DURHAM, N.C.—Duke University sophomore faceoff specialist Brian Smyth has been named the Duke Student-Athlete of the Week after his stellar performance in the men’s lacrosse 14-9 NCAA quarterfinal win over Johns Hopkins. The victory sent the Blue Devils back to the semifinals for the first time since 2014.
Smyth took every faceoff for the Blue Devils against Johns Hopkins, winning 18-of-25 for a .720 win percentage. He also picked up nine ground balls and added a goal to the winning cause. One of the most crucial of his 18 wins was a man-down faceoff victory. He picked up the ground ball and raced down the field while being hounded by Blue Jays defenseman and successfully killed the Duke penalty to keep Johns Hopkins from being able to capitalize on man-up.
With Duke’s lead down to two, 5-2, in the second quarter, Smyth won the ensuing faceoff and raced right down the field to score his sixth goal of the year and give the Blue Devils a three-goal cushion. In his two NCAA Tournament games, Smith has won 77 percent of his draws (41-of-53) and picked up 25 ground balls.
A native of West Hartford, Conn., Smyth has come on strong in the past six games. He owns a .649 win percentage at the X and has added five goals and two assists. In his prior 11 games, the sophomore owned a .426 win rate (58-of-136) and had a goal and two assists.
The fourth-seeded Blue Devils will face No. 1 Maryland in the NCAA Semifinal at Gillette Stadium Saturday, May 26 at 2:30 p.m. The game will be televised by ESPN2.