Behind Marlatt's career-high five goals, No. 3 Notre Dame downs No. 4 Duke
DURHAM, N.C. -- Third-ranked Notre Dame scored the first six goals of the game and never looked back in a 13-5 season-opening victory against No. 4 Duke on Saturday at a snowy Koskinen Stadium. Junior midfielder Jim Marlatt spearheaded the Irish attack with a career-high five goals.
Notre Dame (1-0) also received a major offensive contribution from freshman attackman Matt Kavanagh, who netted four goals. Senior attackman Sean Rogers and senior midfielder Steve Murphy both scored twice for the Fighting Irish. Marlatt and Kavanagh also chipped in one assist apiece.
The Notre Dame defense, which led the nation last season in goals-against average, stymied a Duke offense that averaged 16.5 goals per game in its first two contests this season. Senior goalie John Kemp made 10 saves for the Fighting Irish.
"I felt our defense played really smart [Saturday] and John Kemp was terrific in goal," Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan said.
Marlatt opened the game's scoring with 8:56 left in the opening quarter. Murphy made it 2-0 in favor of the Irish two minutes later. Notre Dame had a two-goal edge at the end of the first quarter.
Kavanagh registered his first collegiate goal in the early stages of the second quarter with an assist from Ryan Foley. Murphy used an assist from Nick Ossello to put home his second goal and make it 4-0 in favor of the Fighting Irish. Murphy's two goals matched a career-high output.
Another Kavanagh goal midway through the second quarter pushed the lead to five and Marlatt made it 6-0 with 2:55 left in the opening half. Marlatt assisted on the Kavanagh goal, while Will Corrigan picked up the assist on Marlatt's tally.
Duke (1-2) finally cracked the scoring column with 39 seconds remaining in the half on a Myles Jones score. The Blue Devil celebration was short-lived as Marlatt and Kavanagh both scored in the final 13 seconds of the half.
"I thought last year against [Duke] we got off to a terrible start, but we were able to hang on and win by competing really hard," Corrigan said. "[Saturday], we played really well and we competed really hard. I felt their game plan was to force us into making plays and we did."
The Blue Devils opened the second half with three unanswered goals from Jordan Wolf, Josh Offit and Jake Tripucka to make it a four-goal affair (8-4) with 8:20 left in the third quarter.
Notre Dame responded with a 4-0 run of its own. Rogers began the surge at the 5:42 mark of the third period and Marlatt's fourth goal, which was assisted by Kavanagh, gave the Irish a 10-4 advantage by the end of the quarter.
Goals from Rogers and Kavanagh gave Notre Dame an eight-goal cushion (12-4) with 6:32 left to play. Following a Blue Devil goal from Offit, Marlatt put the finishing touches on the victory with his fifth goal of the day.
Marlatt's five goals were the most for a Notre Dame player since David Earl scored five times against Princeton in the first round of the 2010 NCAA Championship. Notre Dame's 13 goals were the most for the Irish in a season opener since a 14-6 win against Penn State in 2005.
Notre Dame outshot Duke 37-29. Duke's Dan Wigrizer picked up the loss. He allowed eight goals, while making six saves in 46 minutes of action. Ben Krebs and Kyle Turri also saw time in goal for the Blue Devils. Duke won 15 of 22 faceoff attempts. Notre Dame junior Liam O'Connor was 7-for-18 in the faceoff circle.
The Fighting Irish have won a program-record 11 consecutive season openers. Notre Dame is 20-5 in season openers under Corrigan.
"I'm not really sure what that says about our team [winning 11 consecutive season openers], but I am happy for this group to start 1-0 because they worked really hard in the offseason," Corrigan said.
This is the fourth season in a row that Notre Dame has opened with a victory against Duke. Notre Dame bested the Blue Devils 7-3 last season at Arlotta Stadium. Notre Dame is 3-0 in its last three trips to Duke.