Category Archives: ACC Tournament

2009 ACC Baseball Championships Coming to Durham

ACC Commissioner John Swofford announced Wednesday that the 2009 ACC Championships will be held at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park in downtown Durham from May 20-24.

It will be the fourth time the 10,000-seat stadium will host the event—DBAP also hosted the ACCs in 1996, 1998 and 1999—and the sixth time the tournament will be held in Durham. The tournament was originally slated to be held in Fenway Park, but an in-house scheduling error pushed its hosting back to 2010.

“We are very excited to reach an agreement with the Durham Bulls Athletic Park to be the host site for the 2009 ACC Baseball Championship,” Swofford said in a release. “We feel fortunate to know that our teams will compete for an ACC Title in a top-rate stadium that is regarded as one of the best in all of minor league baseball.”

In semi-related news, the Bulls play for the Governor’s Cup, the International League Championship, against the Scranton W-B Yankees starting this Thursday at home. First pitch at 7:05.

by Meredith Shiner


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Through The Lens: ACC Lacrosse Final

Check out an expanded slideshow by clicking on one of the photos. All photos by The Chronicle’s online photo editor, Lawson Kurtz.

by Lawson Kurtz

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POSTGAME: No. 1 Duke vs. No. 3 Virginia

POSTGAME Duke 11, Virginia 9. In all, Virginia scored six fourth quarter goals to Duke’s zero, dominating every facet of the game down the stretch. But, alas, it was too little, too late, and the Blue Devils held on by the skin of their noses for their second straight ACC Tourament title and fifth overall. Although Virginia was very productive in the final period, Dan Loftus should still be credited with a great afternoon. The senior held the Cavaliers in check for the vast majority of the game, which proved to be crucial as the eight-goal fourth quarter deficit proved too much to overcome.

The Blue Devils seem exhausted but happy as they receive the ACC Tournament trophy at midfield. We’re also awaiting the announcement of the All-Tournament team and the ACC Tournament MVP.

Virginia: Ben Rubeor, Garrett Billings, Bud Petit, Danny Glading

Duke: Matt Danowski, Parker McKee, Zack Greer, Ned Crotty, Max Quinzani, Tony McDevitt, Nick O’Hara

Tournament MVP: Dan Loftus (17 saves in today’s game)

–by Matthew Iles

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SECOND HALF: No. 1 Duke vs. No. 3 Virginia

End of 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 9. The Cavaliers got their chance, forcing a turnover as they pushed Max Quinzani right to the endline. But a careless pass by Virginia gave the ball right back to Duke. The Blue Devils held on for the waning seconds, as many players seemed to take their first relaxed breath of the last 15 minutes.

0:58, 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 9. Virginia commits a violation on the faceoff, giving Duke possession as time runs off the clock. The Blue Devils were playing stall ball, until longstick defenseman Parker McKee attempted a shot from about five yards outside the crease. The ball sailed wide, but Duke maintained possession after having the closest man to the ball.

Timeout Duke.

1:32 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 9. Whenever Duke has gained control on the offensive end, it has done a terrible job maintaining possession. After giving up the ball quickly once more, Virginia raced down into Duke’s end. Garrett Billings turned the corner from the behind the net and fired a shot off the far post that managed to stay out of the goal.

After a Duke penalty, the Cavaliers showed excellent ball movement as they flipped it around the crease then down low to Ryan Carroll, who dumped it over Loftus’ shoulder for Virgina’s fifth straight goal. Off the faceoff, the Cavaliers moved the ball up to Rubeor, who dodged and buried it from the right side for Virginia’s second goal in ten seconds.

The orange and blue clad fans in Klocker Stadium are standing and cheering with comeback on their minds.

3:20, 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 7. The Blue Devils are playing sloppily, dropping passes and losing control in traffic. Nevertheless, Duke is hanging on. The Cavaliers have gotten plenty of looks, but haven’t been able to score for for minutes. With just more than three minutes left, the four goal deficit is seemingly more and more difficult to overcome all the time.

8:00, 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 7. The momentum is shiftly, and quickly. The Cavaliers Rhamel Bratton stuffed home a shot into the bottom right corner. What seemed at point a Duke blowout has suddenly become a close contest. Virginia trails by just four scores with more than eight to play.

