King Hat trick

Senior midfielder Tziarra King keeps a close eye on the ball as it moves up field. King acquired the second hat-trick of her career and lead NC State in their 3-1 victory over Furman University on Sunday, September 15, 2019.

After winning an offensive shootout 5-2 at ECU, NC State women’s soccer will take a short trip to Durham to take on No. 8 Duke this Sunday for its first ACC match of the season. 

The Wolfpack (5-3) are coming off of dominant victories against ECU and Furman, while Duke (5-1-1) is coming off of blow-out wins against LSU and JMU, beating both of them 6-0. 

The Blue Devils’ offense has been on fire, scoring 15 goals in the past three games. Their offense is led by midfielders senior Ella Stevens and sophomore Mackenzie Pluck. Stevens leads the team in points with five goals and three assists with an impressive .278 shooting percentage. Pluck is second behind Stevens in points with four goals and four assists.

Duke’s defense has been strong as well led by redshirt junior goalkeeper Brooke Heinsohn. Heinsohn has 17 saves on the season with a .810 save percentage and five clean sheets. Duke has not been scored on in the past three games and its opponents have averaged only 0.57 goals.  

Senior midfielder Tziarra King has been fantastic this season for the Wolfpack and leads its offense with 18 points. She has scored five goals and grabbed three assists in the past two games. Her offensive production and leadership are crucial for the Wolfpack’s success. 

Although NC State’s defense has struggled to shutout teams this season, it gets the job done. Junior Goalkeeper Jessica Berlin has 20 saves on this season with a .741 save percentage. However, after allowing four goals in the past three games, the Wolfpack’s defense may need to tighten up against Duke’s stellar offense. 

With both teams catching fire on offense their past two games, fans should expect to see an offensive showdown between the crosstown rivals. 

The kickoff will begin at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Koskinen Stadium in Durham. It will be televised on the ACC Network.