Virginia Outlasts North Carolina in Overtime, 12-10
April 28, 2006
BALTIMORE - Virginia staged a late rally in regulation and then again in overtime to outlast North Carolina in the Atlantic Coast Conference Women's Lacrosse Championship semifinals at M&T Bank Stadium on Friday, 12-10.
Down 9-7 late in regulation, the Cavaliers scored three goals in a span of 44 seconds to reclaim the lead it held for most of the game. Tyler Leachman got the rally going with her free position tally with 3:12 left in regulation, and after Virginia controlled the ensuing draw, Nikki Lieb tied the score just 11 seconds later. Virginia wasn't done, however, as Leachman put the Cavaliers back on top with her goal with just 2:28 remaining.
North Carolina, the tournament's third seed, found some heroics of its own in the late stages of the game, as Katie Brooks converted an Amber Falcone pass with just five seconds left in regulation to tie the score at 10 and force overtime.
With just 1:25 left in overtime, Kate Breslin converted a free position shot to give the Cavaliers a one-goal lead. Virginia played keep-away for the remainder of the game, and Leachman put the game on ice with her seventh goal of the day with just one second left, tying the ACC Championship record for single-game goals.
The contest was a close one throughout, with neither team leading by more than two goals the entire way. Virginia started the scoring with 26:10 remaining in the first half, with Leachman scoring the first of her goals on a free position shot. North Carolina wasted little time countering, as Meg Freshwater notched an unassisted tally just 49 seconds later to tie the score.
The teams again traded goals to make it 2-2 before Breslin and Leachman scored back-to-back goals to push Virginia's advantage to two. The teams alternated goals into the second half, leaving Virginia up 7-5 with 20:38 to play.
North Carolina then mounted a 4-0 run, getting goals from Jess Allen, Chrissy Rude, Freshwater and Melissa McCarthy to take a 9-7 lead. Allen and Rude scored just four and a half minutes apart midway through the half to tie the score, and Freshwater converted a free position shot with 11:50 remaining to give the Tar Heels their first lead of the day. McCarthy added her score with just 3:37 left in the contest, but Leachman countered with the first of the three goals in Virginia's late spurt just 25 seconds later.
The Cavaliers (14-3), seeded second in the tournament, advance to Sunday's championship match, where they will face either top-seeded Duke or fourth-seeded Maryland in a regionally televised contest at 1 p.m.