DURHAM, N.C.-ONE. That's right. Only one more day until the 2013 Duke men's lacrosse season gets underway with a top-10 matchup between the No. 6 Blue Devils and No. 9 Denver Feb. 9 at 12 p.m. In honor of the final day prior to the beginning of 2013, we will take a look back at Duke's 2010 National Championship.
Duke completed what became known as the redemption tour through the NCAA Tournament in thrilling fashion as then sophomore CJ Costabile won the opening faceoff in overtime and raced down the field, dodged several Notre Dame defensemen and unleashed a high shot into the net to lift the No. 5 seed Blue Devils to the 6-5 overtime victory in front of 37,126 fans at M&T Bank Stadium.
"It's sick," Costabile said about scoring the game-winning goal. "The best feeling about it is we set this goal from the beginning of the year. Guys who have been here before me, [those guys] who have been here three times before and finally seeing them walk-off that field with a big smile on their faces are the best moment about that."
In a contest marked by strong defensive play, the two teams combined for just 11 goals, marking the lowest scoring output in an NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championship game. Neither team led by more than one goal during the game as it featured four lead changes and five ties. The Blue Devils' attack struggled to find the net against Notre Dame's Scott Rodgers, who tallied 15 saves in goal.
"Kevin Corrigan and his staff...what a job," head coach John Danowski said. "Those kids defensively were phenomenal on the ball and phenomenal as a unit. When we did get an opening Scott Rodgers was terrific. I am extremely happy and joyful for our students and anybody who has ever worn a Duke jersey. This game was a great battle."
Senior Max Quinzani, juniors Zach Howell and Michael Manley and sophomore CJ Costabile all were selected to the NCAA All-Tournament Team. Rodgers was voted as the tournament's Most Valuable Player. Duke finishes the season with a 16-4 overall record, while Notre Dame was 10-7.
Howell and senior midfielder Steve Schoeffel each recorded two goals for the Blue Devils, while seniors Ned Crotty and Max Quinzani were held to just one assist each.
"We knew that was the challenge coming into the game, and the coaches did a great job of telling us, 'Don't change anything that we do," Howell said. "Keep shooting, keep taking opportunities, and they'll fall.' And I think that, since we stayed on it, nobody got discouraged when [Scott Rodgers] was making the good saves. We just stayed on it, and that just helped us grind through."
Freshman goaltender Dan Wigrizer became just the sixth rookie backstop to win a national title in NCAA history as he made five saves, including stopping a fast-break opportunity for the Irish in the second quarter.
The championship was the first for the Blue Devils lacrosse team and the 12th NCAA team title in program history. It followed the men's basketball championship from that March, giving Duke national titles in the same year for the first time in school history.