Tar Heels Head to Championship Game For 20th Consecutive Year
Nov. 9, 2007
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLA. - For only the third time in the history of the Atlantic Coast Conference Women's Soccer Championship, a semifinal game came down to a shootout as top-seeded North Carolina advanced to Sunday's championship game on penalty kicks, 4-2. The fourth-seeded Virginia Cavaliers, who played in a shootout for the second time this week, took the Tar Heels to a 1-1 draw after 110 minutes of play in the first semifinal game of the 2007 league tournament at Disney's Wide World of Sports® Complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
The battle between the Tar Heels and Cavaliers also marked the fourth time in the league's tournament history that a semifinal contest went into overtime.
"We're pleased to be advancing to the championship game on Sunday," North Carolina head coach Anson Dorrance said. "I tip my hat to Virginia. They were in the game the entire time. It was a superb night of women's soccer."
Virginia struck first in the 23rd minute on a goal by freshman Meghan Lenczyk. All-conference senior Shannon Foley shot the ball on a corner kick and ACC Defensive Player of the Year Becky Sauerbrunn headed the ball to Lenczyk, who blasted it into the right corner of the net for her sixth goal of the season.
The Cavaliers later came close to adding another goal when a shot by freshman Amy Hemenway rolled just inches past the left post. UVa would head into the break holding a 1-0 advantage.
UNC tied things up in the second half, as sophomore Nikki Washington put the Tar Heels on the board. The first team All-ACC honoree scored on a penalty kick for her sixth goal of the season.
While the game ended in a 1-1 tie, both overtime periods were nothing short of exciting. Both teams had scoring opportunities, especially in the second overtime as UNC's Casey Nogueira fired a shot that sailed wide of the net just four minutes into the period and later Virginia missed a shot with six minutes left on the clock.
Cavalier goalkeeper Chantel Jones came up with a big defensive effort, as she stopped a shot by UNC's Washington before the clock winded down for a shootout.
In the shootout, UNC took a 2-1 advantage after a shot by Virginia's Alli Fries hit the right post. Players from both teams scored in the third round, but the Tar Heels extended their lead to 4-2 after Meghan Klingenberg's shot found the back of the net. Goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris clinched the win for the Tar Heels, as she made the game-winning save against Virginia's Jen Redmond.