Duke LAX: Men & Women Both Draw Loyola In First Round of NCAA Tournament

Duke University earned an at-large berth in the 2016 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament and will travel to play No. 7 seed Loyola Saturday, May 14 at 12 p.m., on ESPNU. The Blue Devils are making their 20th appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students and $5 for groups of 20-plus. Tickets may be purchased in advance through the Loyola Ticket Office by phone (410-617-1420), or the day of the game at the Ridley Athletic Complex Box Office, which opens two hours prior to faceoff.

The three-time NCAA Champion Blue Devils will be on the road for the first time under head coach John Danowski and for just the third time in the 20 appearances. Duke is 32-16 all-time in NCAA postseason play and 14-5 in first-round games. It will be the third meeting between Duke and Loyola the NCAA Tournament with the Blue Devils holding a 2-0 record.

Duke and the Greyhounds last squared off in the NCAA Tournament in 2013, a thrilling 12-11 double overtime victory en route to the program’s second NCAA title. Loyola captured the 2012 national championship.

Duke finished the regular season with an 11-7 record, marking the 10th straight season the Blue Devils amassed at least 11 wins. The Blue Devils advanced to the ACC Championship title game for the second consecutive season, falling to the NCAA Tournament’s No. 8 seed Syracuse.

Justin Guterding and Myles Jones headline the offense with 69 and 67 points, respectively. Deemer Class is the top goal scorer with a Duke midfield record 49 goals and 60 points overall. Guterding is one point shy of becoming the first Blue Devil in program history to record 70 points in each of his first two seasons.

Defensively, the Blue Devils have shown great improvement in the past six games. Anchored by junior Danny Fowler between the pipes, Duke is allowing just 8.00 goals per game in the previous six outings. Fowler has a 7.90 goals against average and a .600 save percentage in that span.

Overall, Fowler sports a 9.60 goals against average and a .524 save percentage. Ethan Powley leads the close defense group with 21 caused turnovers, while Jamie Ikeda has 14.

Junior Kyle Rowe is one of the premier faceoff specialists in the nation, sporting a .630 win percentage at the X and picking up 136 ground balls. He is 18 wins away from becoming the second Duke player to win 600 career faceoffs.

Duke bested Loyola during the regular season, 15-6, behind eight points from Jones and a 19-of-23 day for Rowe at the draw.

The winner of the first round game will advance to the NCAA quarterfinals to take on the winner between Denver and either Towson or Hobart from the play-in game.

The Duke women’s lacrosse team will take on Loyola (Md.) in an NCAA first round matchup Friday at 5 p.m. in Chapel Hill, N.C.

The Blue Devils (10-8) received an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament while the Greyhounds (14-5) automatically qualified after capturing their third consecutive Patriot League title Sunday. The squads will square off Friday at the Tar Heels’ Fetzer Field. Host and No. 3 seed North Carolina (16-2) will face the advancing team Sunday at 1 p.m. with a trip to the NCAA quarterfinals on the line.

Duke and Loyola will meet for just the fourth time overall and first time since 2005 in Chapel Hill. The Greyhounds hold a 2-1 edge in the all-time series, and took the only other NCAA meeting between the teams – a 7-6 decision in the quarterfinals of the 2001 tournament. The Blue Devils and the Greyhounds have not previously squared off on a neutral field.

Duke received its first NCAA Tournament bid in 1998 and has made an appearance every year since. The program’s 19 consecutive tournament trips mark the third-longest streak in the country behind only Maryland (27) and Virginia (21). Under the direction of head coach Kerstin Kimel, the Blue Devils are 13-3 in NCAA first round action and 23-18 all-time in NCAA competition. Duke reached the NCAA semifinals for the seventh time in program history in 2015 following previous trips in 1999, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011.

The Blue Devils have been ranked among the top 15 teams in the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) poll the entire spring and feature one of the top defenses in the ACC, allowing just 8.28 goals per contest. Senior goalkeeper Kelsey Duryea has ranked among the nation’s leaders in save percentage for much of the season and was joined in earning All-ACC honors by sophomore midfielder Maddie Crutchfield (first team), junior defender Maura Schwitter (first team) and sophomore attacker Kyra Harney (first team). Crutchfield and Duryea were also recently tabbed two of 25 nominees for the 2016 Tewaaraton Award.

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