No. 10 Virginia Set for Rematch with No. 6 Duke in ACC Tournament
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Virginia Cavaliers (8-4, 1-2 ACC) dropped to the No. 10 spot in the USILA coaches poll and No. 9 in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media poll this week after losing a tight contest at Duke on Saturday, 13-11. UVa gets the chance for retribution only six days later at the 2011 ACC Tournament, as the Cavaliers earned the No. 4 seed and will face the top-seeded Duke Blue Devils (10-4, 3-0 ACC) inside Koskinen Stadium in Durham, N.C.. Duke is ranked No. 6 in the coaches poll and No. 5 in the media poll. Faceoff is set for 7:30 p.m. Live stats will be available on VirginiaSports.com.
There will be a live radio broadcast in the Charlottesville area on WINA 1070 AM, which will be simulcast as an audio webcast on VirginiaSports.com through Virginia Sports Online Radio. John Freeman will bring the play-by-play and Doug Tarring will provide the analysis.
The ACC Network on theACC.com will have a live webcast of the game with Randy Cox calling the play-by-play and Dean Linke providing analysis.
Virginia is 19-16 all-time at the ACC Tournament since the inception of the event in 1989. The Cavaliers are 7-5 against Duke all-time in the ACC Tournament and have faced the Blue Devils in each of the last four tournaments. The Cavaliers are 4-2 all-time against the Blue Devils in the semifinal round of the ACC Tournament, with the last win coming last season in College Park, 16-12. Prior to that win in 2010, the last win came in 1998 when UVa topped the Blue Devils 11-9 at Klöckner Stadium.
Saturday marks the 75th all-time meeting between the Cavaliers and the Blue Devils, a series the Cavaliers own a 49-25 advantage in since 1938. The 49 victories equal the most UVa has against any opponent in program history, but the Blue Devils have won 10 of the last 11 meetings, including the most recent meeting on Saturday. This is the second year in a row that UVa and Duke have faced each other only six days after the regular season matchup. UVa won the second matchup on the way to its 17th ACC title last year.
Virginia head coach Dom Starsia brings 324 career victories into the contest, needing three more triumphs to pass Jack Emmer (326) for most victories by a head coach while at a NCAA Division I school.
Steele Stanwick leads UVa with 44 points and 21 assists, while scoring 23 goals. Chris Bocklet is tops on the team with 29 goals and has 33 points. Bocklet currently leads the nation with his active consecutive game goal streak, tallying at least one score in his last 30 contests. Colin Briggs is next on the team with 20 goals, while Shamel and Rhamel Bratton round out the top scorers with 19 and 16 goals, respectively. Chris LaPierre leads the team with 70 ground balls through the first 12 games, and through 11 games (65) bested Adam Ghitelman’s 2010 team-best of 62 in 18 games.
Ghitelman, the 2010 ACC Tournament MVP, has 45 career wins in the cage and is in a tie with Cornell’s Matt McMonagle (2004-07) for No. 5 all-time at the NCAA Division I level. Ghitelman is saving 54.6 percent of shots against him and registering a 9.63 goals against average this season.
Duke head coach John Danowski is in his fifth season at Duke and returns 29 letterwinners and six starters off of last season’s NCAA title team that went 16-4. Zach Howell leads Duke with 34 goals and 46 points. Jordan Wolf has a team-high 14 assists to go with his 22 goals. Christian Walsh and current ACC Player of the Week Robert Rotanz rounds out the Duke top performers with 18 goals. Dan Wigrizer has 12 starts in the cage for Duke and is saving 53.8 percent of the shots against him and posting a 9.66 goals against average.
The victor of Friday’s contest will return to Koskinen Stadium on Sunday to face the winner of No. 2 seed North Carolina vs. No. 3 seed Maryland. The ACC Championship final will faceoff at 3:30 p.m.