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Syracuse Lacrosse: Previewing the Duke Blue Devils

The Syracuse Orange host the Duke Blue Devils on Saturday at 1:30 PM. The game can be seen nationally on ESPNU but here is the preview.

2014 NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Championship Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images


School: Duke

Mascot: Blue Devils

Coach: John Danowski

Location: Durham, NC

Conference: ACC

Game Location: Carrier Dome

Game Time: 1:30 PM

Television/Radio: ESPNU/TK99/105


All-Time Syracuse Record Vs. Opponent: 10-6

Previous Matchup: 14-8 Syracuse Win in ACC Championship

Opponent Ranking: #11

Quick Facts

2017 Record: 7-2

2017 Conference Record: 0-0

2016 Conference Postseason Results: Lost to Syracuse in ACC Championship

2016 NCAA Tournament Postseason Results: Lost in First Round of NCAAT to Loyola

2017 Team Statistics

Total Goals– Shot Attempts: 116-331

Total Opponent Goals– Shot Attempts: 68-274

EMO Goals (Percentage): 14 (.560)

EMO Goals Against (Percentage): 8 (.296)

Team Shooting Percentage: .350

Opponent Shooting Percentage: .248

Shots on Goal Percentage: .653

Opponent Shots on Goal Percentage: .569

Groundballs: 262

Opponent Groundballs: 213

Turnovers: 102

Caused Turnovers: 53

Faceoffs: 111-216

Clearing Percentage: 148-170 (.871)

Opponent Clearing Percentage: 120-142 (.845)

Penalties: 22 (22:00)

Surprisingly, the Duke Blue Devils and Syracuse Orange have only faced off 16 times in history. While the first matchup dates back to 1938 with a 17-5 Syracuse win, the next game took place in 1978. The Orange hold a 10-6 advantage going 4-1 since the start of the 2015 season.

The Duke Blue Devils are on a five game win streak entering Saturday’s game. This is a team that puts up a ton of points in its games and is one of the best man-up squads in division I. The Dukies do a great job of moving the ball and Syracuse will need to be weary of the off-ball movement well.


Watch out for the attack on the ride, the Blue Devils do a great job at cuasing turnovers on opponent clears. The Duke man-up is second in the nation scoring on .560 percent of all EMOs. Additionally, Duke is ninth in assists per game at 8.22. THe Blue Devils do a good job of moving the ball. This attack grouping does a great job of changing up release points and making opposing goalies move.

Jack Bruckner has started every game since the beginning of his sophomore year and had at least one point in every game his sophomore, junior, and senior years. He has 17 groundballs, 21 goals and 11 assists so far this season. Look out for Bruckner as he moves without the ball. He can certainly explode as he had a seven goal game against Virginia in 2015. Justin Guterding is the top offensive threat for Duke. He currently leads his team in goals, assists, and points with 25, 21, and 46 respectively. He also has the second best shooting percentage on the team amongst players with more than 10 shots. Guterding is 8th nationally in assists and points per game and 16th in goals per game. He had five goals in Duke’s win over Georgetown. Joey Manown is the only freshman on the starting attack line. He was rated as the seventh best incoming freshman by Inside Lacrosse and has certainly produced for the Blue Devils with 14 goals and six assists. He is not afraid to shoot at tough angles.


The starting Duke midfield is very young. Sophomore John Prendergast had two goals and an assist last year as a freshman, but this year has five goals and two assists through nine games. Kevin Quigley is one of three siblings who play college lacrosse. His twin brother plays at Villanova, while his sisters play for High Point and Elon. The freshman has nine goals thus far in the season. Sophomore Brad Smith has surpassed all of his freshman year statistics grabbing 10 goals and 10 assists so far this year. He is tied at first in the nation in individual man-up goals with five.


Kyle Rowe is the top faceoff guy for Duke and holds a .558 save percentage this season good enough for 31st in division I. Additionally, Rowe is 12th in the country in groundballs per game with 55. The senior played his freshman ball at Stony Brook before transferring to Duke.


The defense doesn’t cause a lot of turnovers but has the seventh best scoring defense in college lacrosse this year. Cade Van Raaphorst may be the top defenseman for the Blue Devils. He played in 14 games in his freshman year and returns for his sophomore season starting each game this year. I would expect Cade to line up with Nick Mariano or Brendan Bomberry. He leads the Blue Devils in caused turnovers with 11. Senior Brian Dunne started each game in his sophomore season but had a bit of a down year in his junior year starting just six games in 2016. This year the Melville, NY native has four caused turnovers and 10 groundballs. Freshman JT Giles-Harris has five caused turnovers and 14 groundballs this year and will be the third close defenseman.


Danny Fowler is not asked to make a lot of saves per game, but he is 17th in GAA in the country and 20th in save percentage. Fowler started nine games as a redshirt sophomore and all 19 games as a redshirt junior. The kid is an absolute athlete and has also seen the field playing on special teams for the Duke football team.

The Syracuse Orange host the Duke Blue Devils on Saturday at 1:30 PM in the Carrier Dome. The game can be seen on ESPNU and heard on TK99/105. Of course you can also follow me @Orangelax for game updates.