The North Carolina men’s soccer team advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 4-2 penalty shootout win over Loyola Maryland.
In this win-or-go-home game, the UNC men’s soccer team displayed its assertiveness in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday night at Dorrance Field. The first half was characterized by numerous shots on goal, all of which were unsuccessful.
The most exciting sequence occurred 21 minutes into the game where there were three shots on goal in less than two minutes, but otherwise the first half was a slow one, ending scoreless.
Defense was strong on both ends of the field with Loyola Maryland goalkeeper Chase Vosvick and UNC graduate goalkeeper Alec Smir each having one save each in the beginning of the second half. Smir’s occurred early into the second half, where he forcefully dived left and deflected the Greyhounds’ shot attempt.
With 19 minutes left in the second half, UNC graduate defender Filippo Zattarin made a pivotal stop inside the box off a Loyola Maryland corner kick, sending the crowd roaring in celebration of the defender’s aggressiveness.
Stagnancy was a clear trend in tonight’s game with the team having seven failed shots by the end of second half with the Greyhounds having only four.
Another trend presented itself early in the game—yellow cards. There were a total of six bookings in regulation, four for the Greyhounds and two for the Tar Heels. The game was also high in fouls with Loyola Maryland ending the game with 21 fouls compared to UNC’s nine.
UNC did a good job maintaining possession for the majority of the night, but was unable to score in regulation, forcing both teams to head to overtime.