Duke (4-5-3, 1-3-2) at Boston College (6-6-0, 3-4-0) Sunday, Oct. 6 • 1:00 PM • Newton, Mass. Newton Soccer Field
Duke Hits the Road for Boston College on Sunday... The Duke women’s soccer team (4-5-3, 1-3-2 ACC) will hit the road for the first of a four-match road swing on Sunday, Oct. 6 at Boston College (6-6, 3-4). The contest will be played at the Newton Soccer Field in Newton, Mass., at 1:00 p.m. The Blue Devils will then travel to Maryland (Oct. 13), Clemson (Oct. 17) and Notre Dame (Oct. 20), before returning home to host N.C. State (Oct. 24) and Pittsburgh (Oct. 27) in the final two home matches of the 2013 campaign. Duke enjoyed its first stint without a mid-week match this week prior to heading to Boston College on Sunday.
A Look at Boston College... Boston College enters Sunday with a 6-6 overall and 3-4 league mark. The Eagles are coming off a 4-3 loss on the road to No. 5 Florida State. McKenzie Meehan leads Boston College with 12 goals and 24 points. Meehan has scored five goals over the last two matches and is the reigning ACC Player of the Week. The Eagles have scored six goals over their past two contests and owns a 3-4 record at home this year. The Series with Boston College... Duke and Boston College will meet for the 11th time in school history and the first time when neither team has been ranked. The Blue Devils lead the series, 5-3-2, and has won three straight against the Eagles. In matches played at Boston College, Duke owns a 1-3-1 mark, but is coming off a 1-0 victory in the last meeting in Newton as senior Kaitlyn Kerr scored the game-winner.
Cobb Scores in Back-to-Back Matches... Blue Devil junior forward Kelly Cobb has scored goals in back-to-back matches to give her three tallies on the season. Cobb, Kim DeCesare and Kaitlyn Kerr lead Duke with three goals each. A product of Chugiak, Alaska, Cobb owns 16 career goals in 48 matches.
On the Road... So far this year, Duke owns a 1-2-1 record on the road with the lone victory coming at 12th-ranked Texas A&M in the season opener. The Blue Devils have lost at South Carolina, Wake Forest and tied Syracuse in the other road matches. Weinberg Moving Up Career Charts... Senior Laura Weinberg has totaled eight points this season, which all have come over the last six matches. She collected four assists against Miami (2), Florida State (1) and Virginia Tech (1) followed by goals at Wake Forest and Syracuse. Weinberg moved into third place on Duke’s all-time points list with 94 and is only one away from second place (Casey McCluskey, 95). Weinberg owns 36 career goals, which ranks No. 3 on the Blue Devil charts. She is only four away from tying McCluskey (40) for second. Weinberg totaled a career-high 16 goals and 12 assists in 2012 and is only 25 points away from matching the Duke career points mark of 117 held by Kelly Walbert.
In the NCAA Stats... After ranking in the top 10 of most of the offensive categories last year, Duke currently ranks 192nd in scoring offense with a 1.25 per game average. The Blue Devils are 146th in goals-against average (1.184), 108th in assists (1.5) and 158th in points (4.0) per game. Boston College ranks 95th in scoring offense (1.75) and 97th in assists (1.58). Mckenzie Meehan ranks sixth in goals per game (1.091) and third in goals (12).
NCAA RPI... The second NCAA RPI was released this week with Duke moving from No. 44 to No. 34 overall. The Blue Devils’ challenging schedule shows in the RPI -- losses to Virginia (1), Florida State (6), Wake Forest (8), UCLA (7), South Carolina (9). Challenging Schedule... Duke’s non-conference schedule was one of the toughest in the nation featuring four ranked opponents -- No. 4 UCLA, No. 17 South Carolina, No. 10 West Virginia and then No. 12 Texas A&M.
Slow Scoring Start... After the Blue Devils posted a school-record 207 points a year ago, Duke opened the 2013 season with a slow start scoring five goals in the first six matches. The five goals in six matches was the lowest output in school history to start the year. The previous low was eight in 2005. Duke also had nine goals in six matches in 1996 and 1998. Duke has scored at least one goal in all but one match this season (South Carolina). Duke has totaled five goals scored over the last three matches.
