Leading 13-9 midway through the third quarter in a must-win game, the Virginia men’s lacrosse team looked poised to halt its five-game skid against No. 7 Duke at Koskinen Stadium. The Blue Devils, however, would take control of the high-scoring contest late in the game, using a 10-1 run to come away with a 19-16 victory in both teams’ final regular season conference game Friday.
Junior attackman Mark Cockerton led all scorers with six goals, while senior midfielder Matt White added four goals and an assist after being held without a goal for the previous three games. Junior attackman Nick O’Reilly posted two goals and a team-high four assists.
Both teams scored five goals in the first quarter and four in the second to head into the break knotted at 9-9. Virginia (5-7, 0-3 ACC) would then score four consecutive goals in the first 5:04 of the third quarter to take the largest lead of the game up to that point.
Duke (10-4, 2-1 ACC) countered by scoring the next three before junior midfielder Rob Emery scored his second of the game to close out the quarter with a 14-12 Cavalier lead.
The Blue Devils had their way with the Cavaliers in the fourth quarter, scoring seven unanswered goals in the period’s first 11:10 to take a decisive 19-14 lead.
Though White and Cockerton would each find the net again before the end of the game, Virginia’s late rally was not enough to overcome the five-goal deficit. Duke outshot Virginia 17-6 in the fourth quarter and 55-40 for the game, marking the first time an opponent has outshot the Cavaliers this season.
Virginia will conclude its regular season against Bellarmine at Klöckner Stadium Saturday before heading to Chapel Hill, N.C. April 26 for the ACC Tournament, where a rematch with No. 1 Maryland awaits them.