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No. 1 UNC women's lacrosse dominates Louisville, 20-7, behind five goals from Wurzburger

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The UNC women’s lacrosse team celebrates after scoring a goal during the game against UF on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2023, at Dorrance Field. UNC beat UF 12-5.

No. 1 UNC women’s lacrosse (7-0) dominated Louisville (4-4) 20-7 in Louisville on Thursday. 

What happened?

The Tar Heels remained dominant throughout the entire first quarter. Although both teams showed some strong defense, UNC built up an early 3-0 lead. Reilly Casey scored first into the top right of the goal with ease and an assist from Caroline Godine. 

After winning the following draw control and exhibiting excellent passing and communication, Caitlyn Wurzburger scored a goal off of a Marissa White assist. Next, White scored a goal of her own, unassisted. 

Louisville’s Hannah Morris scored the team’s first goal, coming from behind the goal and surprising UNC’s defense. 

Louisville fouled Sophie Student, allowing her to split the defense and score an unassisted goal. Louisville fouled yet again, and UNC’s Olivia Dirks was able to capitalize on it and earn a free position goal. 

The Cardinals’ Nicole Perroni scored her first goal of the night from far outside the crease, faking out UNC’s defense. North Carolina unrelentingly led Louisville 8-0 on draw controls during the first period. 

Throughout the second period, the Cardinals began to stage a comeback. UNC’s Alyssa Long was called for a foul, allowing Perroni to score through a hash shot off a flipped stick assist from Kokoro Nakazawa. This began Louisville's 3-goal spurt– two from Perroni and one from Morris. 

Casey scored again, finding her angle after being level with the goal. 

Louisville gained their first draw control and was able to capitalize with a quick stick goal in an open lane from Perroni. Louisville fought to bring the score to 6-5. 

No goals were scored for over five minutes until Casey nailed a lefty shot over the goalie’s head into the corner of the goal. Casey found her open shot again, sailing the ball into the back corner of the goal. Louisville attempted to score before the half ended, but UNC’s defense dominated. North Carolina led 8-5 at the half.  

Despite the game becoming close during the second period, UNC dominated once again in the third period. Wurzburger opened the half with two back-to-back goals, one with her coming from behind the goal and the other with an assist from Casey. 

Excellent UNC defense assured that Louisville did not come back, leaving little room for open shots. 

UNC’s Godine passed from behind the goal and White crashed in through the center lane to score yet again for the Tar Heels. 

Hannah Morris scores a goal from way outside, the ball soaring over Alecia Nicholas’s head. At the next draw control, Emily Nalls grabbed the ball instantly, and UNC scored off of a quick stick assist from Casey and a goal by Wurburger. 

Casey passed the ball over the goal and Mottice came straight down with it into the goal. 

Louisville's Nakazawa fanned out the defense, coming away with a lefty goal. To end the quarter, Humphery then scored two back-to-back goals. 

The fourth quarter saw no goals from Louisville, but four from UNC. Mottice, Wurzburger and White, and Mackenzie Rich all scored. First-year Darcy Feltner also added to her resume, with an impressive over-the-shoulder shot. 

Who stood out? 

Wurzburger scored five goals with two assists, and Casey scored four goals with three assists. Louisville’s Perroni and Morris had three goals each. 

When was it decided?

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Although Louisville attempted a comeback in the second quarter, the Cardinals were never able to bring UNC’s lead down to less than one goal. This deficit was unsurmountable, and UNC ran away with the game beginning at the end of the second period. 

Why does it matter?

This win helps UNC remain undefeated this season, both overall and in the conference. Nine different UNC players scored, exhibiting extreme strength of the bench. 

When do they play next?

UNC will trek to Illinois for a ranked matchup against No. 3 Northwestern on Sunday. The game is set for 1:30 p.m. 

@aplancaster_

@dthsports | sports@dailytarheel.com