The No. 1 UNC field hockey team (9-1, 3-0 ACC) defeated No. 11 Boston College (7-5, 1-3 ACC), 3-1, Friday afternoon in Chapel Hill in its eighth straight win.
The Eagles came into the match 1-4 against top-10 opponents, only putting up five goals throughout the five games.
The first quarter was a battle between the lines for both teams. North Carolina managed to put up an aggressive offensive effort to outshot Boston College, 5-2, and create four penalty corners, but, was unable to score on any of the attempts.
The second quarter was dominated by the Tar Heels, who outshot the Eagles 4-0. After a green card was awarded to senior back Romea Riccardo in the 24th minute, the UNC went down one player.
A little over one minute into the green card, first-year forward Charly Bruder drove down the left side of the field and got underneath the defense. As Boston College goalkeeper Caroline Kelly came out to stop the shot, Bruder followed up her own shot, tapping it in the back of the net to put the Tar Heels up 1-0 with just under six minutes remaining in the first half.
Not even two minutes into the third quarter, junior back Kelly Smith notched a key save, by reaching her stick in the air to block a shot that would have knotted the game, after graduate goalkeeper Maddie Kahn came out of the goal, leaving the net momentarily empty.
“Our defense is super strong, they understand both sides of the ball,” Bruder said. “It helps us have an attacking advantage.”
Later in the third quarter, with under three minutes left on the clock, junior midfielder Lisa Slinkert, left alone in open space, reverse swept the ball across the front of the goal. It was deflected up, and senior forward Paityn Wirth, who was running down the field on the back side post, batted the ball out of the air and into the net to give UNC a 2-0 lead.
“We want to click and we want chemistry,” sophomore forward Ryleigh Heck said. “One thing our team is doing is selfless things for each other other people don’t see. We make selfless leads, selfless tackle backs. It brings us all together. If this girl is doing this, then I want to do it.”