#8 Duke Holds Off Late Brown Rally, 9-8

Durham, NC – Brown’s furious fourth quarter rally came up a goal short after a barrage of shots in the game’s final seconds as the Bears dropped a 9-8 decision to eighth-ranked Duke Tuesday afternoon at Koskinen Stedium. The Bears, now 3-4 on the season, outshot the Blue Devils (8-3) by a 15-4 margin in the fourth quarter, and 37-29 overall.

Duke seemingly put the game out of reach by scoring the first two goals of the fourth quarter to grab a 9-5 lead with 8:03 remaining in the game.

The relentless Bears made a frantic comeback bid on consecutive goals by senior Dan O’Brien (7:22), senior Parker Brown (6:17), and freshman Nick Piroli with 29 seconds remaining to trail, 9-8.

The Bears peppered the Duke goal in the final 29 seconds, getting off several shots to tie the game, but were unable to find the back of the next.

Piroli and sophomore Sam Hurster led the Bears attack with two goals and an assist. O’Brian also netted two goals, while sophomore Will Round made eight saves in net for the Bears.

Duke had nine different players score its nine goals, including Jake Tripucka, who had a goal and two assists. Dan Wigrizer made 10 saves for the Blue Devils, including four in the fourth quarter.

Brown had a slew of good scoring opportunities in the opening minutes and got on the scoreboard first on a goal by Johnny DePeters from junior George Sherman with 10:23 left in the opening quarter. Duke tied the game, 1-1, three minutes later on a goal by David Lawson.

Duke grabbed a 2-1 lead at the 2:22 mark, but Piroli tied the game for the Bears a short time later to tie the game, 2-2, after one quarter.

Goals by Duke’s Mike Manley and Jordan Wolf early in the second quarter lifted the Blue Devils to a 4-2 advantage. Hurster netted his 11th goal of the season for Brown with 8:20 left in the second quarter to cut Duke’s lead to 4-3 at the half.

The Blue Devils opened up a three goal advantage, 6-3, on goals by Tripucka and Josh Offit in the opening 2:46 of the second half. O’Brien got the Bears back in the game at the 9:42 mark to cut the Duke advantage to 6-4.

The two teams exchanged goals at the end of the third quarter, with Eddie Loftus scoring for Duke with 14 seconds left, and Hurster netting his second goal of the game with just one second left to trail 7-5.

The Bears return home on Saturday, March 31, hosting Ivy League rival Princeton at Stevenson Field, starting at 3:00 p.m. Brown is playing on the Stevenson Field grass for the first time this season.

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