DURHAM, N.C. -- No. 8 Duke came out strong on Saturday afternoon in Koskinen Stadium and never looked back, blowing out Boston College 16-6 on senior day. The dominant Blue Devils were led by five goals each from junior attacker Carolyn Davis and sophomore midfielder Danielle Kachulis.
The game marked the last regular season home game for the Blue Devils and featured a postgame ceremony honoring the team’s seven seniors. It was Duke’s fourth straight home game and first contest against an unranked opponent since March 11, a swing that spanned six games.
It was all Duke early and throughout the match, as the Blue Devils scored two goals in the first 1:03, gave up one to the Eagles 2:25 in and then scored the next 10 goals over 30:43 to run out to a 12-1 lead with 26:52 remaining in the second half.
Davis paved the way offensively in the first stanza, hitting paydirt four times on eight shots and picking up three draw controls. Freshmen midfielders Sarah Bullard and Emma Hamm would each tally their two goals in the first, and junior attacker Megan Del Monte registered two of her game-high three assists before halftime.
The second period would belong to Kachulis, who found the back of the net three times after scoring twice in the first half. Kachulis’ five goals came on just five shots and were a career-high for the native of Parker, Colo. Junior captain and midfielder Jess Adam dished out two assists in the second stanza, including one to Kachulis.
"I'm really proud of how Danielle played," said head coach Kerstin Kimel. "She's been working really hard on both sides of the ball to improve her game and I felt like all of that hard work paid off today. She was obviously a big factor in our win and in our performance as a team and we look forward to having her build on her game today going down the stretch of this season."
Duke tallied five of the first six goals in the second half to increase its lead to 15-2 before emptying most of its available bench. Boston College scored four of the final five goals in the last 13:20 when the issue was no longer in doubt.
The Duke defense was relentless throughout the contest. It caused 12 turnovers (B.C. committed 20 overall), picked up 17 ground balls and only allowed the Eagles to convert 8-of-15 clears. Senior Sarah Kirchhofer and sophomore Sara Giedgowd each caused two turnovers and junior goalkeeper Kim Imbesi led the team with four ground balls.
For the second straight game, Davis showed signs of returning to her position in the midfield that she has had the last two seasons, securing a team-high five draw controls, picking up three ground balls and causing two turnovers. Davis and Hamm’s eight draw controls combined allowed Duke to win the draw (16-8) for the first time since the fourth game of the season and the fifth time in 13 matches this year.
Boston College struggled offensively, especially in the first half, and junior Lauren Fitzpatrick’s two goals were the most by any Eagle on the day. Junior goalkeeper Katie Monaghan made a great effort in the cage, posting 13 saves.
Duke snapped a four-game losing streak to improve to 8-5 on the year and 2-2 in the ACC while Boston College fell to 4-8 and 2-3 in the conference. The Blue Devils will take over third place in the ACC regardless of the results of the match between third-place North Carolina and second-place Maryland tonight. The Eagles fell to fifth-place in the league standings.
Duke has never lost to Boston College and now holds a 5-0 mark in the series. Saturday was only the second time that the Blue Devils have hosted the Eagles, and the first time that has happened since 1997.
Duke will have little rest, as it will take on ACC foe Virginia Tech on Monday at 6:00 p.m., in Blacksburg, Va.