March 9, 2013
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -
The No. 8 Virginia women's lacrosse team fell 8-7 at No. 3 North Carolina, the fourth-straight loss to a top-10-ranked team for the Cavaliers.
"We had another heart-breaking one-goal loss," said head coach Julie Myers. "We are right there in games. We are getting better in some areas and are creating lots of opportunities to be able to win a game. At some point, we need to start to capitalize on those opportunities."
The Tar Heels took the lead four times in the first half, including 1:04 into the game when Kara Cannizzaro scored the first goal of the game, but the Cavaliers answered each time.
Casey Bocklet tied the game 1-1 on an unassisted goal. Dana Boyle knotted it at two after creating her own scoring opportunity with 17:34 left in the half. Courtney Swan took three shots at goal, finding paydirt on her third try to make it a 3-3 game with 9:57 left in the half.
North Carolina scored back-to-back goals, taking the first two-goal advantage of the game, 5-3. Again, the Cavaliers came back with Boyle taking a feed from Ashlee Warner with 3:38 left in the half. Bocklet followed with a quick goal after the draw control, knotting the game at 5-5 with 3:19 left in the half.
The Tar Heels had a chance to take the lead with a free position shot with five seconds left in the period, but Virginia senior goalkeeper Kim Kolarik came up with a big save to keep the score tied going into the break.
In the second half, it was Carolina's turn to play catch-up after Morgan Stephens took a pass from Bocklet and whipped it into the goal to give Virginia its first lead of the game, 6-5, with 26:23 remaining. After UNC tied the game three minutes later, Bocklet put the Cavaliers back up on a free position shot with 22:12 left in the game.
Virginia clung to the one-goal lead until the 9:22 mark when Carolina's Taylor George knotted the contest at 7. Kara Cannizzaro made her fourth goal of the contest with 6:49 remaining to put UNC back in the lead, 8-7.
The Tar Heels won the ensuing draw control, but turned the ball over by going into the crease. Virginia got three shots off with an attempt by Warner going high, a shot by Courtney Swan hitting the post and another Warner attempt saved by the UNC goalie.
UNC was running the ball up field on a clear attempt when Caroline McTiernan got called for a foul and earned a yellow card with 1:10 left in the game. After a UNC turnover, Sally Jentis came up with a ground ball with 40 seconds left in the game, but UNC's Sloane Serpe caused her to turn it back over, putting the Heels back on attack with 34 seconds left in the game.
Megan Dunleavy was whistled for a foul and issued a yellow card with three seconds left in the game as the Tar Heels ran out the clock and secured the 8-7 victory.
With the loss, the Cavaliers fall to 2-4 and 0-2 in the ACC. North Carolina improves to 5-1 (1-0 ACC).
The Cavaliers, in their last four games, have fallen to No. 1 Maryland, No. 2 Syracuse, and No. 3 North Carolina as well as a loss last Sunday to No. 10 Penn State. It was also the third one-goal loss for UVa in that same span.
"We had some long stances of great attacking looks, but we just failed to shoot to score," Myers said. "We had some great defensive moments when we got the ball on the ground and even in our stick only to turn it over and see them go to goal on us. We are right there. We need to work on the basics and fundamentals and make sure our composure gets better and that our confidence grows despite losses. I do think we are in a spot to beat some of these top-ranked teams."
Bocklet led the Cavaliers with three goals and an assist. Boyle had a pair of goals.
Stephens scored a goal and had five draw controls and a ground ball. Swan had four draw controls.
Kolarik had four saves, all in the first period.
The Cavalier defense was bolstered by the season debuts of Kelsey Gahan and Lelan Bailey. Both returned to action after missing the beginning of the season recovering from injuries.
"Kelsey Gahan had a great game," Myers said. "She mainly had Abbey Friend who only had one assist, which is pretty low for her. Leland was back in the mix as well, so I do think our defense was a little bit stingier and did a nice job in transition. We were more organized. It was more communicative, but clearly we need to be able to score at the other end as well."
The Cavaliers have a pair of upcoming home games, hosting William & Mary on Wednesday, March 13 at 7 p.m. and Princeton on Saturday, March 16 at 12 p.m. at Klöckner Stadium. The Princeton game is part of a doubleheader with the UVa men's lacrosse team. The Cavalier men will be taking on Ohio State at 3 p.m. following the conclusion of the women's game.