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Archive for April 14, 2018

April 14, 2018 — North Carolina 20, Syracuse 11

POSTGAME That’s all for today, have a good day and thanks for reading

POSTGAME But you also have to understand that the reason Syracuse looked like they did today was that North Carolina played a near-perfect game of lacrosse. They are certainly a candidate for Final Four participation, especially if they can share the ball

POSTGAME I really feel for the Syracuse players because many of them were on highly successful teams in school and for club programs, but the current group of individuals seemingly has not jelled together as a team. This team, I think, does have players with the potential to be a transformative player in the mold of a Kailah Kemptney or Kayla Treanor, but neither of them are going to be running out of that locker room and onto the pitch

POSTGAME But today, I saw a team that ran out of answers in almost every phase of the game. The Orange were badly beaten in the draw circle after investing time in a draw specialist who is out injured. The defense could not deal with UNC’s go-to play, a high pick to shake a player at the crease for a pass. The team’s starting goalkeeper was pulled from the game not once, but twice. The attack did not find second-leading scorer Nicole Levy for a goal even once

POSTGAME I saw something that I have never seen today from this Syracuse team under head coach Gary Gait. Mind you, this team has been somewhat star-crossed the last few years, coming within a table-official’s intervention of perhaps winning an NCAA title a few years back and having bad luck or indiscipline on several other occasions

FULL TIME The final buzzer sounds with North Carolina beating Syracuse 20-11

58:00 And with that, UNC wins the draw; they lead that category 23-10 today

57:51 UNC GOAL Olivia Ferrucci with an easy finish from the crease, and the Heels lead 20-11

56:19 SYR GOAL Riley Donahue with a double-dodge, then a sidewinder into the goal cage; Syracuse trails by eight, and it is a three-possession game right now

54:59 UNC wins the draw, but throws the ball out of bounds in the attack set; it seems as though the only team that can stop the Heels are the Heels themselves

54:05 UNC GOAL Marie McCool with a cut off the high pick again, finishes off the Ortega pass. UNC leads 19-10

53:25 Goldstock is pulled again; Bri Stahrr is now in the goal cage for Syracuse

53:25 UNC GOAL Maggie Bill pings another post and it goes in! UNC leads 18-10

52:00 Carolina wins the draw and is content to run a stall-to-score


52:19 SYR GOAL Hawryschuk with yet another goal for Syracuse; she’s kept her side in it thus far, but time is getting short; UNC leads 17-10

51:30 UNC is content to run clock with an eight-goal lead; it’s a six-possession game right now and the Heels are not about to lengthen the game

48:52 Jamie Ortega goes baseline, crosses the fan, and hits the crossbar! A spectacular effort that goes for naught; unlucky!

48:12 UNC GOAL Ortega takes advantage of a sliver of space on the crease and finishes over Goldstock; UNC takes complete control of the game with a 17-9 lead

46:52 SYR YELLOW Lila Nazarian is off for two for the crosse-check; not what you want when you’re chasing the game

45:27 UNC GOAL Marie McCool with her fourth goal and, incidentally, her second goalpost; UNC leads 16-9

41:20 Goldstock back in the crease for Syracuse

41:20 Oddly enough, Duke finds itself in worse shape. Like last year, the Blue Devils may not make the NCAA Tournament because, though they are 7-6 as of today, they have to play Notre Dame and UNC their last two games of the season and, if they lose a first-round game in the ACCs, will have a 7-9 record heading into a final match against East Carolina

41:20 So, if Syracuse loses this game and next week’s match against national No. 2 Boston College, they go to 8-8 overall. This means that the final conference match against Louisville could very well be the Orange’s season. That’s because if the Orange go into the ACC Tournament with an 8-9 record, they will have to win two games in the ACC Tournament to be eligible for the postseason. Syracuse does not have a game scheduled between the ACC Tournament final and the potential first week of the NCAA Division I Tournament


41:20 SYR FP and GOAL Molly Carter, from top dead center, is able to beat Hennessey; Carolina still leads by six

39:45 UNC GOAL Hazar with a big overhand shot to beat Van Middlem; UNC leads 15-8

39:07 UNC GOAL Klages, using the high pick again, catches the elementary pass from behind the goal cage and scores; Heels lead by six

38:49 SYR FP and GOAL Merola connects from the center-left hash; Syracuse trails by five

38:40 SYR FP Merola’s open shot from the center hash is deflected but she is fouled hard

37:33 Hannah Van Middlem now goes into the goal cage for Syracuse

37:33 UNC GOAL Maggie Bill beats the shot clock, Goldstock, and the right post to build a 13-7 lead

36:48 UNC FP Ally Mastroianni misses the cage from the left hash

35:00 Goldstock with the interception; that’s what an athletic goalie can do for you

34:18 UNC Klages gets her fourth of the day! UNC takes a 12-7 lead

33:56 SYR FP and GOAL Marola passes to Donahue, who pings it in off Hennessey’s stick; Syracuse trails by four

33:19 TIMEOUT SYRACUSE Need to stop the bleeding here: that is three goals in 27 seconds for the Heels

33:19 UNC GOAL McCool is fouled on the right wing, uses the self-start, and runs baseline to put it in the top corner! Golazo! Tar Heels lead by five

33:00 UNC GOAL On the same cut as Klages did seconds ago, Jamie Ortega finishes to give Carolina a 10-6 lead

32:48 UNC GOAL Klages loses herself in the center of the Syracuse defense; there was nobody within four yards of her when she executed the catch-and-shoot; UNC leads 9-6

31:46 SYR GOAL Hawryschuk scores while being tripped; what a shot! UNC still leads 8-6

