UNC women's lacrosse earns 3rd straight trip to semifinals

CorrespondentMay 21, 2011 

— With Loyola (Md.) repeatedly knocking it off balance, North Carolina struggled to find its footing in the first half of Saturday’s NCAA Tournament second-round game against the Greyhounds.

It wasn’t until junior Laura Zimmerman scored just as the half expired that the Tar Heels had a toe hold they could use to lift them over Loyola and into the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament.

While the final score was relatively close – 16-13 in favor of UNC – the Tar Heels had a measure of comfort in the second half, never leading by less than three goals. Zimmerman paced UNC’s attack with four goals, Corey Donohoe had three and four different players – Kara Cannizzaro, Emily Garrity, Becky Lynch and Brittney Coppa – scored twice at Fetzer Field.

It is UNC’s third straight trip to the national semifinals. The third-seeded Tar Heels (15-6) will face either Northwestern or Albany in their next game.

Sixth-seeded Loyola (17-3) and UNC traded goals for muck of the first half, with neither team leading by more than one for most of the frame.

After the Greyhounds’ took a 6-5 lead with 10:30 remaining, the Tar Heels scored three straight to take the first two-goal lead of the game. The two sides then exchanged goals to make the score 9-7 in favor of UNC late in the half.

With the seconds ticking away, UNC had the ball in the Loyola zone. After Loyola goalie Kerry Stoothoff made a nice save with 3 seconds left, officials called a foul against the Greyhounds, giving the Tar Heels a free position. Zimmerman managed to charge forward and score just before the clock hit 0:00 and UNC had a 10-7 edge at the break.

The Tar Heels scored the first two goals after halftime, giving them the comfortable working margin they never had in the back-and-forth first. Loyola’s Marlee Paton scored with 3:34 left to bring the Greyhounds within three, but UNC managed to run out the final minutes of the game without incident.

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