May 20, 2012; Chester, PA USA; General view of PPL park during the second half of the NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Quarterfinals between the Virginia Cavaliers and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The Fighting Irish won 12-10. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-US PRESSWIRE
What did Duke's 13-0 run over a 26:14 scoreless streak from Colgate look like? This isn't too far off base.
The Blue Devils absolutely drilled the Raiders today to the tune of a 17-6 beating that, if done to an animal, would have resulted in a PETA protest and an apologetic press conference days later as an act of contrition. Rob Rotanz led the way for Duke with five goals and one assist, but everyone in blue and white kind of had a big ol' day that requires a Certificate of Achievement in the Field of Whipping Folks. Especially notable was the performance of C.J. Costabile, the Tewaaraton finalist, who had 15 groundballs, a caused turnover, and ate Colgate's soul at the dot with his 14-20 performance on the whistle.
It was one of those games where, if you're the Raiders, you don't just burn the tape after the game; you pretend that it doesn't exist and say "Who?" when someone encourages you to invite it to the family reunion. Peter Baum caused little havoc on the day -- which may be the story of the season -- with his one point performance, thanks to the work that Henry Lobb, Costabile, and Mike Manley did to control him and his offensive machine. With Colgate struggling to get anything together with the bean, Duke took complete control of the game, getting the ball wherever they wanted and rifling so many shots past Conor Murphy that the sophomore keeper probably wondered what he did to make the Devils so mad at him (other than, you know, merely existing). It was an experiment in testing the limits of one's resolve, and Duke pushed so far past the envelope that the Raiders may start the 2013 season with a 2-0 deficit.
With the win, Duke now looks like a serious contender for Memorial Monday. The Blue Devils will face Maryland next Saturday at Gillette Stadium (a rematch from last year's national semifinals), rekindling a rivalry that will likely turn Testudo Times into a shark that catches the smell of blood and goes on the chase. Duke has faced the Terrapins twice this season, losing the first matchup (10-7) in College Park and evening the score in the ACC Tournament in a 6-5 bare-knuckled brawl. There may not be an offensive team with more pipebomb capabilities than the Devils at Championship Weekend (Loyola is in the argument), and if Duke's defense can turn in the performance that it did against Colgate, there may not be a more dangerous team other than the top-seeded Greyhounds.
The only question is how the Blue Devils will react to Maryland's leisurely tempo. (Probably angrily.)
Possession Margin: +8 (Duke)
Unadjusted Duke Offensive Efficiency: 40.48
Duke's Shots per Offensive Possession: 0.98
Colgate Defensive Assist Rate: 28.57
Saves: 11 -- Duke; 9 -- Colgate
Faceoffs: 15 -- Duke; 11 -- Colgate
Turnovers: 23 -- Colgate; 13 -- Duke