CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers (12-3) used a 6-1 run in the fourth quarter to outlast the North Carolina Tar Heels (8-7) on Saturday afternoon, 14-13, at UNC Lacrosse Stadium. UVA advances to the ACC Championship final for the second year in a row.
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – The No. 6 Virginia Cavaliers (12-3) used a 6-1 run in the fourth quarter to outlast the North Carolina Tar Heels (8-7) on Saturday afternoon, 14-13, at UNC Lacrosse Stadium. UVA advances to the ACC Championship final for the second year in a row.
In the first year of a two-year agreement, the ACC Championship final round will go to the home of the highest remaining seed. UVA is the No. 1 seed and will host No. 3 seeded Notre Dame on Sat., May 4 at 2 p.m. at Klöckner Stadium. Notre Dame topped No. 2 seeded Duke, 12-10, on Saturday in the second semifinal game.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Virginia jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead, courtesy of goals from Matt Moore, Ryan Conrad and Petey LaSalla. UNC made the game close, 4-3, after scoring three goals in a 3-1 run. Ian Laviano and Ryan Conrad scored to conclude the first quarter with a 6-3 lead after 15 minutes. Moore tied his career-high with four assists in the first frame.
After scoring with 14 seconds left in the first quarter, UVA didn’t score again for the next 26:17 in which UNC reeled off a 7-0 run to take a commanding 10-6 lead with 8:16 left in the third quarter. Michael Kraus broke through with an unassisted goal at 3:06 to cut UVA’s deficit to three goals, 10-7. North Carolina responded with a 2-0 run, taking a 12-8 lead with 14:09 left to play.
Dox Aitken started the comeback with 7:31 left in the game, scoring back-to-back goals to cut the UVA deficit to two goals, 12-10. Aitken’s first goal was the 100th of his career and the second goal broke Shamel Bratton’s school record for career points by a midfielder.
After Aitken’s goals, Laviano scored on a Moore helper at 6:32 in the fourth, followed by an acrobatic goal on another Moore assist by Mikey Herring with 5:37 left to play to tie the game at 12-12.
Alex Trippi bounced in a shot at 3:24 to give UNC the lead, 13-12 for the final time. Kraus tied the game, 13-12, with an unassisted goal at 3:05. After a huge save by Patrick Burkinshaw and an ensuing ground ball by Matt Dziama, UVA moved the ball in transition and Cade Saustad recorded his first career assist when he found Laviano for the game-winning goal at 1:30 in the fourth.
— Virginia Men’s Lacrosse (@UVAMensLax) April 27, 2019
UVA STAT LEADERS
• A Matt Moore
1 goal, 6 assists
• A Ian Laviano
• M Ryan Conrad
A Michael Kraus
2 goals, 1 assist
• Dox Aitken became the 17th Cavalier to record 100 career goals.
• Aitken (130) broke Shamel Bratton’s (129) UVA record for career points by a midfielder.
• UVA is 22-20 all-time in the ACC Tournament.
• UVA is 11-5 all-time as the No. 1 seed in the ACC Tournament.
• UVA is 6-7 all-time against UNC in the ACC Tournament.
• UVA is 2-1 all-time in the ACC Tournament under Lars Tiffany.
FROM THE LOCKER ROOM
“When it was 12-8 [North Carolina] and Caton Johnson was playing so fantastic along with the UNC defense getting to our sticks and blocking our shots I was very impressed a North Carolina team playing on one-day rest. We kept waiting for them to fade so we could get that extra ground ball, but it wasn’t until the last five minutes that we felt that. When you come back a few times during the season like we have, our men truly believe that we are never out of it. The cultural shift of committing to this program, the sacrifice these men have made has been significant behind the scenes and it makes the difference. ” – Lars Tiffany
The ACC Championship game will be back at Klöckner Stadium on May 4. Faceoff is set for 2 p.m. and the game will be televised live on ESPNU. UVA will play No. 3 seed Notre Dame.
ACC Championship Game Tickets
Tickets for Saturday’s ACC Championship game will go on sale Monday, starting at 9 a.m. Fans can purchase tickets at a discounted rate in advance by going online to VirginiaSports.com/Tickets. Advanced sales and online purchases are $8 for reserved seats (if available) and $5 for general admission. At the GameDay window, reserved tickets are $10 and general admission will be $8. Students of a participating school will be admitted free of charge with the presentation of a valid student ID. Reserved season ticket holders will have the opportunity to purchase their same seats they held for the 2019 Lacrosse season, until Tues., April 30 at 5 p.m., please call the ticket office at (800) 542-8821.