DURHAM, N.C. – The Duke field hockey program got its first test just four days into preseason training, hosting James Madison for a three-period scrimmage Sunday afternoon at Williams Field at Jack Katz Stadium.
“Only four days in, I thought we were ready to face outside competition,” said head coach Pam Bustin. “I really am grateful that James Madison made the trip down here. We train and we go hard at each other every day, but there is just a different element and intensity when you have another opponent.”
After a scoreless 25-minute first period, the Blue Devils broke through in the second, as junior forward Jessica Buttinger converted on a penalty corner opportunity off of an assist by sophomore Amanda Kim. Senior Emmie Le Marchand knocked in a penalty stroke near the end of the third period to close out a 2-0 victory for Duke in its first competition of the 2013 season.
“What we’re focusing on this preseason are our basic skills and our organization and getting it down perfectly so we have the ability to be creative in the defense, mid and forward line,” said graduate student Devon Gagliardi.
The squad continues preseason training this week before making the short trip to Chapel Hill, N.C., to scrimmage against the Tar Heels Saturday, Aug. 24 at 2 p.m. The Blue Devils officially open the 2013 campaign at home Friday, Aug. 30 at 3 p.m. against Indiana.