Coach John Danowski said top-seeded Duke is preparing to meet fifth-seeded Denver in an NCAA tournament quarterfinal Saturday at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore without starting attackman Josh Dionne, who injured his right knee in Sunday’s 19-11 victory over Johns Hopkins.
“He had an MRI last night at 9 o’clock,” Danowski said Tuesday morning during a conference call. “We don’t know the results of that MRI yet, but we’re planning to move ahead with Josh.”
Dionne, who recorded 49 goals and seven assists this spring, would be replaced in the starting lineup by junior Kyle Keenan, a member of the second midfield who has posted 19 goals and nine assists.
“Kyle Keenan will be the next guy to step up,” Danowski said. “Kyle has been playing midfield for us, but he’s been an attackman for really his whole career. Very competent, played on the Under-19 team that won the gold medal in Finland a couple summers ago. Extremely confident and competent player. Has played well in the midfield for us, and we are excited. We just got younger.”
Danowski said Keenan should fit in well with a group a starting attack that features senior Jordan Wolf (59, 33) and sophomore Case Matheis (23, 18).
“I think there will be minimal impact,” Danowski said. “The impact is more emotional in that your heart breaks for Josh. He’s a senior and was playing the best game of his career. He was 4-for-4 shooting in one half, and he was playing lights out. Your heart just breaks for him to get hurt at this time of year.”