Duke's Jordan Wolf, Virginia's Ryan Tucker
April 12, 2013
The Blue Devils (9-4) are hot, having beaten Loyola and North Carolina during a seven-game winning streak. Under coach John Danowski, Duke has owned this series, winning 11 of the past 12 against its Atlantic Coast Conference rival.
Virginia (5-6) staggers into Koskinen Stadium losers of five straight and six of its past seven. The Cavaliers are desperate for a win to preserve hope for an NCAA tournament bid. They are not creating quality shots, too often settling for bombs from the perimeter; Virginia is shooting just 24 percent compared to opponents' 31 percent. The Cavs' minimally invasive patterns do not draw fouls. And the Wahoos goalies rank No. 56 in save percentage (.481).
When I watch Duke, three players stand out. Fleet-footed attackman Jordan Wolf has 50 points after 13 games. Defensive midfielder Will Haus has scooped up 30 ground balls, locked down his man and provided a spark in transition (7,5). Faceoff man Brendan Fowler averages 9.85 ground balls per game (No. 2 nationally) and wins the possession battle. Duke is not running from defense to offense as effectively as in years past and must stay out of the penalty box.