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Freshmen lead No. 3 Blue Devils to 2-1 victory in season opener

Posted Sunday, August 27, 2006

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DURHAM, N.C. - The No. 3 Duke Field Hockey team opened its 2006 season with a 2-1 victory over No. 14 Louisville in Saturday’s Champions Tournament at Williams Field, behind goals from freshmen Lauren Amicucci and Lauren Miller.

The Blue Devils and Cardinals were each held scoreless throughout the first half, with each team’s goalie picking up four saves. Louisville junior Janelle Avila recorded the first goal of the game at 30:21 in the second half, as she slipped an unassisted shot passed the Duke goalkeeper to put the Cardinals up 1-0.

Duke’s offense battled back ten minutes later as sophomore Lauren Suchoski found Amicucci near the net and the freshman snuck a shot past Louisville’s goalkeeper to tie the score at one apiece. The goal was Amicucci’s first of her collegiate career.

With five minutes remaining in the contest, the Duke offensive unit set up for what would be its seventh penalty corner of the game and sixth of the half. Sophomore Marian Dickinson pushed the ball out to freshman Brooke Patterson, who then dished it out to Miller. Miller then slammed a shot past the Cardinal keeper to record her first collegiate goal and put the Blue Devils up 2-1.

Blue Devil goalie, junior Caitlin Williams, played all 70 minutes for Duke, picking up five saves on the day. The Duke defense allowed the Cardinals to get just seven shots off, while the Duke offense made 21 attempts at the net. Duke, now 1-0 on the season, also gave just one penalty corner opportunity to the Cardinals who fall to 0-1 early in regular-season action.

“We had a preseason where we were very motivated played really hard, and surprisingly we came into the game a little complacent,” said head coach Beth Bozman. “But we turned things around in the second half and showed how we could play.”

The Blue Devils will meet Delaware tomorrow at 2 p.m. in the final game of the Champions Tournament, as earlier action on Saturday saw the Blue Hens upset No. 16 Michigan State, 5-4. The Spartans will face Louisville Sunday at 11:30 a.m. in the first game of the final day of tournament action.

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