Pat Bernard – Field Correspondent, Deveraux Sports/Edge of Philly Sports
Notre Dame faced off against Duke University in the NCAA Division I Lacrosse Championship at Lincoln Financial Field on Monday. Both teams came off thrilling overtime victories in the semifinals. The Fighting Irish beat Virginia, and the Blue Devils beat Penn State to advance to the championship game. Notre Dame built a 6-1 halftime lead, and held off a third-quarter charge by Duke to win 13-9, capturing their first NCAA lacrosse title.
Entenmann, Notre Dame defense hold Williams & Co. in check
Duke employed great physicality on defense at the start of the game, but continuously left the middle of the field wide open. Notre Dame exploited that soft spot, with six different players finding the back of the net as they jumped out to a surprising 6-1 halftime lead. Garrett Leadmon, who scored the controversial game-wining goal in overtime against Penn State, was the lone scorer for the Blue Devils in the first half.
Notre Dame goaltender Liam Entenmann definitely brought his A-game. He made some big time stops, especially on Duke’s top two scorers, Dyson Williams (who is projected to be #1 pick in the 2023 NLL Entry Draft) and Brennan O’Neill. Both attackmen were kept in check and off the scoreboard by Entenmann and the Fighting Irish defense in the first half.
However, Duke’s offense opened the floodgates to start the second half. Coming out like a ball of fire, the Blue Devils scored 6 of the next 7 goals to tie the game at 7-7. Williams and O’Neill finally got on the board during the run, and Leadmon scored his second of the game. Duke unloaded their offensive firepower primarily from the outside perimeters, similar to what had worked against Penn State in the semifinal.
But late in the third Entenmann would recover, reading Duke’s offense and seeing the shots coming his way. Notre Dame would tack on two more goals in the final 30 seconds of the third quarter for a 9-7 lead. They would then outscore Duke 4-2 in the final frame for their first ever title. Six Notre Dame players had two goals each in the victory, while Leadmon was the only Duke player with multiple goals. Entenmann finished with 18 saves on the day, taking home Most Outstanding Player honors for the championship game.
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Pat Bernard has four years of podcasting. His first year with the Pattison Ave Phantics and four years running Devereaux Sports. Now currently, both Devereaux Sports and Edge of Sports. Pat is a for 6 Philly sports fan. Flyers, Phillies, Eagles, Sixers, Wings, and Union. The Gobbler is a former pro wrestler and ACPW Hall of Famer! He is originally out of Ambler from Northeast Philly (by the Tacony Bridge). Pat is a credentialed Philadelphia Wings Beat Reported under Edge of Philly Sports.