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The Daily Tar Heel

Tar Heels notch shutout No. 8

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Senior midfielder Yael Averbuch recorded two goals and one assist against Virginia Tech" bringing her total to five scores on the season.

For most of the first half it seemed as though the No. 2 North Carolina women's soccer team was shooting at a goal with a lid on it.

Fortunately for the Tar Heels the Virginia Tech defense broke the lid with an own goal for UNC's first score and things got worse from there for the Hokies.

The scorecard originally credited the goal to Ali Hawkins but when she admitted postgame that she never touched the ball" the scorers gave it to Yael Averbuch with a Virginia Tech deflection.

""We try really hard to keep up our offensive pressure" Averbuch said.

We know that the longer we let them hang in the game the longer it is 0-0" the harder it's going to be on us."" 

Having broken the tie"" Averbuch widened the margin with a bending goal from 23 yards out that was blocked from the goalkeeper's view until it was too late for her to make a play.

""As it came to me" I was thinking that I want to blast it so bad Averbuch said.

But the back of my head said ‘Anson's going to kill me.' So I focused on bending it and keeping it on goal" and I was happy about the result.""

The Tar Heels controlled the game with aggressive play" pressuring Virginia Tech into turnovers" which quelled the building Hokie attack while creating plenty of attacking options for UNC.

""Our girls worked their asses off" North Carolina coach Anson Dorrance said.

We were absolutely all over the place pressurizing their backs" and the midfield pressure was also wonderful.""

Regardless of the early struggles" the 4-0 victory represents an impressive win as this same Hokie squad beat No. 8 UVa. considered an ACC powerhouse" three days ago.

""Four to zero against any team in the conference is a quality win" especially against a team that has taken out one of the top tier teams" Dorrance said. So we are very excited to be where we are right now.""

Dorrance made sure his team knew that Virginia Tech would not be a team to sleep on"" a point that was not lost on his team.

""We definitely are going to have a lot of respect for any team that can beat Virginia. Virginia is a great team" Averbuch said. So coming into the game" we know that Virginia Tech can play. They're going to be a quality opponent.""

The Tar Heels created numerous shooting chances" and most of their 22 shot attempts were close to the goal.

UNC was in the driver's seat all game and held Virginia Tech to five shots and only two of those were on goal. The clean sheet marked the eighth shutout of the season for the Tar Heels.

Hawkins who registered her first goal of the season as well" wasted no time in deciding which she valued more.

""Oh" the shutout for sure. The goals are cool it's cool to score" but the shutouts are what matter.""

The redshirt sophomore's last goal for the Tar Heels was Nov. 18"2006 against Tennesse in the third round of the NCAA tournament.

After starting 25 games in 2006" Hawkins sat out all of last year while recovering from an ACL tear that  occurred while playing with the U.S. U21 team.

Sunday the midfielder was the linchpin for the defense while also being involved with two goals.

""Her leadership" as soon as she stepped in the game was the margin of victory" Dorrance said.

To see her score a goal was wonderful because I really felt like her performance merited something special.""



Contact the Sports Editor at sports@unc.edu.


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