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Courtesy: David Welch
No. 1 Duke Ready for Top Five Matchup Friday
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 02/15/2018
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Game 4

No. 1 Duke (3-0) vs. No. 4 Denver (1-0)

February 16, 2018 | 5 p.m. | ESPNU

Durham, N.C. | Koskinen Stadium


WatchESPN | Live Stats | Twitter | Game Notes


Setting the Scene

  • Duke welcomes No. 4 Denver to town in the season’s first top five matchup nationally. The Blue Devils are playing their fourth game and the Pioneers their second.
  • The Blue Devils are No. 1 in all the polls on the strength of their 3-0 start.


The Series History

  • Duke and Denver are meeting for the 13th time with the series standing 6-6 overall. The Pioneers are 6-4 in the previous 10 matchups and have won the past three games.
  • Duke’s last win was in the 2014 NCAA semifinals. The Blue Devils also defeated the Pioneers in the 2014 regular season.


Duke – Denver By the Numbers

15 – Different goal scorers already this season, including nine with multiple tallies after three games

12.33 – Average margin of victory for Duke after its first three wins - 18-4 over Air Force, 18-6 over High Point and 19-8 vs. Jacksonville

265 – Career points for Justin Guterding, good for fourth on the Duke scoring chart

58 – Straight games with a point for senior Justin Guterding, the longest among Division I players

768 – Combined victories between head coaches John Danowski and Bill Tierney, the two winningest coaches in Division I lacrosse history

0 – Goals allowed by Duke in first quarters this season

.674 – Trevor Baptiste’s faceoff win percentage, 60-of-89, in the three games against the Blue Devils

12-13 – Duke’s record in top-five matchups since 2007


Wins Leaders Meet in Durham

  • The nation’s top two winningest Division I coaches will meet again Friday evening. Duke head coach John Danowski holds the top spot in the records book with 386 career victories, while Denver leader Bill Tierney is right behind him with 382.
  • Between them they own 768 victories and 10 NCAA titles – Tierney with seven (six with Princeton and one with Denver) and Danowski with three.
  • Danowski is 8-13 all-time against Tierney during his career – 3-6 at Duke versus Denver and 5-7 at Hofstra versus Princeton.


Duke in Top Five Matchups

  • When Duke and Denver meet Friday evening, it will be the 26th top five meeting for the Blue Devils since 2007. The Blue Devils are 12-13 when both teams are ranked among the top five and 6-5 when ranked higher.
  • They are 22-23 all-time against top-five foes since 2007, going 10-10 against top-five foes when ranked sixth or lower.


Last Time Out

  • Headlined by Justin Guterding’s four tallies, five Blue Devils scored multiple goals as No. 2 Duke defeated visiting Jacksonville, 19-8, last Saturday. Rookie Joe Robertson added three goals and five assists as he and Guterding combined for 17 points on the day.
  • Defensively, Duke was excellent in holding Jacksonville to just 24 shots overall and only three in the first quarter. The Blue Devils finished the day with 12 caused turnovers and won the ground ball battle 42-30 despite winning just 12-of-30 faceoffs.
  • The 55 goals in the first three games to start a season are the most by a Duke team under head coach John Danowski, while the 19 goals allowed are the fewest.


Preseason Facts


Last Time We Met

  • Top-ranked Denver scored three goals in a span of 1:21 in the fourth quarter to pull away from the 14th-ranked Blue Devils for a 14-9 victory in Denver last year. The game featured four ties and two lead changes with the Pioneers outscoring Duke 7-2 in the final period.
  • Jack Bruckner led Duke with three points from two goals and an assist, while Justin Guterding and John Prendergast both had two tallies. In goal, Danny Fowler made 11 stops in a solid outing.
  • Connor Cannizzaro led all scorers with four goals and six points, while Trevor Baptiste won 17-of-25 faceoffs and added a goal.
  • Denver and Duke were tied 7-7 going into the fourth quarter before the Pioneers went on the 3-0 run and the Blue Devils had to chase the game at the end, resulting in the five-goal margin.


Scouting Denver

  • Denver comes to Durham after a season-opening 11-5 win at Air Force in a snow storm. The Pioneers were led by Austin French’s five points (3g, 2a), while Colton McCaffrey had two goals and an assist. Eight different Pioneers scored goals. Denver led 7-0 at halftime, holding the Falcons scoreless for 31:06.
  • Trevor Baptiste is the nation’s top faceoff specialist after winning 297-of-399 faceoffs for a .744 win percentage at the X. His win percentage was fifth in NCAA history, while the 297 wins were 10th all-time. He won 9-of-18 against Air Force despite the snow-covered field.
  • Alex Ready was in goal for the Pioneers and made nine saves on 14 shots. Dylan Gaines led the defense with two caused turnovers and six ground balls.


Up Next

  • Following Friday’s game against Denver, Duke will hit the road for the first time to take on No. 19 Penn Feb. 24 at 3 p.m. It will start a stretch of four of five games on the road for the Blue Devils that culminates March 18 at Cleveland State.