DURHAM, N.C. — Music blared from the Duke men’s lacrosse locker room after the Blue Devils’ victory over North Carolina on Friday night.
On their way back to the bus, UNC players walked through the pouring rain, past the Duke locker room and heard the celebration.
While the Tar Heels never led in the game, after scoring four goals in four minutes to start the third quarter, it seemed as if, even for just a moment, they might have had a chance to be the ones celebrating at the end of the night. Instead, No. 14 UNC fell to No. 4 Duke, 15-8, on the road at Koskinen Stadium.
North Carolina went down at the half, 9-4, due to the compact Blue Devils defense. Duke goalkeeper William Helm made it so that even if the Tar Heels did get a shot on goal, it would more likely end up in the goalie’s stick rather than in the back of the net.
For the first four minutes of the second half, the Tar Heels grabbed hold of the game. UNC scored four times and got within a goal of Duke.
But, in the end, it was just a quick string of goals and nothing more.
As fast as North Carolina was able to get those four goals, the Duke defense was quick to adjust. For the rest of the game, Helm held it down in the crease. By the end of the night, the graduate goalkeeper had 14 saves.
“He made some good plays and good saves,” UNC head coach Joe Breschi said. “He changed the complexion of the game. I think we got a little anxious too because we had the momentum on our side. We took some bad shots that we weren’t taking earlier so that was unfortunate.”
While Helm shut down the North Carolina offensive attack, the Blue Devils‘ offense started to grow their lead once again.