The No. 10 North Carolina men’s lacrosse team faced off against Mercer on Saturday. The Tar Heels (2-0) ran out 14-6 winners as their explosive attack proved too much for the Bears (1-1).
An opening goal from Mercer forced the Tar Heels to respond quickly. UNC attackman Brian Cameron did just that by scoring off a turnover. Though Mercer won the ensuing faceoff, they did not hold onto the ball for long, as another turnover resulted in junior attackman Chris Gray connecting with sophomore attackman Nicky Solomon for North Carolina's second goal. The sophomore would also go on to score UNC's third goal of the game. Gray later assisted another goal from Cameron, before Mercer scored a second goal to make the score 4-2 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter saw UNC continue to extend its lead. The offense attack for the Bears turned sour when a turnover around North Carolina’s crease resulted in a goal from UNC first-year attackman Alex Breschi. The Tar Heels only showed defensive weakness one time in the period. Halfway through the quarter, a saved shot from Solomon quickly evolved into a counterattack that gave Mercer its third goal.
After that goal, the Tar Heels’ offense exploded. Senior midfielder Tanner Cook scored a goal from an assist by Gray, before scoring again just 38 seconds later. Junior Alex Trippi then scored UNC's eighth goal from a Gray assist. One more goal from junior midfielder Ryan O’Connell saw the half end with the Tar Heels on top 9-3.