Securing its second conference victory, the No. 4 North Carolina women's lacrosse team (9-2, 2-1 ACC) showcased its skills with an offensive barrage at Virginia Tech (8-5, 1-2 ACC) Wednesday, defeating the Hokies 19-5.
Thirty-three seconds in, the Tar Heels struck first with a goal from Jamie Ortega assisted by Katie Hoeg. The duo repeated the connection a minute later, helping North Carolina take an early 2-0 lead.
The Hokies answered back with two scores within five minutes to tie the game. When North Carolina’s Ortega scored another goal, her third of the game, with 22:14 left in the first half, the Hokies tied it up again too.
From there, North Carolina went on a 6-0 run to finish off the half, taking advantage by two goals from Scottie Rose Growney, one from Ally Mastroianni and Emma Crooks each, while adding a pair of goals from Ortega.
Although Virginia Tech’s Julia Bolte opened the second half scoring from a free position shot, the Hokies could not match the Tar Heels offensively in the second half. The Hokies scored only twice in the second half despite taking 10 shots on goal.
In contrast, North Carolina displayed its offensive weapons with a 5-0 run to put the game away. Then, Virginia Tech scored one final goal of the game with 13:03 left before the Tar Heels closed out the game with five straight goals.
Who stood out?
Attacker Jamie Ortega led the Tar Heels with five goals and two assists while Katie Hoeg contributed four goals and four assists. The duo has been a huge part of UNC's success this season.
Redshirt sophomore Taylor Moreno started as goalie and recorded an impressive 18 saves. Moreno tripled the Hokies in the number of saves made.
When was it decided?
Although the game was evenly matched early in the second half, Virginia Tech could not match North Carolina’s offensive success, largely thanks to Moreno’s defensive presence. The Tar Heels found their momentum after taking a 9-3 lead and they did not look back.
Why does it matter?
After a loss to Boston College, North Carolina bounced back with a solid, confidence-building victory against another ACC school. After pulling away in the second half, the Tar Heels showed their depth: 10 players scored in the win over Virginia Tech.
However, UNC did show some room for improvement. North Carolina gave up nine turnovers to the Hokies' five, with something to work on before the next ACC match.
When do they play next?
North Carolina will play at Notre Dame on March 31st at 1 p.m. to play the Fighting Irish. The Tar Heels are now 2-1 in conference play as they face four other ACC teams before the ACC Championship.
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