DURHAM, N.C.—Duke outshot Virginia 23-7 and had three chances cleared off the line in 1-1 double overtime tie with Virginia Tech in ACC men’s soccer action this evening. Sebastien Ibeagha netted the goal for the Blue Devils.
With only one goal in the first half through the first four games, the Duke (2-1-2, 0-1-1 ACC) was determined to get off to a fast start in its ACC home opener. The Blue Devils, after generating three fouls against Virginia Tech (2-1-1, 1-0-1 ACC) in the opening three minutes, capitalized on a Hokie foul 30 yards from goal at the 3:50 mark.
“Like the whole crowd was, I was hoping for that second goal to really boost our momentum,” said head coach John Kerr. “To be fair to Virginia Tech they were resilient all game long. They rolled up their sleeves after that goal and kept on plugging away.”
Free kick specialist Sean Davis stepped behind the ball and struck the ball to the near post where Ibeagha was able to redirect it past Virginia Tech goalkeeper Kyle Renfro for the 1-0 lead. The Blue Devils continued to press forward, generating two more quality chances over the next 10 minutes.
The Hokies nearly evened the score in the 14th minute with a pair of rapid fire chances. Daniel Lauretano’s header on the Virginia Tech was knocked down by Duke goalie Alex Long. André Thomas tried to hit the rebound in, but Duke was able to clear the ball of the line to keep its 1-0 advantage.
In a physical battle featuring a combined 21 fouls in the opening 45 minutes, Duke outshot the Hokies 4-3 and headed into the locker room up 1-0. After a flurry of chances in the opening 20 minutes for both squads, neither team was able to create good looks in the final 25.
Duke upped its pressure in its offensive third in the second half. The Blue Devils nearly went ahead 2-0 in the 58th minute when Luis Rendon’s shot from the left side of the penalty area was cleared away by a Hokie defender. The opportunities continued to come for Duke, but it was unable to find the back of the net.
In the 78th minute, freshman striker Brody Huitema picked the pocket of a Virginia Tech defender and got into the penalty box where he was pulled down for a penalty kick. Davis’s ensuing penalty kick was saved by Renfro to keep the score 1-0 for the Blue Devils.
Just 10 minutes later and down a player due to a red card, Hokie Bradley Vorv sent a long ball over the heads of Duke’s defense. Drew Ranahan was able to run on to it and head it over to Robert Alberti for the tying goal with in the 88th minute.
“We got caught ball watching unfortunately and were made to pay for some sleeping in the back,” Kerr said. “It’s tough to take because we had a chance to go up 2-0 when we had the penalty kick.”
Neither Duke nor Virginia Tech was dangerous in the two overtime sessions as both squads ended the night with a tie. Renfro finished with nine saves for the Hokies, including his penalty kick stop, while Long had three for the Blue Devils.
The Blue Devils return to action at Davidson Tuesday, Sept. 17 at 7 p.m.