The Daily Tar Heel

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Saturday April 1st

W. Lacrosse: Heels prep for tourney rivalry match

With 20 minutes remaining in the April 17 game against Duke UNC midfielder Jenn Russell lay face down near the UNC goal.

Team captain Amber Falcone sat next to her frantically waving at the Tar Heel sideline for assistance.

In a game that had seen hockey-like checks and what was basically a football tackle from senior Kelly Taylor on the Devils' Caroline Spearman this was different.

Sure enough" sprinting across the field was the UNC team dentist.

""My teeth went through my gum"" Russell said Sunday. It was a little bit of a setback. It kind of shook me a little.""

That might be" but it certainly didn't affect her sense of humor.

Shortly after she was carried to the sideline Russell was visited by Megan Bosica. Instead of asking about Russell's condition" the UNC junior had but five words:

""We need you out here.""

Russell could only grin with surprise at the remark. ""Uh" I'm not even cleared" she said.

Eventually she was, and her effort helped pave the way to a North Carolina victory, 9-7.

After the game, several players talked about the energy and enjoyment that goes along with playing a skilled, physical team such as Duke.

Problem is, the rivals are scheduled to meet only once a season.

But not this year.

Thanks to Duke's win against Boston College in the ACC Tournament, the pair will meet in the semifinals tonight.

We prepare for both teams" but personally I would love to play Duke again junior Kristen Taylor said Thursday before the matchup was finalized. It was a great game last time" and we match up really well with them.""

She'll get her wish" along with the rest of the team.

This time No. 2 seed Tar Heels (13-3 4-1 ACC) and No. 3 seed Duke (12-4 3-2) will meet in Blacksburg Va. home of Virginia Tech.

Though the team started fast last game — going up 2-0 early — the crowd noise seemed to get to UNC and it finished the half sloppily.

A goal by senior Chelsea Parks with 32 seconds remaining gave the Tar Heels a much needed momentum shift and from there" they would not be denied the win.

Russell was huge — scoring two goals — while Bosica added the game winner.

But the outcome was unclear until Taylor's rocket put UNC up two.

""I like to think" ‘Catching first and then shooting second.' Otherwise I overthink it she said. For the most part I just think to keep moving" because that's our main focus on offense.""

After working on her shot before the game" Taylor said she hoped to be in rhythm during crunch time. Coach Jenny Levy stressed offensive attempts in practice this year and Taylor made sure to deliver.

And now one week later" comes the rematch.

""I loved (the Duke game)"" Russell said Sunday. It taught us that we just need to be the ones finishing games.""

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