North Carolina opened the second half with an apparent goal, but a crease violation was called and waved the goal off. Just a couple minutes later however, some crisp ball movement from the Tar Heels freed Jacob Kelly on the crease who tucked it home easily to put UNC back up two.
The Blue Jays answered with a goal of their own after UNC went one man down after having too many men on the field. Moments later, they tied the game back up as Owen Colwell scored the second long pole goal of the game for Johns Hopkins on a fast break. Following Ara Atayan’s third goal for UNC to make the score 7-7, the Blue Jays tied the game and then took the lead on back-to-back goals from Kyle Marr, both assisted by Cole Williams.
Johns Hopkins took an 8-7 lead into the final frame. UNC started man up thanks to an offsides penalty on the Blue Jays, but could not convert and on the ensuing clear Hopkins scored to go up 9-7. UNC’s Tanner Cook responded and rifled a shot from distance into the top left corner of the goal.
Moments later however, Cook would commit a costly penalty with a hit to the head on a Johns Hopkins attackman. The Blue Jays would be a man up for the full two minutes, but a nice foot save from UNC goalkeeper Jack Pezzulla limited the damage to just one goal, and with 10:56 left the Tar Heels trailed,10-8.
The Blue Jays regained their largest lead of the game at three goals when Brett Baskin scored off an assist from Joey Epstein.
The Tar Heels made a mad dash with a flurry of goals in the final minute, but could not win the final face-off and the Blue Jays held on to an 11-10 victory.
Who stood out?
The first half scoring was spread evenly for the most part, with the exception of sophomore midfielder Atayan. Atayan scored three goals, and was the only player to score multiple times in the first half. His strong play continued into the second half, as he simultaneously secured a hat trick and gave UNC the lead at 7-6.
When was it decided?
Justin Anderson let loose a shot that looked to have gone in. Instead, it fell just short, and the Blue Jays cleared the ball, ran a solid possession, and Epstein assisted Baskin for their final goal of the game. What could have been a one-goal game became a three-goal game, and despite UNC’s frantic rally in the final minute, the lead proved to be insurmountable.
Why does it matter?
The upset was the first setback of the season for the Tar Heels, who must learn quickly from their mistakes and prepare for a challenging schedule ahead. It should serve to bring down to earth any arrogance that may have begun to build following their hot start to the season.
When do they play next?
Next up for the Tar Heels is a date with No. 9 Denver in Chapel Hill next Saturday at 11 a.m.
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