No. 15 Marquette Falls to No. 6 Duke, 15-8
April 18, 2015
WAUWATOSA, Wis. -- The No. 15 Marquette University men's lacrosse team dropped the HEAD Coaches Classic to No. 6 Duke, 15-8, on Saturday afternoon at Hart Park in front of a record 4,575 fans in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin.
Junior attackman Conor Gately led the Golden Eagles (10-4) with two goals and a pair of assists, while sophomore midfielder Ryan McNamara also added two markers. Sophomore goalie Jimmy Danaher made 14 saves in net for Marquette, which was out-shot 42-39 for the contest.
Justin Guterding and Myles Jones each had a hat trick for the Blue Devils (10-4) and Jack Bruckner, the reigning ACC Offensive Player of the Week, was held to just one assist after posting 13 points in Duke's last two games against Virginia and Stony Brook.
Saturday's game was played in support of the HEADstrong Foundation, whose founder, Nick Colleluori, played at Hofstra for MU head coach Joe Amplo and John Danowski of Duke before succumbing to non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2006.
Trailing 12-7 midway through the fourth quarter, Gately provided a spark for Marquette after beating his defender at midfield and scoring his second goal of the day to cap off a 3-0 MU run. With momentum in favor of the Golden Eagles, Duke responded by winning the ensuing face-off, which allowed Jones to tally an assist and a goal in back-to-back possessions to give a commanding 14-8 lead.
The final score of 15-8 was Duke's (10-4, 1-3 ACC) largest advantage of the contest.
In a game that saw even amounts of scoring by both teams in the second and third quarters, Duke used a 5-0 run in the first quarter and a 3-0 run that closed the game to claim victory.
After the Blue Devils jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead, Marquette's K.C. Kennedy was able to win consecutive face-offs to allow the Golden Eagles to settle into their offense. MU responded with a 2-0 run of its own behind goals from redshirt junior Kyle Whitlow and Gately.
Duke took advantage of its speed in the midfield by scoring multiple transition goals as part of a 5-0 run in a span of 4:45 in the second quarter, in which the Blue Devils received tallies from five different players.
Despite Duke's two runs, Marquette's defense was able to hold its own against an offense that averages 14.69 goals per game, which included holding the Blue Devils scoreless for 13:53 at the end of the first quarter and most of the second. Danaher was peppered with shots all day, 42 overall, and was able to make 14 saves.
Gately set the pace of the offense from X and set up his teammates by tallying a team-high two assists. His strong play was joined by sophomore Ryan McNamara who scored two goals, one of which was the second in MU's fourth-quarter 3-0 run, while junior Blaine Fleming added a goal and an assist.
Kennedy was able to win 7-of-15 face-offs in the first 20 minutes, but the Blue Devils claimed 8-of-9 draws in the fourth quarter.
The Golden Eagles took advantage of this defensive stand by stringing together multiple long possessions that ended in goals from McNamara and Clarke, which cut Duke's lead to 7-4 with 6:46 remaining the in half.
MU was able to force Duke into 15 turnovers, while limiting Bruckner, who totaled 12 goals in Duke's past two games, without a goal.
Marquette returns to action next Saturday for its BIG EAST regular-season finale versus conference leader Denver. Faceoff at Hart Park is scheduled for 1 p.m. Central time and will be televised by CBS Sports Network.
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