CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The Virginia women’s soccer team suffered its fifth one-goal loss of the season, falling at No. 2 North Carolina 2-1 Saturday afternoon at Fetzer Field. An 89th minute penalty kick gave the Tar Heels the game-winning goal and sent Virginia to 6-5-3 overall (1-4-1 ACC).
“Obviously this is a tough way to lose a game,” said head coach Steve Swanson. “I thought we did what we needed to do to get a result. We gave up the fewest scoring chances against North Carolina that I can remember in all the times we have played them. Their goalie made a couple of big saves when the game was 1-1 in the second half to keep us from taking the lead.”
After a scoreless first half, the Tar Heels took a 1-0 lead in the 51st minute. Off of a corner kick, a loose ball deflected off the arm of Alyssa Rich inside the 6-yard box and into the net, but the goal stood to put Carolina in front. The Cavaliers drew even in the 62nd minute. Sinead Farrelly (Havertown, Pa.) intercepted a clearance at the top of the box and fired a low shot just inside the near post for her fifth goal of the year. The Tar Heels retook the lead in the 89th minute when a handball in the box gave UNC a penalty kick that Ali Hawkins converted for the game-winner.
Overall, North Carolina outshot Virginia 12-6 and had a 7-3 corner kick advantage. Chantel Jones (Midlothian, Va.) made seven saves for the Cavaliers, while Ashlyn Harris made one for the Tar Heels.
“I am proud of the team and how we continue to hang in there and fight,” said Swanson. “Every game we have to deal with something else, a new way to end up on the wrong side of the scoreline. We just need to start making the plays to change that. Of course we are feeling some urgency, but I am confident that we can get it turned around. These next four games are almost like the postseason for us, but I am happy with how we have been playing and it is just a matter of time before a ball or two bounces our way.”
The Cavaliers continue a four-match road trip on Oct. 22 as they visit Duke
NORTH CAROLINA 2, VIRGINIA 1
Virginia (6-5-3, 1-4-1) 0 1 – 1
#2 North Carolina (12-1-1, 5-1-0) 0 2 – 2
UNC. Alyssa Rich 5 (Ali Hawkins, Whutney Engen) 51’
UVa. Sinead Farrelly 5 (unassisted) 62’
UNC. Ali Hawkins 6 (penalty kick) 89’
Shots: UVa 6, UNC 12
Corners: UVa 3, UNC 7
Saves: UVa 7 (Jones 7), UNC 1 (Harris 1)
Fouls: UVa 8, UNC 4