Today’s game is over. Let’s head on over to the Big Board!
I think many people expected Duke to crush Cleveland State in this one, and that’s what happened. The Blue Devils put a 22 number up on the first-year Vikings, but only led 6-3 at the end of the first quarter.
A number of Blue Devils had big days, especially a 10-point performance by Justin Guterding, who had six goals and four assists on the day. Jack Bruckner had five goals and an assist for the afternoon, while Brad Smith recorded a hat-trick and dished out one assist. Joey Manown and freshman Ryan Hastings had a pair of goals. Manown did start at attack for this game, which was something I wanted to see after Friday’s win over High Point.
Duke did lose the face-off battle, going 13-of-31 on the day, but there was no Kyle Rowe for the Blue Devils. Teddy Henderson and Peter Welch took the majority of the draws for Duke. Danny Fowler did start in goal for the Blue Devils, but gave up five goals in 22:43 of game time, before being replaced by Turner Uppgren. Is there something up with Duke’s defense, which has a player in Cade Van Raaphorst with limited playing time last year and a freshman in JT Giles-Harris, or is it Fowler’s surgery getting to him? Brian Dunne was the third starter at defense over Greg Pelton as well. Who knows how Fowler and the defense will look against Denver on Saturday, but that looks like it’s going be a big question to answer in Durham.
Meanwhile for Cleveland State, Danny Tesler and Jake Lewis both recorded a pair of goals for the Vikings, with Nick Wendel, Jack Frickleton, and Ethan Peterson also scoring in the loss. Goaltender Caleb Espinoza made nine saves.
The Vikings take on two Division III opponents in Baldwin Wallace and John Carroll next weekend at home. It should be great experience for the team to get better, and hopefully earn their first NCAA win, granted it’s not against Division I competition. But even though they lost big to Duke, I think the Vikings continued to progress in this game.
We’ll have three games on the first Tuesday of the regular season, with four teams opening up their seasons. Georgetown-High Point and Stony Brook-Sacred Heart get underway at 3 pm, while the top game of the night will be Maryland taking on St. Joe’s on Hawk Hill.