HEMPSTEAD, N.Y.—Duke junior Joe Robertson scored with the shot clock ticking down to one in overtime to lift the second-seeded Blue Devils to a thrilling 14-13 victory over Notre Dame in the NCAA men’s lacrosse quarterfinals at Hofstra University. Duke advances to its 12th NCAA semifinal in program history and second straight.
“That was one of the most fun games I’ve ever played in,” said senior Cade Van Raaphorst. “I just had a smile on my face the entire game.”
After a back-and-forth 60 minutes ended all even at 13-13 between the Blue Devils and Fighting Irish, the two squads headed into overtime for the third time since 2010 and the second time in NCAA Tournament history.
Joe Stein, having taken 20 faceoffs on the day, came out and popped the ball out to the left wing where Van Raaphorst picked up the ground ball. Head coach John Danowski called a timeout to draw up what hopefully would be the final play of the game.
Stein went 12-of-21 at the faceoff X and picked up four ground balls. It was his second straight game of taking 21 draws after having taken just seven in the prior 15 games.
Duke dropped the ball a couple of times and nearly lost it over the head of Joey Manown before the junior attackman picked up the loose ball. Duke fired three more shots before getting one final look with six seconds left. With time winding down to under five on the shot clock, Robertson got the ball in his stick behind the goal, turned the corner of the cage and got an opening and fired a left-handed bouncer past the Notre Dame goalie for the win with one second left on the shot clock.
The entire game was back and forth with Duke jumping out to a 4-0 lead, only to have the Fighting Irish respond with four straight to tie it 4-4. The trend continued until Notre Dame took the lead, 12-11, with 7:00 left in the fourth quarter.
Notre Dame’s lead came after it trailed 11-9 after three quarters with senior CJ Carpenter netting his third of the day with 1:55 left in the third quarter. The Irish came out in the fourth quarter and tallied four straight and stifled the Blue Devils’ offense to go in front. Bryan Costabile had two goals and an assist in the run, while Ryder Garnsey had a goal and an assist.
Garnsey finished with four goals and two assists, while Costabile had two goals and two assists.
Duke (13-4) senior Jake Seau scored the biggest goal of his career 47 seconds later to end Duke’s scoring drought at 10:42 and tie the game 12-12. The two squads traded defensive stops over the next four minutes before Robertson scored a crucial man-up goal off an assist from Nakeie Montgomery to put Duke back ahead 13-12.
Brian Willetts came right down the field 35 seconds later on extra man and tallied his third of the afternoon to tie the game for the fifth time and set up the thrilling finish. Willetts finished the day with a hat trick.
In goal, Turner Uppgren had nine saves and four ground balls. Notre Dame goaltender Matt Schmidt had 11 saves and a pair of ground balls. N
The Blue Devils will play Virginia in the NCAA semifinals, Saturday, May 25 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. The semifinal games will be at noon and 2:30 p.m., on ESPN2.