No. 8 Virginia Falls To No. 2 North Carolina, 14-9
CHARLOTTESVILLE – The eighth-ranked Virginia women’s lacrosse team dropped a 14-9 contest to second-ranked North Carolina on Saturday (March 10) at Klöckner Stadium. Seniors Charlie Finnigan (Twickenham, Middlesex, England) and Ainsley Baker (Corning, N.Y.) each had two goals while classmate Josie Owen (Gibson Island, Md.) added a goal and two assists to lead Virginia.
The loss dropped UVa’s overall record to 3-3 and 0-2 in Atlantic Coast Conference play. The Tar Heels remained undefeated and improved to 8-0 on the season (1-0 ACC).
Virginia scored three-consecutive goals to open the game, as Liza Blue (Butler, Md.) converted a free position shot, Katie Slater (Kensington, Md.) scored an unassisted goal and Owen found Baker in front of the goal within the first nine minutes of the contest.
North Carolina got on the board at the 17:36 mark on an Abbey Friend goal, but Baker answered on the other end of the field to keep Virginia’s three-goal lead, 4-1. From that point, the Tar Heels out-scored the Cavaliers 4-1 for the remainder of the half and the score was tied 5-5 at the break.
“North Carolina chipped away,” Virginia head coach Julie Myers said. “They did a nice job of staying in the moment and not panicking about the score of the game. I give them a lot of credit for staying in their scheme and chipping away until they broke through.”
In the second half, North Carolina went on a 5-1 run, including four unanswered goals, that ended up being the difference in the game. After the teams traded goals to open the half, North Carolina got goals from four different Tar Heels to take a commanding 10-6 lead at the 17:55 mark.
Virginia’s Sloan Warren (Philadelphia, Pa.) scored a goal down the stretch and Finnigan added two but the Tar Heels held on for the 14-9 victory.
“Clearly we need to focus on ourselves a little bit and make sure we’re rising to the challenge,” Myers said. “I think we’re inches away from putting it all together for an entire game.”
Virginia held a 21-19 advantage in shots and a 9-6 advantage in ground balls. Virginia also held a slight advantage in draw controls, 13-12. The teams each had six turnovers.
Kim Kolarik (Riva, Md.) played all 60 minutes in goal for Virginia and finished with two saves and a ground ball.
Defender Lelan Bailey (Millersville, Md.) led UVa with two caused turnovers and two ground balls.
For UNC, Becky Lynch and Abbey Friend scored four goals apiece. Lynch added two assists for a game-high six points.
Tar Heel goalkeeper Lauren Maksym played all 60 minutes and had three saves.
It was the fifth-straight win for North Carolina in the series with Virginia.
The Cavaliers are back in action on Wednesday (March 14) at William & Mary. The contest is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.