30:48 Bill with a big curl, Goldstock drops to her knees and makes the stop

30:00 The second half is under way

HALFTIME Meanwhile, UNC’s defense has been playing its heart out against the Syracuse attack. Low defenders Naomi Lerner, Emma Trenchard, Erin Kelly, and Kayla Wood have been splendid

HALFTIME The problems with Syracuse’s team defense continue; Carolina got eight goals in the first half against a defense which averages more than 14 goals against per game. Goldstock has made nine stops thus far, so she is holding her own

HALFTIME The buzzer sounds with Carolina leading 8-5

29:58 Taylor Gait goes for a late goal for Syracuse, but it finds Hennessey’s stick

29:48 Equally tactical move from UNC; Maggie Bill goes for a double-team from an offside position; penalty is just possession, and the play burned eight seconds, but the official did rule that the play occurred in the critical attack area and stopped the clock

29:40 TIMEOUT SYRACUSE Very tactical timeout by Gary Gait; in the final two minutes, the clock no longer stops on every whistle, so the clock was running when Syracuse was entering the attack zone when UNC committed a foul. What will the Orange do here?

26:16 UNC GOAL Katie Hoeg with an absolute rocket past Goldstock; UNC leads 8-5

23:22 SYR FP and GOAL Neena Marola, the senior, scores off a wing hash and the game closes to 7-5 in favor of UNC

22:30 UNC gets a gift from the officiating crew as goalie Elise Hennessey steps over the 35-yard restraining line before she offloaded the ball to McCool behind the 35, who was late in stepping over the line into the neutral zone. I know there is a certain laxity that may have come from the early days of the restraining line in the 1990s, but I thought the restraining line was a hard boundary as well

20:01 Thus far this season, a particular problem for Syracuse is the lack of consistency on the draw. Ever since losing DIRO (draw in, run off) specialist Morgan Widner to an injury, the Orange have won only 42 percent of their draws. But UNC has been the one to blink thus far, changing up McCool in the circle for junior Charlotte Sofield


20:01 UNC GOAL Klages catches a Hazar pass which skims just over the crossbar, and the sophomore scores it! Carolina leads 7-4

17:47 UNC GOAL Ela Hazar puts in a quick-stick from in front, just beating Goldstock by her shin. Carolina leads by two

15:33 SYR GOAL Mary Rahal spins on the top of the crease, finishes over the goalie! Carolina leads 5-4

14:11 SYR GOAL Sam Swart makes a looping run and finishes with the left hand; Carolina still leads 5-3

13:36 UNC GOAL Kara Klages catches the ball at the top of the arc and slaloms around two SU defenders to score; Carolina up 5-2

12:39 UNC GOAL Marie McCool rises and fires into the corner where Mama keeps the Thin Mints; how did she do that? Carolina leads 4-2

10:24 The game has looked like a UWLX game thus far, because both defenses have opted to try to shut off one player. Syracuse is faceguarding Marie McCool, and UNC is faceguarding Nicole Levy


10:24 SYR GOAL Hawryschuk fights through a check, but puts it over the goalie’s shoulder! Syracuse is down by one

8:26 SYR FP Donahue, from the right hash, passes to Vanessa Costentino who hits the post! Good look, but the ball was just two inches away from going in; unlucky!

7:30 UNC FP Bill from top dead center, but Goldstock comes up with the stop

3:50 UNC GOAL Hazar goes to goal and scores over Goldstock’s right shoulder! Carolina leads 3-1

3:38 UNC GOAL Maggie Bill, the part-time soccer player for the Heels, catches and shoots! She’s got a brace, and Carolina leads 2-1

2:27 SYR GOAL Hawryschuk spins off the hip of her defender, goes to goal, and scores! Game tied 1-1

0:34 UNC GOAL Maggie Bill jumps to catch Elia Hazar’s pass and finishes low; Heels lead 1-0

0:00 The game is on

PREGAME Carolina is wearing the dark blue, and Syracuse is in the all-white with orange numbers

PREGAME The teams are warming up on Ernie Davis Legends Field, with the temperature at 72 degrees. The outdoor temperature at the moment is 42 degrees. The winter snows have all but melted, but it is gray out today

PREGAME The Orange are in a predicament. We’ll flesh it out later, but it is entirely possible that this team may wind up being ineligible for the NCAA Tournament for finishing with a sub-.500 record, something which has been unthinkable since Gary Gait took over this team in the spring of 2008

PREGAME Syracuse’s offense is mercurial, with four 20-goal scorers — Emily Hawyrschuk, Nicole Levy, Riley Donahue, and Sam Swart. The problem with this team, however, has been defense. As a team, the Orange have conceded an average 14.3 goals per game. While this is understandable in the new Possession Clock Era of NCAA lacrosse, note that the team’s go-to goalkeeper, Asa Goldstock, has a higher GAA (14.46) than the team total. Not a good sign

PREGAME Marie McCool is the leader of this team, with her abilities in the draw circle and in the attack zone being well-documented. But the leading point-getter this season is sophomore Katie Hoeg. Jamie Ortega, the freshman, has been magnificent this year, and her classmate Ally Mastroiani, has been brilliant in spot duty

PREGAME That’s right. Syracuse is winless in the ACC thus far this season. But it’s not for lack of effort; three of the four defeats were by one goal; two of which were in extra time

PREGAME UNC is 7-3 on the season, 4-1 in the ACC; Syracuse is 8-6 and 0-4 in the conference

PREGAME Hello, and welcome to the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, N.Y. for this ACC conference game between the Syracuse women’s lacrosse team and the University of North Carolina