10:00, 4th Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 6. Virginia’s standout attackman Ben Rubeor scores right out of the gate on a man-up opportunity. Dan Loftus turned away another few Virginia shots, including one that deflected off the crossbar, but Virginia got the Klockner Stadium stands shaking when it scored another goal to draw within five.

The referees stopped play briefly when a Duke and Virginia player got tangled up and exchanged words after a big hit. The home fans shout boos when only Virginia’s Max Pomper was relegated to the penalty box. But a Duke turnover results in a Cavalier man-down fast-break. Now Virginia waits patiently for its teammate to return to the field.

End of 3rd Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 4.

The Cavaliers scored, but the bleeding continues. After securing a rebound off a Duke shot, Virginia gave it right back on an errant pass out of bounds.

The home crowd has not given up, getting to its feet after an impressive series of saves from Bud Petit. Max Quinzani bounced it, but Petit dropped to his knees to stop it. The rebound went to Greer, who tried to dump it over the kneeling Petit, but the goalie somehow reached his stick back and deflected the ball away.

Virginia closes out the 3rd quarter on a man-up advantage, but the Cavaliers just run out the clock rather than risk turning over the ball. Virginia will start the first 40 seconds of the 4th quarter with an extra man, but needs a comeback for the ages in order to walk out of here the ACC Tournament champions.

5:35, 3rd Quarter, Duke 11 Virginia 3. Duke scores one of its most impressive goals of the game. During a man-up opportunity, Max Quinzani chases down a loose ball. As he’s picking it up, he’s knocked down to the ground illegally, but keeps fighting. He gets up and weaves through two Cavaliers while maintaining possession, then passes it out to an open Zack Greer, who buries it past Petit.

Virginia is showing its frustration, as it commits another costly penalty. Duke converts the man-up chance deftly, as Ned Crotty finds Matt Danowski up top. Danowski cranks it into the back of the net, adding another few fist pumps as his Blue Devils continue to piles it on.

8:40, 3rd Quarter, Duke 9 Virginia 3. On the few chances Duke has had to get out on the break today, poor passing and a lack of concentration have brought the opportunities to an end.

But the Blue Devils finally get their first fast-break goal of the game, when longstick defenseman Nick O’Hara sprinted down toward the cage, then threw it back out for Matt Danowski. The co-captain wound up and ripped it past Petit. After the goal, Danowski showed some emotion as he pumped his fist emphatically several times.

After Virginia racked up two penalties, the Blue Devils continued to pull away after converting on a two-man-up chance. Danowski sidearmed a shot from the top of the box that bounced off the ground, then off Petit’s foot and up into the net.

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HALFTIME: No. 1 Duke vs. No. 3 Virginia

Halftime, Duke 7 Virginia 3. Both teams forced each other to play out of their element. There have been plenty of big hits, with lacrosse sticks flying in the air and bodies crashing to the ground often. Dan Loftus has outplayed Bud Petit in between the pipes, and that’s been a major difference in the game so far. Although they have not been able to do so frequently, the Blue Devils have succeeded the most when they got into their offensive set and just relaxed. If Duke can get Matt Danowski, Zack Greer and Max Quinzani to contribute like they have all season (they have combined for just two goals and an assist), then it should have no trouble putting away Virginia. But to this point, both players have been relatively quiet.

The Cavaliers are dominating on face-offs, securing 9 of the 12 draws this half. The Blue Devils have also struggled slightly clearing the ball, finishing 9-for-14.

Again, though, as long as Loftus keeps performing as well as he did this half, Duke has a good chance to win this title game. The senior stopped 75 percent of Virginia’s shots on goal, several from point-blank range.

–by Matthew Iles

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FIRST HALF: No. 1 Duke vs. No. 3 Virginia

End of 2nd Quarter, Duke 7 Virginia 3. After corralling a loose ball in the offensive zone and Virginia’s defense out of formation, Steve Schoeffel zipped it across the face of the net to Brad Ross, but Petit made an impressive save on the overhand shot.

Duke’s just 30 minutes away from the 2008 ACC Tournament championship.

3:00, 2nd Quarter, Duke 7 Virginia 3. Cavaliers are trying to get back into the game. Garrett Billings lobbed it into Gavin Gill on a man-up opportunity, and Gill slipped it past Loftus from just outside the crease.

