The Blue Devils improve to 5-3 overall and 1-1 in ACC action while the Tar Heels fall to 5-3 overall and 0-1 in league play. Duke has now won 14 of the last 15 meetings between the rivals.
"I say this many times, but we just have so much respect for Carolina, their coaching staff, the program and the history," head coach John Danowski said. "Duke in the lacrosse world still has a lot of catching up to do to North Carolina so we always take this game as a great honor to play them and we always want to try and do our best when we play."
Duke darted out to a 4-0 lead behind two goals each from junior Jake Tripucka and sophomore Christian Walsh. The two teams then traded the next six goals before Wolf and Tripucka tallied consecutive markers in the last four minutes of the second quarter to give the Blue Devils a 9-3 lead at intermission.
"I thought CJ Costabile was phenomenal," Danowski said. "He had a huge game. I thought CJ was awesome so he gave us possession and momentum for sure. I thought we were patient offensively and that allowed us to get people to get to the cage so we shot well early. Defensively, we seemed to be winning our individual battles and so a combination of all of those things helped us get a lead."
After Wolf's second goal of the day increased Duke's lead to 10-3, North Carolina scored three goals within a three-minute span to pull within 10-6. Senior Robert Rotanz pushed the lead back to five goals with a man-down tally to close the third quarter.
To open the final period, the Tar Heels again utilized a three-goal spurt to get within 11-9 at the 6:10 mark when Joey Sankey found the back of the net for the third time in the game. Duke responded with goals by Wolf and Josh Dionne for a 13-9 lead before North Carolina accounted for the final margin with the evening's final two markers.
Four Blue Devils - Dionne, Tripucka, Walsh and Wolf - registered hat tricks on the day. Sankey led the Tar Heels with his three-goal, three-assist outing while Jimmy Bitter and Ryan Creighton added two goals each.
In the Duke net, redshirt senior Mike Rock posted seven saves including five in the fourth period, while North Carolina split its goaltending duties between Steven Rastivo (30 minutes; 5 saves; 9 goals against) and Andrew O'Connell (30 minutes; 3 saves; 4 goals against).
The Blue Devil defense was led by redshirt senior Michael Manley, who carded seven ground balls and two caused turnovers. Costabile won 13-of-22 draws and scooped up nine grounders.
Duke remains at home to greet Dartmouth on Sunday at 1 p.m.