Duke Stuns Team USA Men at Challenge; Other Results

ORLANDO, Fla. On Sunday, Jan. 31, Duke, ranked No. 1 in Lacrosse Magazine's Division I poll, beat the U.S. men's national team. Duke erased an early five-goal deficit and Max Quinzani scored the game-winning goal with 5.8 seconds remaining to lift the Blue Devils to a 9-8 victory over the U.S. men's national team in the Champion Challenge finale at Disney's Wide World of Sports.

The U.S. had possession with less than a minute remaining and the game tied at 8, but Kyle Dixon stumbled near the restraining line and the ball popped loose. Duke long pole Parker McKee, a member of the 40-man U.S. training team who played for Team USA in its win Saturday over Army, emerged from the scrum with the ground ball and carried it into the offensive end. He fed Quinzani, who had time and room to shoot on the right wing. Quinzani fired a laser to U.S. goalie Adam Fullerton's right side to deliver the clinching goal in the upset.

After a Duke violation on the subsequent faceoff, Team USA had one last chance. Paul Rabil swam into the offensive zone and fed Brendan Mundorf on the crease, but Mundorf could not break the shackles of Duke's long poles to get a shot off as time expired.

The game started as a tale of two quarters. The U.S. dominated the first, jumping to a 5-0 lead on the back of a stifling defense -- spearheaded by an especially disruptive effort from Joe Cinosky -- and two goals each from Matt Zash and Drew Westervelt. Matt Striebel also scored on a rare invert dodge from behind.

Duke did not back down however. Freshman Josh Offit, starting on attack because Lacrosse Magazine Preseason Player of the Year Ned Crotty suited up for Team USA, got the Blue Devils on the board 59 seconds into the second quarter. Three minutes later, Offit struck agin, this time off a feed from Zach Howell as he sneaked around the left pipe unnoticed.

Stephen Coyle made it 5-3 on a nifty question mark dodge and blistering shot at the 14:52 mark. Will McKee brought the Blue Devils within one when he beat U.S. long pole Eric Martin to the crease. Offit tied it when he lost U.S. defender Nick O'Hara on a slick roll from behind the cage with 6:42 remaining.

The U.S. settled down with disciplined defense and patient offensive possessions in the third quarter, opening up a 7-5 lead on goals by Westervelt and Rabil.

But a spat of Team USA penalties in the fourth quarter, including three served simultaneously, opened the door for Duke's comeback. Zach Howell connected on consecutive extra-man opportunities to tie the game at 7 with 10:41 remaining.

Mundorf put the U.S. back up by one when he finished a cross-crease feed from Ryan Boyle with 8:59 remaining, but Duke responded when Steve Schoeffel went top shelf on Fullerton from the right alley at the 5:46 mark.

The Blue Devils defense, minus All-American Mike Manley (hamstring) and long stick midfielder CJ Costabile (foot), held up on a U.S. extra-man opportunity to set up the game's wild final sequence.

Westervelt finished with three goals and an assist for Team USA. Offit, the Champion Challenge MVP, paced Duke with three goals, while Howell had two goals and an assist. Fullerton made five saves in the second half.

Duke's goalie situation was muddied further this week when junior Sean Brady was suspended due to "conduct unbecoming a team member," according to a statement. Fifth-year senior Devon Sherwood got the start in goal, but was quickly relieved by Mike Rock. Freshman Dan Wigrizer then relieved Rock. Wigrizer was hampered by mononucleosis at the beginning of preseason.

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