Virginia has done a great job of limiting Duke’s second-chance opportunities. On missed shots, the Cavaliers have beaten the Duke attackmen to the endline several times in their effort to quiet the Blue Devils’ prolific attack.

5:00, 2nd Quarter, Duke 7 Virginia 2. Virginia breaks out of its scoring drought with a score from Garrett Billings. Billings basically rolled it along the ground past Loftus after receiving the pass from former Blue Devil Peter Lamade.

Ned Crotty initiates from behind the cage, where he has been successful so often this season, turns the corner and fires it in for a 7-2 Duke lead. Surprisely, Matt Danowski has been a non-factor to this point

6:41, 2nd Quarter, Duke 6 Virginia 1. UVa goalie Bud Petit has made several mistakes in the clearing game, including a few long passes that resulted in easy turnovers. But he did have a Loftus-like save, stopping a Blue Devil shot from just outside the crease with his ankle.

But Loftus would not be outdone. A Cavalier shot from four yards out looked destined to bounce through Loftus’ legs, but the goalie somehow got his stick on it, stopping the ball dead in the dirt just a few inches short of the goal line. Quite simply, Loftus is playing out of his mind.

Ned Crotty scores Duke’s sixth straight goal of the game, ripping a shot to the top right corner of the cage.Both teams are getting solid shots off, but the difference in the game to this point is the play of Duke’s Dan Loftus.

10:17, 2nd Quarter, Duke 5 Virginia 1. Virginia’s Shamel Bratton dodges off the right goal-line extended, beating his man for a shot from just outside the crease. Somehow, though, Loftus makes the save with his left foot.

About 45 seconds later, Duke continues to take the wind out of the Cavaliers’ sails, as Zack Howell unleashes a shot over Petit’s left shoulder from nearly 15 yards away.

Despite being grossly outnumbered, the Duke faithful is making itself known here in Klockner Stadium.

End of 1st Quarter, Duke 4 Virginia 1. Matt Danowski initiates from behind the cage, first feigning a shot from the goal-line extended, then passing it to an open Zack Greer right in front of the net. Greer stuffed it home, giving Duke a 3-1 lead.

With 8.5 seconds left, Steve Schoeffel drew the defense in when he dodged for the net. After pulling back, he found Max Quinzani standing at the top edge of the crease, and the sophomore attackman spun and dropped it over Petit’s shoulder for the 4-1 first quarter advantage.

2:30 1st Quarter, Duke 2 Virginia 1. Duke has struggled clearing, giving Virginia multiple fast-break looks that have put tremendous pressure on Dan Loftus. But the senior goalie has played magnificently, making at least three stops on hard shots from about five yards out.

These two teams are so fast and so aggressive that the game has been largely played with the ball on the ground. Neither squad has established a rhythm.

6:20 1st Quarter, Duke 2 Virginia 1. Virginia looked impressive in its first offensive possession, as star attackman Ben Rubeor drew the attention of the defense as he ran all the way around the back of the net, then dumped it over a Duke defender to teammate Ryan Carrol for a point-blank shot past goalie Dan Loftus.

Duke equalized it with a garbage goal shortly thereafter, though. After goalie Bud Petit stopped a Blue Devil shot, the Cavaliers botched their clear attempt, as an errant pass ended up right in front of Duke’s Brad Ross with an empty net in front of him.

A few minutes later, Steve Schoeffel dodged and netted an unassisted goal on a bounce shot from six yards away. Despite the lead, Duke’s offense looks a bit out of sorts as multiple shots have missed wide.

–by Matthew Iles

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PREGAME: No.1 Duke vs. No.3 Virginia

10 minutes to go before the opening faceoff of the ACC tournament championship here in Klockner Stadium. The crowd is virtually all orange and blue, and the speakers are blasting every pump-up song you’ve ever heard. There are some ominous clouds on the horizon, and there were reports of isolated t-storms starting up around 6 p.m.

Nevertheless, the Blue Devils are going through their normal workouts, and they appear loose—joking and laughing with each other between reps. The Cavaliers are clearly revved up for this contest, as there are chest bumps and confident head nods galore

Stay tuned as we’ll keep the updates coming all game long as Duke vies for its second consecutive ACC tournament championship and fifth overall.

–by Matthew Iles

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