GREENVILLE, N.C. – The East Carolina lacrosse team dropped a tight contest with No. 18 Duke on Wednesday evening in Johnson Stadium. Ellie Bromley scored four goals in the game and despite being face-guarded for most of the game, Frances Kimel managed a trio of goals and one assist.
If a team can learn anything from a loss, what ECU (8-2, 1-0 AAC) can learn from this one is: Belief. The Pirates are good enough to play with anyone and they showed it on Wednesday.
Duke (5-5) got out of the gates early, leading 6-1 in the first quarter before the Pirates began to climb back into it. It was a game that, despite that healthy first-half advantage for the Blue Devils, was decided by only a handful of plays. One such play came at the end of the first half when Duke ended an ECU run to push their lead back to three going into the break.
After 19 first-half goals for the two teams, the defenses locked in in a goalless third quarter, setting up a high-intensity final 15 minutes. Bromley scored to open that fourth quarter before the Blue Devils managed a pair unanswered. Leah Bestany’s late goal came a little too late and Duke held on for the 13-10 victory.
It was a battle all game. Maddie Jenner dominated on the draw as she has done for her entire career with 13 draw controls – but ECU mitigated her efforts well in the second half. Duke scored some less-than-spectacular goals in less-than ideal situations for the Pirates – but the team donning Purple and Gold found answers to keep themselves in the game.
It was a loss, but it was a top-25 loss and the Pirates remain a stout 8-2 through their first 10 games.
The Pirates won’t have to wait long to get back after it as they host Mercer on Saturday at 12 p.m. in Johnson Stadium.