DURHAM, N.C. – A little severe weather was not enough to keep Duke Blue Devil head coach Robbie Church from reaching a milestone Friday night at Koskinen Stadium. Behind a dominant defensive showing, No. 13 Duke (4-1-0) shutout UNCW (2-3-0), 1-0, to earn Church his 200th-career win as head coach of the Blue Devils.
After a two-and-a-half hour lightning delay before game one of the Duke Nike Classic between No. 9 North Carolina and Auburn, Duke and UNCW were finally able to get play underway. Imani Dorsey’s fourth goal in the last four contests, coupled with a clean sheet showing from keeper Brooke Heinsohn and company paced the Blue Devils to the historic victory. With the win, Church becomes the sixth active ACC coach to reach 200 wins at his or her respective school.
“I just want to say thank you to all the players and staff that we’ve had in our program,” Church said on his 200th win at Duke. “And also for the support of Dr. [Chris] Kennedy and Dr. [Kevin] White, as well as Joe Alleva who hired me 17 years ago. It means a lot.”
Duke controlled the pace and tempo from start to finish, outshooting the Seahawks 13-3 and earning four corners to UNCW’s zero. The Blue Devils kept the pressure on from the get-go, with the breakthrough coming at the 38:55 mark, as Dorsey put a shot from the left side of the box to the bottom right corner, knocking it off the post and into the back of the net for the score.
“What a great finish, low and to the corner like we’ve been talking about,” Church said. “I thought we were really on fire in the first half. We were on the same page offensively and defensively and knew what we wanted to do.”
With the goal, Dorsey has tallied a point in all five contests this season. After racking up an assist in the season opener, the Elkridge, Md., senior has scored a goal in the last four matches.
Heinsohn recorded her second win of the season while picking up her first-career solo shutout. The redshirt freshman saved the one shot on goal she faced, with her defense keeping the UNCW attack shut down for a majority of the match.
Duke returns to the pitch Sunday, as the Blue Devils host Auburn at 1:30 p.m. ET, to close out the Duke Nike Classic. No. 9 North Carolina and UNCW will face off at 11 a.m. to begin the day at Koskinen. Tickets are $5 general admission, with kids five and under getting in for free, and will get you into both of Sunday’s contests.
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