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April 22, 2011
DURHAM, N.C. – Top-seeded Duke outscored Virginia 7-1 in the second quarter on the way to a 19-10 victory on Friday in the semifinals of the 2011 Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Lacrosse Championship at Koskinen Stadium.
The host Blue Devils (11-4) advanced to Sunday afternoon’s championship game against third-seeded Maryland (9-3). The Terrapins advanced with a 7-6 victory over second-seeded North Carolina in Friday’s first semifinal.
Midfielder Justin Turri started Duke’s comeback from an early 4-2 deficit with a goal three seconds before the first quarter ended. At halftime, the Blue Devils had a 10-5 lead.
Jordan Wolf and David Lawson scored four goals each for Duke, which won the teams’ regular-season meeting 13-11 last weekend in Durham.
Colin Briggs had two goals and three assists for Virginia (8-5), and Matt White added three goals.
Under coach John Danowski, Duke owns a 4-1 ACC Tournament record against Virginia, but Danowski said past results were not a predictor of future success.
“You have to take each game as a single event,” he said. “We’re honored to have the chance to host this tournament. Hosting it, you feel a little extra pressure, but we’re excited and honored to be in the championship.” Duke had 38 ground balls to 27 for Virginia, including a 13-2 edge in the second quarter.
“We just couldn’t get the ball cleared in the second quarter,” Virginia coach Dom Starsia said. “We were scrambling a little bit in the defensive end.”
Against Maryland on Sunday, the Blue Devils will be playing for their seventh ACC Tournament title and fifth since 2001.
Sunday’s 3:30 p.m. championship game will be televised by FOX Sports.
Duke head coach John Danowski
Opening Statement: “We are extremely honored to have the opportunity to participate in the championship game on Sunday. We feel a little a bit of extra pressure since we are hosting, but we are very excited and very honored to be able to play on Sunday.”
On playing with extra confidence tonight compared to last week: “No. I think you have to take every game in the season as a single event. I can’t explain the overall record and the overall concept, but tonight we had a week to prepare and get better at the things that we needed to get better at. I thought that we did better than last week; we did improve.”
Duke freshman attackman Jordan Wolf
On playing during the second quarter with a lead: “It was a really good experience. It was fun playing a team like Virginia with a great lacrosse history. It was just a great experience with everything just clicking at that time.”
Virginia head coach Dom Starsia
On turning things around for the NCAA tournament: “Credit to Duke first and foremost. I thought they played really well. We never had the ball in the second quarter. I thought we came out and played and we just couldn’t get the ball cleared, never had the ball, never possessed the ball in the second quarter. We were scrambling a bit at the defensive end of the field and we wanted to come out and play some man today and I don’t think it was the settled defense as much as it was us turning the ball over in transition, which seems to be a problem with these guys—for us with these guys. I’d like to think that there’s nothing special about it just the fact that they’re a really good team and we seem to bring out the best in these guys for some reason and we’re just going to have to continue to work at it at the defensive end. I felt like we could get chances on offense when we got the ball down there especially at the beginning of the game. We got a little impatient when we got it down there a couple times but we just never had a chance to play enough offense over the course of the game. We felt like we were in the defensive end the whole time.”
Virginia junior attackman Steele Stanwick
On coming back off of injury: “I felt pretty good. It was tough watching last week’s game so I was excited to get out here and play. It definitely wasn’t the result we were looking for but this team always fights hard, which I’m proud to say. It just wasn’t our best game. That second quarter really got away from us. We just have to get back to practice and get ready for Penn.”
Virginia sophomore attackman Matt White
On turnovers at the beginning of the second quarter: “We were a little impatient. We had good matchups but we didn’t want to spin the ball, we just wanted to go right at them. In hindsight, I think if we would have slowed it down and taken it around a few times before going at those matchups it would have been good for us.”