Maryland Holds Off North Carolina, 1-0, To Win ACC Men's Soccer Championship
Nov. 14, 2010
CARY, N.C. - Second-seeded Maryland outlasted top-seeded North Carolina, 1-0, to win the 2010 ACC Men's Soccer Championship Sunday afternoon at WakeMed Soccer Park. It was the fourth ACC title for the Terrapins, who held the Tar Heels scoreless for the first time since the season opener.
"We are delighted to be standing here as ACC champions," said Maryland coach Sasho Cirovski. "We knew it was going to be a tough game from the beginning. We have tremendous respect for Carolina - their players and coaches."
Maryland struck early on Matt Kassel's penalty kick at the 13:46 mark. The first-team All-ACC honoree sent the ball into the left back corner of the net to give the Terrapins the 1-0 lead.
The Tar Heels had to play the final 55 minutes down a man after first-team All-ACC midfielder Michael Farfan received a red card after a hard tackle in the 34th minute.
"Championship games take strange courses sometimes," Cirovski said. "Once we made the penalty kick, I thought Carolina came out with a little more energy. After the red card, Carolina became more aggressive. We naturally fell back a little bit and got in a little bit more of protective mode. I thought our defensive effort was of championship quality. That's what you have to have in these games."
Despite playing without their second-leading scorer and an All-Tournament team selection for much of the game, the fourth-ranked Tar Heels outshot No. 3 Maryland, 16-9. North Carolina registered six shots in the second half while the Terrapins were without a shot after intermission.
"First, I want to congratulate Maryland," UNC coach Elmar Bolowich. "They played a tremendous game. They came out ready and had the better side in the first half. We had a hard time finding a rhythm in the early going."
"In the second half with a man down, we tried and we had very good opportunities," Bolowich continued. "We played very strong despite playing without Michael Farfan. We created numerous opportunities. We had plenty of chances to tie it up and win, but we didn't make a play on the offensive end."
Maryland extended its winning streak to 13 games as it improved to 17-2-1. The Terrapins, who defeated Virginia for the 2008 ACC Championship, claimed their second conference title in the last three years. North Carolina's unbeaten streak was snapped at 12 matches. The Tar Heels (16-3-1) and Terrapins both expect to be high seeds in the NCAA Tournament, which will begin on Thursday. The bracket will be announced Monday at 4:30 p.m. on ESPNU.
2010 ACC Men's Soccer All-Tournament Team