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Aug. 27, 2016 — A pair of cannons over the ACC’s bow

The opening day of this weekend’s ACC/Big Ten challenge saw a pair of pretty enormous results on the part of the teams playing on the Big Ten side of the ledger.

Michigan managed to hold off top-ranked North Carolina, sneaking in a lightly-tipped ball over the goalkeeper on an untimed corner at the end of regulation to take a 1-0 win. Also, Iowa managed a 2-1 win over a Wake Forest team that had come into the game as the No. 7 team in the first NFHCA poll.

This is something unusual for the Atlantic Coast Conference, which has, for the last decade and a half, been the dominant field hockey conference in America. Last year, for example, the ACC sent six out of its seven field hockey teams to the NCAA Division I tournament.

Now, I know two games does not a season make. But there are also going to be a number of other games between the two conferences in the next couple of weeks. Reverse matches in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge are to be held today in Winston-Salem, N.C. Next weekend, four interconference matches including Duke, Boston College, Maryland, and Northwestern are going to be played.

And, just as interesting, will be tomorrow’s Top 10 matchup featuring Maryland and Syracuse, which will be played in Bala Cynwyd, Pa.

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