DURHAM, N.C. – In the first of two exhibition games for the Duke University men’s soccer team, the Blue Devils came out and battled George Washington to a scoreless draw. The exhibition followed four grueling days of two practices per day for the Blue Devils.
Duke held an 11-4 advantage overall in shots, including a 5-2 edge in corner kicks, but was unable to find the back of the net during the 90 minutes of action. Junior captain Sean Davis had the most shots with four, while senior captain Sebastien Ibeagha anchored the defense to a shutout.
“I’ll tell you what. George Washington gave us a great game,” said head coach John Kerr. “Coach Jones did a good job preparing his team for our weapons. There were a lot of good signs out there today, but like last year we didn’t execute in the final third. We got another shutout, which I’m really pleased with, but our execution going forward was lacking. It’s early in the preseason and we are going to keep continuing to work on it.”
The game was the first for a host of Blue Devils. Redshirt senior and South Carolina transfer Alex Long went the distance in goal, making two saves, while freshmen Seo-In Kim and Jimmy Doll both played in their first collegiate outing. Doll played the full 90, while Kim came off the bench to give Duke 64 quality minutes.
The Blue Devils controlled the early possession of the first half with neither team being able to generate dangerous scoring opportunities. Duke had the best scoring chance as Kim served in a corner kick that Ibeagha headed just over the crossbar. Both goalkeepers were untested in the opening 45 minutes, making one save apiece.
George Washington had the better of play to start the second half. The Colonials nearly got on the board in the 53rd minute when a Bailey Hinners shot hit the crossbar. Duke picked up its play and pressed forward. In the 69th minute Luis Rendon had a fantastic strike from 18 yards that was pushed with by the George Washington goalkeeper.
Kim continued to stay active for the Blue Devils on the left flank and generated a few near chances. But the best look came when Davis one-timed a left-footed shot from the top of the box off the crossbar and Ibeagha put the rebound over the goal.
Long finished the game with two saves, while George Washington’s Jp Van Der Merwe had two.
Duke hosts Old Dominion in its final exhibition game, Aug. 23 at 7 p.m., at Koskinen Stadium. Admission is free and open to the public.