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Led by Ask Ekeland’s hat trick, Duquesne trounce Virginia Tech, 5-1

Photo courtesy Trevor Cockburn / Duquesne University Athletics

From Duquesne University Athletic Department report

Duquesne went down early in this one, but with the help of Ask Ekeland and his first career hat trick, the Dukes were able to recover for a lopsided 5-1 victory on Sunday over the Virginia Tech Hokies at Sentara Park in the final game of the Fairfield Inn by Marriott Invitational.

Things got testy early on, as in the 6th minute, Jayden Da was given a yellow card for unsportsmanlike conduct. This didn’t end up costing the Dukes, but a later foul by Da in the 20th minute was followed by a 21st minute goal by Virginia Tech. Ethan Ballek struck the ball into the bottom left corner of the goal, and just like that, it was 1-0 Virginia Tech. The two Hokies credited with the assists were Conor Pugh and Marco Vesterholm.

Duquesne only trailed for 14 minutes and 45 seconds in this game, and that was thanks to a 35th minute goal by Christoffer Vie Angell slotted one past Tech goalkeeper Connor Jordan-Hyde for the equalizing goal.

The first half ended with both teams even at one. Virginia Tech had the upper hand in shots with seven shots to Duquesne’s four. Dukes goalkeeper Zolton Nagy’s four saves loomed large in this one remaining tied at one.

The Dukes came out in the second half with their hair on fire, and in the 53rd minute, they took the lead for good. Jayden Da took the dish from Anthony DiFalco and blasted it through the hands of Jordan-Hyde for his first goal of the year.

Two minutes later, Ask Ekeland started his three-goal spree with a solo effort that ended with a top right corner finish past Jordan-Hyde to put his team up 3-1. Then, he struck again in the 62nd minute with another one that tickled the twine in the right corner of the net. Jaxon Ervin earned the assist on the goal for his first collegiate point.

Virginia Tech had two straight corner kicks in the 74th minute, but they could not convert. This proved consequential, because two minutes later, Ask Ekeland earned his first collegiate hat trick when he rolled one past Jordan-Hyde into the far-right corner of the net to make it 5-1. Tate Mohney was credited with the assist on the goal.

The Dukes outshot the Hokies 12-8 in the final half of play, and they scored on a third of those shots taken.

Duquesne will host Bowling Green on Thursday at 7 pm for its home opener at Rooney Field.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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