DURHAM, N.C.—Junior forward Daniele Proch calmly slotted a shot in off of a corner kick in the 19th minute to help the 10th-ranked Blue Devils to a 1-0 victory over NC State in the final men’s soccer preseason exhibition.
The third and final scrimmage proved to be the best for the Blue Devils as they controlled the run of play throughout the 90 minutes. The first half featured crisp and dynamic ball movement all over the field. Duke was able to get forward into the final third and took advantage in the 19th minute by winning a corner kick.
Junior Max Moser stepped up from the left side and sent his service to the far post to the head of graduate student transfer Kevin Feucht. The German native headed the ball back down to the penalty spot for Proch to put in the back of the net. It was the Blue Devils’ first goal in the run of play during the preseason.
Defensively, Duke was excellent in remaining organized and kept the Wolfpack from being able to generate many true quality looks at net. The best chance from the Wolfpack came late in the stanza when Clayton Sparks was wide open from 15 yards, but sent it over the bar to send Duke into halftime with the 1-0 lead.
Duke didn’t take its foot off the gas in the second half and continued to get forward. Issa Rayyan remained a dynamic presence on the flank and Suniel Veerakone nearly put the Blue Devils up 2-0 as his strike nicked the post.
The Wolfpack started to get into the run of play as the second half progressed. David Loera was excellent in the middle of the field for NC State and nearly provided the equalizer late in the game, but was denied by a diving save from Duke goalie Will Pulisic.
It was the second clean sheet in preseason action for the Blue Devils. Overall, Duke held a 14-8 advantage in shots. Pulisic finished with one save as did NC State goalkeeper Leon Krapf.
The Blue Devils open their 2018 slate Friday, Aug. 24 against No. 20 FIU. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.