No. 2 Duke (7-1) vs. No. 5 Towson (5-1)
March 16, 2019 | 1 p.m. | ACC Network Extra
Koskinen Stadium | Durham, N.C.
John Danowski Bobblehead Day
- Saturday is John Danowski Bobblehead Day and early arriving fans can get one. The figure is in commemoration of Danowski becoming the first Division I head coach to 400 wins, which he did in Duke’s season-opening victory at Furman. He currently owns 406 career triumphs.
Setting the Scene
- Duke closes out its three-game homestand Saturday with its third top-five match-up of the 2019 season. The Blue Devils host No. 5 Towson at Koskinen at 1 p.m.
- The second-ranked Blue Devils are riding a six-game win streak and are 2-0 against top-five foes this season, beating No. 5 Denver and No. 2 Loyola.
The Series History
- Duke hosts Towson for the first time since 2013 as the two programs play for just the 11th time overall.
- Towson leads the overall series, which dates back to 1966, 7-3, but Duke owns the past two victories. The Blue Devils edged the Tigers in Johnny Unitas Stadium last year by a 10-8 score. Towson’s last win over Duke was in 2001, a 12-10 NCAA Tournament victory.
Tale of the Tape
|EMO||6-20 (.300)||9-28 (.321)|
|Man Down||16-23 (.696)||16-26 (.615)|
|Faceoff %||129-205 (.629)||124-164 (.756)|
By the Numbers
17 – Career hat tricks in Joe Robertson’s 28 career games
6 – Points needed for sophomore Joe Robertson to become the 46th Blue Devil to amass 100 career points.
105-18 – Duke’s home record under head coach John Danowski, an .854 win percentage
8.88 – Duke’s goals against average this season, ranking second in the ACC and sixth nationally
13.50 – Towson’s goals scored per game average, tops in the CAA and tied for 13th nationally with Duke
142 – Career points for Brad Smith, ranking 17th among active players
.755 – Faceoff win percentage for Towson’s Alex Woodall, second nationally
.645 – Faceoff win percentage for Duke’s Brian Smyth, eighth nationally
72 – Percent of Woodall’s faceoff wins in which he collects the ground ball
19 – Game goal scoring streak for Joe Robertson, ranking eighth among Division I players and tops in the ACC
28.00 – Opponents’ shots per game average in the past four games
43.8 – Shots per game average for Towson in 2019
Last Time Out
- Second-ranked Duke used a 7-0 third quarter to break open a 7-7 first-half draw against Utah Tuesday night. The Blue Devils held the Utes scoreless for 25:29 over a span of three quarters to build the 14-7 advantage.
- Garrett Leadmon led all Duke goal scorers with four, while Joe Robertson and Brad Smith both had five points apiece. The hat trick was the first for Leadmon, while Smith tallied five points for the second straight game. Turner Uppgren made six saves in 53 minutes of action.
Last Time We Met
- Third-ranked Duke scored the game’s final three goals and held Towson scoreless for the final 12:19 to rally from a one-goal deficit to a 10-8 road victory over the Tigers.
- Senior goaltender Danny Fowler finished with a season-high 14 saves and Justin Guterding paced the offense with four points. Duke led 7-2 at the half, but a big third quarter from the Tigers put Towson within one, 7-6, in the fourth quarter.
- The Tigers led 8-7 at the 12:19 mark before Sean Lowrie sparked the 3-0 run to finish the game. Guterding and Joe Robertson provided the other two goals.
Home Sweet Home for the Blue Devils
- Duke has fared well in the comfy confines of Koskinen Stadium since 2007. The Blue Devils are 2-1 at Koskinen this season and 105-18 all-time at home under John Danowski. Duke is 4-1 in Durham this season, playing Penn on the West Campus Turf Fields.
Looking at Duke
- Duke extended its win streak to six games Tuesday night against Utah. The Blue Devils enter Saturday’s non-conference matchup with a 7-1 record. The Blue Devils are led offensively by sophomore Joe Robertson’s 24 goals and 10 assists. Brad Smith is hitting his stride and has 24 points from 11 goals and 13 assists.
- On defense, the duo of All-Americans Cade Van Raaphorst and JT Giles-Harris anchor the close defense along with senior Jack Fowler who is a first-year starter. Van Raaphorst has 21 ground balls and 12 caused turnovers, while Giles-Harris has 19 and 11, respectively. They have been matchup nightmares for opponents and most recently held Loyola to seven goals and two of the nation’s top scorers to only a combined three points.
- Brian Smyth has been solid at the X with a 100-155 (.645) record. He has picked up ground balls on 65 of his 100 wins and owns two goals.
- In goal, senior Turner Uppgren is the starter and owns a 9.16 goals against average and a .479 save percentage.
- Towson comes to Durham after suffering an 18-11 loss to then-No. 3 Cornell. Ranked No. 1 prior to the setback, the Tigers are ranked fifth with a 5-1 overall record. They are 3-1 on the road this season.
- Brendan Sunday paces the offense with 31 points from 19 goals and 12 assists, while Brody McLean has 17 and four, respectively. The Tigers are averaging 13.50 goals per game and have not been held to single digit goals this season. The 11 goals they had against Cornell are the fewest in a game for the Tigers.
- Defensively, Towson is allowing opponents 34 shots per game and has a goals against average of 10.67. Gray Bodden has a team-best 12 caused turnovers. Tyler Canto has played all but 30 minutes in goal this season and sports a 10.55 goals against average and a .540 save percentage.
- Alex Woodall is one of the premier faceoff specialists in the country, winning 76 percent (117-of-155) of his draws and picking up 84 ground balls.
- Saturday’s contest features a high-powered offense in Towson and a solid defensive squad in Duke. The Tigers rank 13th nationally with a 13.50 goals scored per game average, while Duke is allowing only 8.88 goals per game. Towson has not been held under 11 goals in its six contests and Duke has allowed double digit tallies only twice.
Duke in Top 10 Matchups
- When Duke and Towson meet Saturday, it will be the 90th top 10 meeting for the Blue Devils since 2007. The Blue Devils are 56-33 when both teams are ranked among the top 10.
- They are 17-14 in top-five games and 8-6 when ranked higher in the top-five meetings.
Robertson Point Streak
- Joe Robertson is riding a 19-game point and goal scoring streak dating back to March 24, 2018. He has been held without a point just once in his career and has 67 points in this 19-game run. His goal scoring streak currently ranks sixth among all Division I players.
- The Blue Devils open ACC play next, traveling to Syracuse March 24. Faceoff is set for 12 p.m., at a location yet to be decided due to the likelihood the Orange will host NCAA Women’s Basketball action.