Will Pulisic was the man of the hour Friday night, as the freshman goalie had seven saves, including two in the final minute, to cap an outstanding defensive effort from the Blue Devils. 

The 12th-ranked Fighting Irish provided a relentless attack, but Pulisic and senior center back Markus Fjørtoft ensured that No. 15 Duke left South Bend, Ind., with a well-earned point. The two teams played to a scoreless draw after 110 minutes Friday night at Alumni Stadium.

The most important play came with 51 seconds left in double overtime when Notre Dame forward Jon Gallagher drew a questionable penalty kick for a chance to win the game. Pulisic came up huge and blocked not only the initial shot, but also the rebound to preserve the tie. The clean sheet was the sixth for Pulisic on the season, the most since Alex Long’s seven in 2013 for Duke. 

“Incredible we were sleeping on the rebound,” Blue Devil head coach John Kerr said. ”We were so shocked that the ref called a penalty and Will bailed us out. Incredible moment for our season. That's a big result for us away from home under the circumstances.”

It was a quiet first half, with only four shots combined between the two teams. But the Notre Dame offense turned it around after halftime, outshooting Duke 16-4 and finishing with nine more corner attempts. It was a tough night for the Blue Devil attack, which only managed one shot on goal after the first half, but Fjørtoft and the defense bailed them out all night.

“He was a man amongst boys once again,” Kerr said of Fjørtoft. “Winning so many crucial head balls against team that's really good at crosses.”

Fjørtoft and fellow defenders Jack Doran and Carter Manley were terrific on the back line. They regularly thwarted Notre Dame offensives, clearing balls and making Pulisic’s job a little easier. 

“He can play any position,” Kerr said of Doran. “And the way he stuck to the task was very impressive. He rarely, if ever, played a defensive position growing up in his development. So it just shows how tough he is mentally, and I’m really proud of this performance."

Although it was anemic in the second half, the Blue Devil offense generated two good looks in the first 36 minutes. With 14 minutes remaining in the first half, freshman Daniel Wright uncorked a shot from 15 yards out that was saved by Fighting Irish goalie Chris Hubbard. Five minutes later, it was the senior Brian White who got behind the defense, but Hubbard made another save to keep Duke (10-3-1, 3-3-1 in the ACC) scoreless. 

After a quiet first half, Notre Dame (9-4-2, 3-2-2) turned up the heat in the second. Gallagher had three shots in a 10-minute span, each deflected by Pulisic. Senior Kyle Dedrick had the best chance of the period, streaking up the left wing and firing a bullet that was barely wide right. In the 80th minute, Dedrick again had a chance to win the game, but Pulisic made the save to force overtime. 

Notre Dame threatened multiple times in overtime, but Pulisic and the defense remained stout. In the 92nd minute, the Fighting Irish crossed the ball in front of the Duke goal, but Patrick Berneski’s header sailed over the crossbar. A minute later, Fjørtoft managed to clear the ball away after Gallagher controlled a rebound. 

The Blue Devils will wrap up the regular season at home this week against Delaware Tuesday and No. 10 Virginia Friday.