The No. 17 North Carolina men’s lacrosse team (6-6, 1-2 ACC) dominated No. 1 Syracuse for the majority of Saturday’s match, but the Orange came back from five goals down to hand the Tar Heels a stunning 11-12 overtime loss.
Neither the Tar Heels or the Orange seemed in the mood to start the action in the highly-anticipated matchup between the ACC rivals. A sluggish start to the first quarter — which featured four turnovers, nine missed shots and just two total goals in the first 10 minutes — left the crowd with little to cheer for.
With the levy waiting to break in one direction or the other, UNC’s push to slow down top-ranked Syracuse faltered. The Orange rattled off three goals in just under 2:30 to jump out to a 4-1 lead.
The Tar Heels seemed on the verge of falling on the wrong side of yet another blowout. Just then, North Carolina woke up.
UNC responded with a 9-1 run of their own through more than 25 minutes of play, including a shutout of the high-powered Orange offense in the second quarter.
But just as suddenly as they turned it on, the Tar Heels came to a screeching halt in the face of a valiant Syracuse push. Looking to avoid the upset, Syracuse battled back to tie the game in the final minutes of regulation. In overtime, with a chance to ruin UNC’s final regular-season game at Fetzer Field, the Orange scored in sudden death to cap off the comeback.
Who stood out?
UNC’s Luke Goldstock was phenomenal in the loss, showing flashes of his 2014-15 campaign, where he broke the UNC single-season scoring record with 50 goals. Goldstock powered UNC’s comeback, after the Tar Heels fell behind.