CHAPEL HILL — The Duke volleyball team stunned North Carolina on Friday night, handing the Tar Heels their first loss of the season with a 3-0 sweep (25-22, 25-22, 25-19) in front of a record crowd of 5,322 at Carmichael Arena.
The Tar Heels (15-1, 4-1 ACC) committed 28 errors, twice as many as Duke.
“I thought Duke played a really good match tonight, and I was really disappointed with the way we played and the number of unforced errors we committed,” Tar Heels coacj Joe Sagula said. “I think this will be a wakeup call for this team. It can be hard to get the message across that we need to improve while the team is winning, so I think we’ve gotten their attention now. I give Duke all the credit tonight, but every set was close, and I didn’t feel like we were ever out of the game.
“It was an unbelievably great environment to play in, but I hope we can do this again and play better.”
Duke/UNC/N.C. State: The Blue Devils women shot 2-under 286 in the opening round of the Tar Heel Invitational and is one shot off the lead at Finley Golf Course in Chapel Hill.
Vanderbilt shot 285 to take the team lead. North Carolina State is sixth at 293, and Atlantic Coast Conference brethren North Carolina, Wake Forest and Clemson are tied for ninth at 297.
Duke was led by senior Laetitia Beck, who shot 3-under 69 and is tied for third overall with 36 holes remaining. Beck collected birdies on Nos. 11, 13 and 18 on the back nine and had four overall. She hit 15 greens, six fairways and had 30 putts.
Augusta James paced the Wolfpack with a 72, and Rachael Taylor and Vivian Tsui shot 73s.
James made two birdies early and was 1 under on the front nine. She is 16th of 96 players.
Senior Katherine Perry led the Tar Heels, shooting 72, and is tied for 16th.
“Overall I thought for the most part the girls played well,” Tar Heels coach Jan Mann said. “If you look at how we finished, we didn’t finish well. We just need to finish stronger.
“I feel like our team can make tons of birdies. So I’m confident over the next two days that we’ll perform well. It’s always tough to not start real strong, but we’re fighters so they’ll come through.”