Duke Freshmen Make Immediate Impact... Duke freshmen have made an immediate impact and over the last eight matches at least three rookies have started -- Christina Gibbons, Lizzy Raben, Malinda Allen, Toni Payne and Rebecca Quinn. Quinn was injured in the New Mexico match and is expected back this weekend at Boston College. A total of seven freshmen have seen action so far this season – Lizzy Raben, Christina Gibbons, Rebecca Quinn, Toni Payne, Krysia Sikora, Malinda Allen and Catherine Blair. Duke featured three freshmen starting during the opening weekend (Lizzy Raben, Rebecca Quinn and Christina Gibbons), which is the most since 2009 when Tara Campbell, Erin Koballa and Nicole Lipp started as freshmen. The Blue Devils started two freshmen on defense in the season opener (Raben, Gibbons) for the first time since the 2002 campaign when Kate Seibert and Carolyn Ford started on defense as rookies. It is only the third time in school history two freshmen have started on defense in the season opener.
Kershner in Goal... Blue Devil redshirt sophomore Ali Kershner has been waiting for two years behind four-year starting keeper Tara Campbell to make her first start. Kershner was given the opportunity on Aug. 23 at 12th-ranked Texas A&M and made the most of her chance notching a shutout and three saves over 90 minutes. On Sept. 1 versus New Mexico, Kershner netted her second straight shutout in a 1-0 victory. She became the first Duke goalkeeper in school history to register two shutouts in her first two collegiate starts. She had her best performance against Miami with a career-high five saves, including a penalty kick save in the first half. Kershner now owns three shutouts. As of late, Kershner has allowed two or more goals in four out of the last five matches. She had played in five matches in 2012 prior to this season.
Duke Battling Injuries... The Blue Devils have had their share of injuries in 2013 as Duke has been without starters Cassie Pecht and Gilda Doria for the entire season, while also not having the services of potential starter Alex Straton. Since the season started, starting freshman midfielder Rebecca Quinn went down with a foot injury and starting defender Tabria Williford suffered a concussion and a quad injury. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Meghan Thomas has been dealing with a shoulder injury and has not played since Aug. 30 against Kennesaw State. She is expected back this week at Boston College. Both Pecht and Doria are likely to miss the entire season, while Quinn is expected back at Boston College, Straton is out for the season, while Williford was injured again versus Virginia and will miss a couple of weeks. Pecht and Doria have combined for 13 goals and 35 assists over their career.
Noting Duke... • The Blue Devils are 0-4 this season when being outshot by an opponent. • Duke freshman Toni Payne owns three assists on the year, which is tied for the second most on the Blue Devil squad. • The Blue Devils have scored at least one goal in the last 10 matches and have been shutout only once this season (at South Carolina). • Duke owns a 1-3-2 overall record this season in matches played on Sunday. • Redshirt junior Meghan Thomas notched her first collegiate shutout against Kennesaw State and owns a 0.67 goals-against average in two matches in 2013. • Duke featured five freshmen starting against New Mexico. • The Blue Devils have scored six goals this season in the first half. Two of those came at Syracuse on Sept. 22 and another two versus Virginia on Sept. 26. • Duke has outshot its opponents in the opening 12 matches by a 209-146 ledger. • Freshman Christina Gibbons leads Duke with 1,138 minutes played so far this season. She has seen action in all but two minutes on the defensive end. • The Blue Devils feature tri-captains in 2013 with Kim DeCesare, Gilda Doria and Kaitlyn Kerr getting the nod from their teammates. • Duke returned 95.4 percent of its scoring from the 2012 season, including 62 of 65 goals scored. • Dating back to the 2011 campaign, 11 of the 12 Blue Devil losses have been by one goal. • Duke is coming off advancing to the NCAA Elite Eight for the fourth time out of the last six years. • The Blue Devils welcome the 10th-ranked recruiting class in the nation.
Consecutive Starts... Senior defender Natasha Anasi owns a team-best 62-game consecutive starts streak. Over her career, Anasi has helped lead Duke to 36 shutouts on the defensive end. She is a two-time All-America and MAC Hermann Trophy watch list selection. The 62 straight starts is tied ninth on Duke’s record books.
In the Rankings... Duke and Boston College are not ranked.
Blue Devils Moving Up Career Charts... Kaitlyn Kerr, Kim DeCesare and Mollie Pathman all rank in the top 15 of the Blue Devil career charts. Kerr is ninth on the career points list (70), tied eighth in goals (26) and tied 11th in assists (18). DeCesare is tied eighth in goals (26). Pathman is third with 25 assists.