Devils a two-goal lead, but sophomore attackman Steele Stanwick and Carroll scored within 29 seconds of each other to knot the score at 13 with 1:21 remaining.

After a Duke win on the face-off and a timeout, fifth-year senior attackman Ned Crotty found Quinzani in the high slot, and he turned and buried the ball behind junior goalkeeper Adam Ghitelman.

Duke never led in the first half and hit the post at least three times. What was even more grating was that the Blue Devils failed to clear the ball on four occasions. They wilted under the pressure of the Cavaliers' suffocating ride, which is something Duke usually applies to opponents.

The Blue Devils tied the score at 5 when senior midfielder Jonathan Livadas connected with senior attackman Will McKee for the second time in the game with 5:45 left in the second quarter. But after Virginia junior goalkeeper Adam Ghitelman stoned senior midfielder Steve Schoeffel on a wrap-around attempt, the Cavaliers got back-to-back goals from midfielder Colin Briggs and Carroll to enjoy a 7-5 lead at halftime.

Sophomore midfielder Justin Turri led Duke with three goals and one assist, and Quinzani scored four times after being shut out in the first half. Howell added two goals and one assist.

Stanwick led all scorers with five points on three goals and two assists. Bocklet scored four times.

Notes: Saturday's paid attendance was 44,238. That's the sixth-best crowd for semifinals behind 2007 (51,719), 2006 (49,552), 2008 (48,224), 2004 (46,923) and 2005 (45,275). Former NFL player and current NFL on Fox analyst Howie Long attended the second semifinal between Duke and Virginia. His son Howie Long Jr. is a freshman defenseman for the Cavaliers. Monday's contest will conclude with one school winning its first national championship. It's the first time two schools will compete for their first title since 1973 when Johns Hopkins and Maryland met.

edward.lee@baltsun.com

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