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Notre Dame Women’s Lacrosse: #9 Irish’s Second Half Surge Seals Win vs #8 Duke

Irish erase 3-goal halftime deficit to down Duke in Durham.

Cortney Fortunato, ND women's lacrosse @FightingIrish

The Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team again dominated a second half, erasing a three-goal halftime deficit to knock off Duke, 12-11, in a matchup of two top 10 teams at Koskinen Stadium in Durham.

The Irish (6-1, 1-0 ACC) never led until 1:29 remaining in the game, when senior attacker Grace Muller found the back of the net for her 10th goal of the season. The Irish outshot the Blue Devils, 32-22, in the game. Junior midfielder Molly Cobb scored four goals in the victory; Duke sophomore attacker Olivia Jenner had four for the losing team.

Notre Dame caught its biggest break with 12 minutes left when Jenner was whistled for a dangerous shot, disallowing what would have been the Blue Devils’ 10th goal. Instead of re-establishing a two goal margin, Jenner watched helplessly as Cobb scored her fourth goal - and second in a row - to tie the game at 9.

The Blue Devils (4-1, 0-1 ACC), who excelled in transition all day, retook the lead one minute after Cobb’s tying goal. The teams traded goals until Muller’s score finally put the Irish in the lead for good.

The Irish had outscored its opponents 51-17 in second halves entering today’s game. Their comeback was helped considerably by forcing 11 Blue Devil turnovers in the final period, while the Irish only gave it away five times.

The Irish tied the Blue Devils in draw controls, despite Notre Dame losing senior midfielder Casey Pearsall early in the second half. Pearsall drew two yellow cards and was ejected.

Cortney Fortunato was held without a goal or assist, a rarity for the Irish senior attacker.

Sophomore Samantha Giacolone had six saves in the winning effort. The Irish are now 3-2 versus the Blue Devils since joining the ACC, although they are 5-11 against Duke overall.