For the second week in a row, the North Carolina men’s lacrosse team lost in heartbreaking fashion.
After suffering an overtime defeat to top-ranked Syracuse on senior day last weekend, No. 16 UNC fell at No. 6 Notre Dame, 14-13, after leading by as many as two goals in the final period.
“I thought we played hard, but we weren’t able to make a stop when we needed to ...” head coach Joe Breschi said. “You’ve got to be able to make plays at the end to win games like that.”
The game was a rapid affair from the opening whistle, with both teams trading goals in the first two periods. The Fighting Irish (7-3, 2-2 ACC) built a 7-5 halftime lead thanks to a 3-0 run in the second quarter.
Junior attacker Chris Cloutier scored three of his season-high four goals in the second half, and his final goal capped a 4-0 run that gave the Tar Heels (6-7, 1-3 ACC) a 12-10 lead with 10:20 to play.
Just as it appeared that North Carolina was in control of the game, successive penalties swung the momentum back in Notre Dame’s advantage.
The man-up advantage and a pushing penalty by UNC sparked a three-goal run for the Fighting Irish with 10:01 left in the game. Notre Dame wouldn’t trail again.
“That kind of shifted the momentum a little bit,” Breschi said. “We weren’t able to stop them, get a big play or a big save.”
First-year midfielder William Perry tied the game at 13 with a goal with 5:56 left in the fourth quarter, but Notre Dame’s Bryan Costabile scored three minutes later to seal his team’s 14-13 victory.