Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/13/23
Delaware fell to No. 1 Duke 12-11 in the First Round of the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament at Koskinen Stadium in Durham, N.C. on Sunday evening.
The Blue Devils (14-2) advance to play Michigan in the NCAA Quarterfinals on Saturday, May 20. The Blue Hens (13-5) conclude the season after winning their second straight CAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship this spring.
Delaware nearly pulled the biggest upset in NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament history, but the Blue Hens were outscored 3-2 in the fourth quarter, and Charlie O’Connor scored the eventual game-winning goal with 4:25 remaining as top-seeded Duke escaped the First Round with a 12-11 victory.
Click here for the full bracket.
Click here to purchase tickets for the Final Four.
CAA Offensive Player of the Year, Tye Kurtz paced Delaware with four goals, while Mike Robinson and JP Ward scored two goals each. Matt Kilkeary had a valiant effort between the pipes, recording 15 saves and a .556 save percentage.
Delaware opened a 5-3 lead after the opening 15 minutes thanks to a first-quarter hat trick from Kurtz. The Blue Hens scored the first two goals seven seconds apart, as Jason Kolar netted the first score before Kurtz tallied his first. After Aidan Maguire got Duke on the board, Kurtz registered back-to-back goals to give Delaware a 4-1 lead. The Blue Devils scored two goals in the final five minutes of the first quarter, with a goal from Robinson splitting the tallies for Duke.
The Blue Hens pushed their lead to three at the break. Ward opened the second quarter with back-to-back goals, giving Delaware a 7-3 advantage at the 12:13 mark. The teams traded goals over the next three minutes, with Cam Acchione finding the back of the net for the Blue Hens. There was only one score over the final 9:15 in the half as Dyson Williams tallied his second score for the Blue Devils at the 5:39 mark, but Delaware took an 8-5 lead into halftime.
Duke opened the second half on a 4-0 run to take its first lead. Andrew McAdorey accounted for three goals during the run, scoring the first two of the third quarter before giving the Blue Devils a 9-8 lead with 8:48 remaining in the frame. Kurtz stopped the bleeding, pulling Delaware even after registering his fourth goal of the contest, and the teams entered the fourth tied 9-9.
Delaware freshman Brendan Powers gave the Blue Hens a 10-9 lead in the fourth quarter, scoring the opening goal of the frame at the 12:16 mark. Duke responded with a 3-0 run, which proved the difference, as Aidan Danenza, Brennan O’Neill and O’Connor tallied goals over a four-minute span. Robinson pulled Delaware within one, scoring his second goal with 2:35 remaining. The Blue Hens had a chance to tie in the final minute, but a turnover out of a timeout sealed Delaware’s fate.