UNC women outlast Duke in double-OT
The fifth-ranked Duke Blue Devils had the last possession but couldn’t score at the end of overtime, dropping a 12-11 decision to third-ranked North Carolina at Koskinen Stadium on Thursday night.
UNC’s Kara Cannizzaro scored four goals, including the game-winning goal in overtime that got by Duke goalkeeper Kelsey Duryea, who kept her team close throughout the game by making 15 saves while facing 33 shots from the Tar Heels (10-1, 3-0).
“I think it’s a key game — it’s always a big game between Duke and us,” UNC coach Jenny Levy said of beating Duke (9-2, 2-2) on its home field in front of a crowd of 892 in attendance. “Every game against Duke for us is a brawl and a battle.
“I thought we got outplayed in the first half, and we did a good job in coming back and being tough in the second half. I thought we just made some tough plays down the stretch that made a big difference.”
Duke’s Makenzie Hommel led the Blue Devils offense with four goals and had the final chance to tie the game with 10 seconds to play, but her shot was deflected and stopped by Tar Heels goalkeeper Lauren Maksym, who made six saves to earn the win.
Both teams traded the lead throughout the game as 13 different players tallied goals, but the score was tied at the end of each 30-minute half.
In the end, it was the Tar Heels’ patience and poise on offense that allowed them to score when needed to while keeping the ball away from Duke to preserve the win when the final horn blew.
Even with a senior like Hommel leading the way, Duke coach Kerstin Kimel pointed out that the loss would be a good learning experience for her otherwise young squad.
“We play a lot of freshmen — the bulk of our team are freshmen and sophomores,” Kimel said. “Physically, we can hang with any team in the country. We showed that tonight as Carolina is a more veteran team and they’re really a gifted team athletically.
“We defended them really well. They have so many weapons, and I thought we did a really good job of limiting them and made them adjust their game.
The Tar Heels’ dominance off the draw, an 18-9 edge over the Blue Devils, as well as their play in scooping up twice as many ground balls made the difference in beating Duke at home.
Even by drawing up a play and executing it to perfection, the Blue Devils didn’t get the result they were looking for against the Tar Heels on this night.
“It’s the way it goes sometimes,” Kimel said.