DURHAM, N.C. – Graduate student Cherry Seaborn fired a goal in double overtime to lift the seventh-ranked Duke field hockey squad to a 2-1 victory over visiting California Friday evening at Williams Field at Jack Katz Stadium. The Blue Devils (9-2, 1-0 ACC) came from behind to tally their fourth consecutive win while improving to 3-0 on the season in overtime contests.
“Cal’s defense played great, goalkeeper played great, and really challenged us,” said head coach Pam Bustin. “We weren’t as sharp as we could have been. However, going into overtime, I was really proud of the team’s mentality. They play smart and they play with the certain will to win.”
The two teams battled through a scoreless first period with Duke placing five shots on goal. The Blue Devils were unable to convert in the opening frame despite some good looks at the cage, including an extended run down the field and feed by Seaborn with five minutes to go.
Cal registered the game’s first goal on a penalty corner play eight minutes into the second half, as Clara Goni scored on assists by Jordan O’Reilly and Shannon Elmitt. Playing from behind for the third time this fall, Duke responded with cleaner passing and increased activity up front. After the Golden Bears’ Nicole Henrikkson missed on a shot off the post, the Blue Devil offense countered with a number of players pushing forward, and senior McKay Ross put back a rebound to tie the game in the 60th minute.
The goal marked the second of the season for Ross, who tallied the gamewinner earlier this year in a 2-1 victory over William & Mary.
Duke earned two penalty corners before the end of regulation but Cal goalkeeper Courtney Hendrickson made three saves to send the match into overtime. Neither side scored in the first overtime period, though the Blue Devils controlled possession for the majority of the extra time. In the second overtime, a streaking Aileen Johnson passed the ball ahead for Seaborn, who put in the gamewinner from 10 yards out to secure a 2-1 win.
Led by a relentless attack on the cage, Duke collected its second overtime victory in as many weeks following a 3-2 overtime shootout win over previously top-ranked and unbeaten North Carolina last Friday in Chapel Hill.
“I think momentum is on our side right now, coming off of two Friday night games that have gone into double overtime,” Ross said. “It’s really important for us to stay focused and not let fatigue set in, and just keep our mind on the mission.”
The Blue Devils outshot Cal 18-7 for the match and held a 4-3 edge in penalty corners.
The Golden Bears dropped to 4-6 with Hendrickson posting 12 saves in the loss. Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Lauren Blazing tallied one save against two shots on goal.
Duke’s current homestand continues Sunday, Oct. 6 with a 1 p.m. ACC contest against No. 14 Wake Forest. The game is slated to be streamed live on GoDuke.com Inside Access.