CHAPEL HILL — No. 1 North Carolina scored two goals late in the first half and rode a strong defensive performance to a 4-2 victory over third-seeded Maryland to win the ACC field hockey championship.
“Winning an ACC championship in any sport is not easy to do,” said North Carolina coach Karen Shelton, whose team was the top seed in the tournament and the defending champion. “Maryland played a very good game against us and it took everything that we had to handle them. I’m really proud of our back four, and I felt they had some key intercepts there that were momentum-changers in the game.”
With the win, North Carolina (20-1, 5-0) clinched its 18th conference title, all under Shelton, and secured the league’s automatic berth to the NCAA tournament. The Tar Heels successfully defended the ACC title for the first time since 1997, also the last time they won the championship on their home field.
The NCAA bracket is to be announced on Tuesday evening. The tournament opens Saturday, with first-round games at campus sites.
Women’s basketball: Junior Haley Peters recorded 20 points and 21 rebounds as the third-ranked Blue Devils closed exhibition action with a 118-27 win over visiting Queens University of Charlotte.
Peters recorded her second double-double in as many games, scoring 16 of her 20 points in the second half. Junior Chelsea Gray scored a game-high 24 points and freshman Alexis Jones added 22 points and nine assists.
Volleyball: The Blue Devils came up just short, falling 3-2 (27-25, 23-25, 22-25, 25-23, 10-15) to host Maryland.
An evenly contested match throughout, Maryland narrowly edged Duke in hitting percentage, .260 to .225, knocking down 72 kills to 66 for the Blue Devils. Both squads registered 10 blocks, while the Terps held the slight advantage in digs, 79-70.
Wrestling: In Salem, Va., redshirt freshman Conner Hartmann kicked off the wrestling season with the 197-pound title at the Hokie Open. The tournament was Hartmann’s first in a Blue Devil singlet, while redshirt senior Diego Bencomo brought home runner-up recognition.
Hartmann finished the day a perfect 4-0 and gave up just five points total in the four matches to bring home the title.