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The Daily Tar Heel

Men's soccer takes overtime win at Campbell

A dog-pile or dance move usually follows a game-winning golden goal, but the No. 1 North Carolina men’s soccer team left the field Tuesday night with a lot more on its mind than celebration.

In the 97th minute, sophomore midfielder Raby George scored his third goal of the season to give the Tar Heels a 1-0 win against unranked Campbell on the road. But this non-regulation result is one the team is becoming all too familiar with.

Out of the past five games, North Carolina has carried the pressure of golden goal on its backs for four.

“This was fourth time we went into overtime in five game and although it’s not terrible it’s not ideal,” redshirt junior goalkeeper Brendan Moore said. “Going into Campbell we wanted to progress and get a win in 90 minutes so we were a little disappointed in our performance tonight.”

UNC (3-0-2) remains undefeated, but the physical exhaustion of the extra minutes combined with the frustration of morale is not lost on the team.

“I say to them, ‘We’ve been here before so it doesn’t matter if we’re in overtime or regulation, it’s going down as a W,’” coach Carlos Somoano said.

“I don’t want them feeling like there is some pressure like they’ve failed.

“We try to keep the psychology of the team positive and not so that they start to look at themselves like, ‘Here we go again.’”

Although the Tar Heels had struggled in the past with finding cohesion on offense, they doubled the Camels’ shots on goal with an aggressive, season-high 16 attempts.

The closest North Carolina came to a regulation victory was sophomore Raby George’s free kick in the 71st minute that sailed just wide of the net.

The 90 minutes ended scoreless, and the threat of overtime left the Tar Heels with no time to ponder their mistakes.

“I was just trying to stay in tune to the game because in overtime it’s golden goal,” Moore said. “So as a goalkeeper the only thing I want to focus on is keeping the ball out of the net and keeping the defense organized because one mistake can lose the game.”

In the beginning of the period, the Camels made some dangerous drives into the UNC defense.

A Campbell header off a corner kick went wide and soon after Moore was forced to block a shot 12 yards out from a forward who got in behind the North Carolina defense.

George, however, was able to redeem himself when he collected a rebounded corner kick and ripped a shot off of a Camel defender into the net, ending the game immediately as UNC escaped for a win and avoided posting three straight draws.

But the Tar Heels still weren’t completely satisfied.

“No, I don’t think the team was happy about the win,” Somoano said.

“I think it was more of a sense of, now we have got to do better. But I don’t want us to feel like we’re completely failing here because we haven’t been beaten this year —there’s something going well.”

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