WILMINGTON, N.C.—Duke sophomore Conor Kelly scored in the 88th minute to tie the game, but a goal 10 seconds later from host UNC Wilmington proved to be the difference tonight as the Seahawks came away with a 2-1 victory in exhibition men’s soccer action. The Blue Devils move to 1-1 in preseason play.
UNC Wilmington, which defeated Winthrop by a 2-0 score in its first scrimmage, had the better of offensive player in the early going. The Seahawks generated four shots in the first half, including two on frame that were stopped by junior goalkeeper Will Pulisic.
Duke stymied the Seahawk offense a bit in the final 15 minutes, allowing only two shots. The Blue Devils were saved by the woodwork in the final minute as UNCW striker Phillip Goodrum hit the post in the 45th minute to send the teams scoreless into the break.
The scoreless battle continued in the second half with neither team making any major lineup changes. Pulisic came up with his third save of the night just 44 seconds into the half.
After little offensive action from either team, the Blue Devils made a near full lineup change in the 65th minute with the score still tied at zeros.
Just over 10 minutes later, UNCW took advantage of an inexperienced Duke squad and took the 1-0 lead on a Parker Norris goal.
The Blue Devils responded by putting immediate pressure on the Seahawk defense. Cameron Kerr fired his first shot of the game and Kelly started to get into the action and broke through in the 88th minute by putting in a rebound from an initial goalkeeper save.
Norris struck again right off the ensuing kickoff, providing the difference make for the Seahawks. Duke’s last ditch shot in the 90th minute was stopped by the Seahawk goalkeeper.
Overall, Duke outshot UNCW 12-10, including 9-4 in the second half. Pulisic finished with all three saves for the Blue Devils, while Michael Reis came off the bench for the final 28 minutes.
Duke closes out its preseason slate Friday, Aug. 23 against Coastal Carolina. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m., and admission is free.