By James Giza
Assistant SportSaturday Editor
SAN JOSE, Calif. - At some level, even if it happens to be buried somewhere deep in his subconscience, the national titles have to start blending together for North Carolina women's soccer coach Anson Dorrance.
Was it 1987, when we went undefeated and won the NCAA championship? No, wait, that was every season from 1986 to 1989. And again from 1991 to 1993. Oh, plus, 1984 and 1997. I always forget those two.
But after the road his team traveled this season, Sunday's 2-1 victory against sixth-seeded UCLA in front of 9,566 at Spartan Stadium should stand out in his mind for years to come.
Playing without an injured Susan Bush, playing with Laurie Schwoy available only for spot duty, playing with leading-assist woman Jena Kluegel fighting a right ankle injury and playing with three losses for the first time in 20 years, the fifth-seeded Tar Heels captured their 16th NCAA title in the tournament's 19-year history.
"Every year it becomes more special so that eventually I will have a heart attack up here," Dorrance said. "This was a special win for a lot of different reasons. When there is adversity, you appreciate winning a lot more."
Call them the Cardiac Kids. Call them the Heart-Attack Heroes. Any such moniker for this year's Tar Heels (21-3) would be fitting after they posted a comeback victory for the third time in four tournament games.
After erasing a one-goal halftime deficit to defeat top-ranked Notre Dame 2-1 in the semifinals on Friday, the Tar Heels came from behind again on Sunday to take the title.