And after losing the first game and struggling throughout the second, the Tar Heels rebounded to win the match 3-1.
After being outscored 10-4 to end the first game, a 30-22 loss, UNC found themselves trailing again,
28-27, near the end of game two.
"Early in the match, William & Mary completely controlled the tempo," UNC coach Joe Sagula said. "We weren't very disciplined early, and it took us a while to get into blocking rhythm.
"They're very good defensively, and they just kept digging a lot of our best shots and forcing us to make errors, exactly what they wanted to do."
Two points away from falling behind 2-0 to the Tribe, UNC came to life, taking three consecutive points on kills by Laura Greene, Malaika Underwood and Nicole Reis to win the second game 30-28.
UNC then raced out to an 11-4 lead in game three and never looked back as the Tar Heels improved to 5-3 on the season.
Sagula attributed the team's win to improved play in several areas, including the front line. Reis and Greene recorded double-doubles in kills and digs, and Molly Pyles played well.
"In the third game, which was probably the key for us, Nicole Reis had a lot of big swings, Molly Pyles scored effectively, and Laura Greene had five kills, no errors," Sagula said. "They were good kills, but you didn't notice them."
Joining teammates Reis and Greene with a double-double was Underwood, who paced the team 44 assists and 18 digs.
"(Underwood) set in six matches on the season for us, never had been a setter before and just gets better every time she plays," Sagula said. "(W&M) has beaten some of the teams we'll be facing. This is a great win for this team."
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