DURHAM, N.C. – Senior attackman Josh Dionne scored five goals to lead No. 3 Duke past visiting Jacksonville, 16-10, in the season opener for both squads on Saturday afternoon at Koskinen Stadium in Durham, N.C. Senior Jordan Wolf chipped in six points off of a pair of tallies and four assists.
“We thought Jacksonville was terrific,” said head coach John Danowski. “They played with a lot of emotion, they were really well prepared and really well coached. Their new pieces suit them very well. Those kids have played us before. They were not intimidated and as always we’re always going to get everybody’s best shot. It was great for our guys to experience that right out of the gate.”
The Blue Devils shook off an early 3-0 deficit to win its seventh season-opener in eight years under head coach John Danowski. Saturday’s contest marked the return of Duke defenseman Casey Carroll, who last played collegiately on May 28, 2007 in the Blue Devils’ 12-11 loss to Johns Hopkins in the NCAA title game. Carroll, who served in the U.S. Army from 2007-12, missed the 2013 campaign due to a knee injury.
“Defensively, we were prepared and we knew what they were going to do,” Danowski said. “This was Casey Carroll’s first game since 2007. He needs to see the speed of what’s going on. This was Jamie Ikeda’s first start, this is Brian Dailey’s first time playing short stick d-middie. With all those things being said, the game changes.”
The Dolphins jumped out to a 3-0 lead thanks to markers from David Goldman, Tom Moore and Dakota Rohlin. Duke responded with seven consecutive goals, including career-firsts from freshman Thomas Zenker and sophomore Chad Coach, and eventually took a 7-5 lead into intermission.
Duke scored the first four goals of the third quarter for an 11-5 advantage at the 3:41 mark of the period when Dionne tossed in the second of his five tallies.
For Dionne, the five goals matched his career-best outing set previously against Virginia on April 12, 2013. Cohan, in his first career start, added two goals and three assists, while junior midfielder Kyle Keenan registered a career-best two goals and four points.
At the faceoff X, Brendan Fowler won 18-of-28 draws and secured 16 ground balls. In the Duke net, Kyle Turri was credited with two saves to improve to 17-2 for his career.
Jacksonville’s Pete DeLuca was terrific in the Dolphin net, posting 18 saves. Rohlin paced the Dolphins with three goals while Duncan Clancy carded two goals and three assists.
Duke will host No. 4 Denver next Saturday at 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN3.